Salzburg Finance Scandal

Over one billion euros in taxpayer funds were allegedly gambled on high-risk derivatives by high-ranking Salzburg civil servants: Monika Rathgeber, budget and finance manager for the province of Salzburg is under investigation after being fired in December 2012 amidst accusations of embezzlement and abuse of office. Eduard Paulus, the head of Salzburg’s Finance Department and Rathgeber’s boss, is equally subject of the inquest.

The details unravelled in early December 2012 after evidence of forged documents and signatures from 2006 and 2007 worth of estimated EUR 340 million trade losses were uncovered in an internal investigation and allegedly traced to Rathgeber. The scandal has prompted the resignation of Salzburg’s Social Democratic Finance Director and Vice-Governor David Brenner and the collapse of the regional coalition government. Snap elections for the province will consequently be held on 5 May 2013.

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