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Ruling in decade-old embezzlement case expected this year

Issues

A ruling in a retrial involving the alleged embezzlement of tens of billions of forints more than a decade ago at the former brokerage of K&H Bank is expected in about six months, the Municipal Court of Budapest told Hungarian news agency MTI today.

The scandal broke in the summer of 2003 with the arrest of Attila Kulcsár, on suspicion of embezzling, with his accomplices, as much as HUF 46 bln from clients, who included state-owned companies as well as private individuals, starting in 1998.

Kulcsár was sentenced to eight years in prison in 2008 and several of his accomplices also got prison time. However, in the course of an appeal of the ruling, a retrial was ordered after it was revealed that false testimony had been given in the case.

The court told MTI that the case had been drawn out because of the deaths of a defendant and an expert witness who had to be replaced. Two of the five judges hearing the case also reached the mandatory retirement age in the meantime, it added.

At the retrial so far, the court has been in session for a hundred days, hearing 150 witnesses and dozens of expert witnesses.

Kulcsár was either in custody or under house arrest from 2003 till 2011, which counts as 4-5 years against any eventual prison sentence.

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