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Examiner charged over driving licence bribes

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12:43 CET+01:00
A driving examiner from Gothenburg has been indicted on bribery charges. The woman is alleged to have accepted half a million kronor ($57,000) in exchange for approving driving licences for 70 test candidates.

According to charges presented on Wednesday at Gothenburg district court, the woman's driving licence bribery trail stretched from from 2004 until she was discovered in February last year.

Four men have also been charged with bribery offences for acting as middlemen between the woman and the driving students.

The woman at the centre of the case has also been indicted on people smuggling charges. She is accused of taking payment of 50,000 kronor to marry an Albanian man in order to facilitate his move to Sweden.

This is the first time the National Anti-Corruption Unit has ever had to deal with a case involving a driving examiner.

"The driving examiner position is unique. Decisions are taken alone and without any checks. Where and how a person has driven is not registered anywhere. There are no cameras and there is no GPS," prosecutor Nils-Erik Schultz told news agency TT.

Schultz said he would not be pressing charges against any of the students believed to have bribed the examiner.

"We're not sure who they are," said Schultz, adding that though the woman had cooperated with investigators she had only been able to identify a handful of students who had paid her bribes.

The woman has admitted to certain bribery offences, though not the more serious charge of aggravated bribery.

Anders Borglund, head of the testing department at the Swedish National Road Administration, said checks surrounding the issuing of driving licences had become more rigorous since the bribery allegations first surfaced.

The administration had undertaken a more supervisory role, he said.

"There have also been more people reporting bribery attempts to the police. This shows that there are driving examiners who are honest."

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