SWEDEN: More guilty in Systembolaget bribery scandal

By | 23 November 2006

The investigation into accusations of bribery and scandal at Sweden's state-run alcohol retail monopoly Systembolaget has resulted in the conviction of nine people this week, according to local reports.

Systembolaget has been under investigation since 2003 for employees allegedly taking bribes from drinks distributors to improve the profile of their products in stores.

According to Swedish newspaper Dagens Nyheter, six former store managers of Systembolaget and three members of staff at distributor Philipson & Soderberg were fined by the Stockholm District Court this week. They were found guilty of paying out or receiving bribes in exchange for having certain products offered in stores across the country.

The newspaper added that four others up on corruption charges had been cleared. These included the CEO of Philipson & Soderberg.

The extent of the fines handed out was not reported.

The investigation has seen more than 100 people charged. In February this year, a group of former Systembolaget store managers were handed fines. Late last year, 18 store managers and two employees at wine distributor Vin-Tradgardh were fined between SEK1,500 and SEK51,000 in the first round of trials concerning the bribes.

Sectors: Spirits, Wine

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