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Bribery scandal rocks Stockholm arena

Bribery scandal rocks Stockholm arena

Published: 09 Jun 2011 12:05 GMT+02:00
Updated: 09 Jun 2011 12:05 GMT+02:00

A local politician and a construction magnate are among six people charged with corruption in conjunction with the building of a new national sporting arena in Stockholm.

“My opinion is that what these people have done is a punishable offence,” chief prosecutor Alf Johansson of at the National Anti-Corruption Unit (Riksenheten mot korruption) said to news agency TT on Wednesday.

The corruption allegations are connected to the building of a national sporting arena in Solna municipality, and one of the six people charged is local politician Lars-Erik Salminen of the Moderate party, the chairman of the municipal council.

Salminen however claims that he has done nothing wrong. On Wednesday the local Moderate party announced that he would be taking a “time-out” from politics.

“We still have complete confidence in Lars-Erik Salminen. At the same time we will respect his decision to take a time-out so that the political work won’t suffer from this process,“ said Pehr Granfalk, chairman of the Moderate Party in Solna, in a statement.

According to the charges, Salminen and two representatives of a construction company offered the Solna city manager Sune Reinhold “inappropriate compensation” in 2007.

The prosecution claims that a total of 900,000 kronor ($145,296) were paid out to Reinhold.

Apart from Reinhold and Salminen four representatives of the PEAB construction company are now charged with aggravated bribery and corruption, including the company's founder Erik Paulsson

"I welcome the prosecution's investigation into the matter. I am completely gobsmacked by the allegations," he said to daily Expressen.

Lars-Erik Salminen said in a statement that he also welcomed the investigation, which he expects to clear him completely.

“The city guidelines are quite clear. In Solna we don’t accept bribery,” he said.

At the same time he is concerned that the investigation will throw a shadow over the National Arena.

“It is a fantastic project which will provide Solna with a multifunctional arena of international standards, create new jobs and be a positive development to the whole Stockholm-region,” Salminen said.

Aggravated bribery can lead to a prison sentence of up to six years.

TT/Rebecca Martin (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

13:04 June 9, 2011 by matona1
small money
13:05 June 9, 2011 by HYBRED
It sounds more like Chicago than Stockholm.
17:01 June 9, 2011 by Nemesis
This is not news.

If someone in officaldom in Stockholm is not brided, that would be news.
19:10 June 9, 2011 by Great Scott
Yes as usual politicians and business nobs helping themselves again. But I was told Sweden is squeaky clean of any form of corruption, its government told everyone that it was a transparent country.
19:51 June 9, 2011 by conboy
Yes there is no widespread corruption in Sweden according to TV 4 , SVT, the Riksdag, Dagens Nyheter and Svenska Dagbladet all sorted then the Local must have made this up!
21:10 June 9, 2011 by zooeden
145,296 bucks????? That´s fripping peanuts man!!!!

And people go alarmed as Wooooooo, a briiiiiibbbbbbe!!!! get a life people working at the National Anti-Corruption Unit!!!
21:30 June 9, 2011 by Species125
If The Local is edited in British English, why are monetary sums referensed in dollarz?
23:56 June 9, 2011 by DJECKY
oooohhhh,that sickness is affecting sweden too?? i thought that they only put the sickness in the bodies of developing countries.

Bribery and corruption is no news.Even in the Bible there is bribery.

ITS just to lubricate the mouth of somebody so that he or she should stay quite for something to happen.That is NOT a bad thing my brothers.
02:31 June 10, 2011 by GLO
Hey! You dont take anything not deserved, this is just wrong in any country...
08:19 June 10, 2011 by Nemesis
A message to the journalists on the local.

Sweden is in Northern Europe.

It is a few thousand kilometers (not miles) from the USA.

The nearest large currency is the Euro, not the US dollar.

Dollar conversions are of no use to anyone in Europe, unless of course you are deliberately aiming the local at the bunch of right wing fanatics from the USA that regularly post here.
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