Alfons Mensdorff-Pouilly (born September 7, 1953 in Vienna ; full name Alfons Eduard Alexander Antonius Maria Andreas Hubertus Christoph Mensdorff-Pouilly ) is an Austrian businessman, lobbyist and farmer .
Alfons Mensdorff-Pouilly is a large landowner and works as a forest manager . In this capacity he is chairman of the “Association of Agricultural and Forestry Farms in Burgenland”. For commercial hunting, he runs pheasant and duck breeding on his property in Luising in Burgenland. Attempts with an ostrich farm and the idea of selling canned game to the USA as part of his “Burgenland game specialties production company” , as well as attempts to succeed with game pie or canned soup, failed.
In addition, Mensdorff-Pouilly has numerous companies and holdings in Austria and other European countries that do not deal with agriculture and forestry. He is the sole shareholder (September 2008) and former managing director of "MPA Handelsgesellschaft mbH" in Vienna, which was founded as a trading company for goods of all kinds, but whose purpose is given as management consultancy. Through the MPA, Mensdorff-Pouilly was repeatedly suspected of being involved in corruption scandals. He is referred to in the media as a gun lobbyist .
Investigations, convictions and controversies
The Serious Fraud Office (SFO) in London accuses Mensdorff-Pouilly of being involved as a lobbyist for the British arms company BAE Systems “in active and passive bribery processes in national and international procurement processes for military equipment”. On January 29, 2010, Mensdorff-Pouilly was questioned by the SFO in London and arrested. The arrest came as a surprise to von Mensdorff-Pouilly's lawyer. However, the SFO announced that the action had been coordinated by the European Unit for Judicial Cooperation at international level. On February 4, 2010, the Westminster District Court decided to release Mensdorff-Pouilly on bail equivalent to more than 570,000 euros. However, he had to hand in his passports and be available for further questioning at any time. On February 5, 2010, however, the proceedings against Mensdorff-Pouilly in England were finally dropped. The reason for this was intentional, but as it later turned out, illegal agreements between the SFO, the US Department of Justice and BAE Systems for the payment of penalties of around 280 million pounds. It was about corruption cases in Tanzania , Saudi Arabia and a few other countries, where BAE is said to have made payments to influential people in order to receive orders. BAE admitted accounting irregularities and bribery in Tanzania. After the penalties were paid, all further investigations by the US authorities and the SFO against individuals who might have been involved in such cases were discontinued. SFO Director Richard Alderman stated that “it is no longer in the public interest to continue the surveys of individuals.” The investigation against Mensdorff-Pouilly in Austria is not affected by this suspension of the investigation in England. On May 25, 2011, it became known that Mensdorff-Pouilly had been awarded custody compensation of 430,000 euros for the time he was in custody in London.
Mensdorff-Pouilly hit the UK, Swedish, Czech and Hungarian headlines in 2007 when he and his network of companies in connection with the distribution of commission money for the conclusion of contracts for the purchase or leasing of Saab Gripen fighters by the Czech Republic and Hungary in the years 1999 to 2006 was mentioned. In connection with his consulting work for BAE Systems, he was accused of bribery in various countries. The brokerage of these transactions, which also included commission payments to Czech and Hungarian politicians, was ultimately handled by the Panama- registered company Valurex, based in Geneva, of the British brigadier and multimillionaire Timothy Landon . Until his death in 2007, Landon was married to Katharina Esterházy , a cousin of Mensdorff-Pouilly, whom he also represents as an agent for her possessions in Austria. In 2006 he sold Pottendorf Castle to the community of Pottendorf in her name . Mensdorff-Pouilly also had a consultancy contract with Valurex, but according to his own statements only after the contracts with the Czech Republic and Hungary were signed. In October 2008, he was on the way from his Scottish estate Dalnaglar Castle in Glenshee ( Perthshire stopped) to the airport by the British police. He was asked to follow the police to an interview in Carlisle , England, as the SFO has no competencies in Scotland. Mensdorff-Pouilly, through one of his Hungarian companies, owns the castle in Scotland, which was also searched on September 24, 2008.
The Saab Gripen fighters were ultimately not bought by the Czech state, but leased for ten years in 2005. Michael Piatti-Fünfkirchen , a Czech-Austrian landowner and third cousin of Alfons Mensdorff-Pouilly, filed a fraud report against his relative in December 2008 because he had offered him a million dollars in 1998 if he “contacted the people involved in the decision Government representatives of the Czech Republic involved in the procurement process ”. According to Piatti-Fünfkirchen, there were meetings with representatives of the Czech government, BAE managers and a representative of Mensdorff-Pouilly. But then he himself did not receive any payment from Mensdorff-Pouilly. Mensdorff-Pouilly's lawyer Harald Schuster denied the allegations and said that payment was not possible because Mensdorff-Pouilly himself had not received any commission payments for the Czech business.
After it became known at the beginning of 2007 that Christer van der Kwast, Chief Public Prosecutor of the Swedish Anti-Corruption Authority, had initiated investigations against Valurex because of the procedures relating to the award of contracts for Saab-Gripen fighter aircraft by the Czech Republic, Alfons Mensdorff-Pouilly was declared on May 21 In 2007 he was summoned to the parliamentary committee of inquiry in Austria, which investigated the processes surrounding the procurement of Eurofighter fighter aircraft by the Republic of Austria. However, the Serious Fraud Office secured a report from the MPA dated March 27, 2003 to the BAE, from which it emerged that the MPA had “exerted pressure” to cancel the first tender for the purchase of military aircraft by the Republic of Austria. After quoting this tender, the choice would be the F-16 from Lockheed Martin fallen. The contract was put out to tender again, giving Eurofighter the opportunity to submit an offer. "Following the aggressive payment of success bonuses to key decision-makers," says the MPA report, "Austria announced an order worth € 1.79 billion for the Eurofighter Typhoon."
According to a statement of the facts that Pilz sent to the Austrian public prosecutor's office on October 1, 2008, the responsible public prosecutor carried out investigations against Alfons Mensdorff-Pouilly on suspicion of false testimony before the parliamentary Eurofighter investigative committee from January 2009. On February 27, 2009, Mensdorff-Pouilly was arrested in his castle in Luising because of the risk of blackout . The pre-trial detention lasted five weeks. Almost a year after his pre-trial detention in the Vienna Regional Court for Criminal Matters , no charges had been brought against Alfons Mensdorff-Pouilly in Austria, but the public prosecutor's office continued to deal with the case.
Siemens bribe scandal
On April 25, 2009 it was announced that the Vienna Public Prosecutor's Office was also investigating a possible connection between Mensdorff-Pouilly and the Siemens bribery affair. Accordingly, the alleged mastermind of the Siemens affair, Dr. Roland K., have also revised the accounts of Brodmann Business SA. The company, based in the British Virgin Islands, is under the control of Mensdorff and was investigated by the authorities in connection with alleged bribery payments relating to the British arms company BAE Systems. In 2007, Mensdorff-Pouilly worked for Siemens as a consultant on a Hungarian truck toll project.
Telecom Tetron affair
In September 2011 the US Securities and Exchange Commission began investigations against Mensdorff-Pouilly and Motorola . The electronics group is said to have transferred 2.2 million euros to the lobbyist from April 2004. This is said to have been used to make “inadmissible payments” in the form of vacations and gifts to political decision-makers in Europe and the Middle East, among other things in order to influence the award of the Austrian public authority radio project TETRON in favor of Motorola. The Telekom Austria will additionally 1.1 million euros to Mensdorff-Pouilly paid and beyond hunting trips worth over 170,000 euros have ordered. Mensdorff-Pouilly is said to have used the money to invite then Interior Minister Ernst Strasser ( ÖVP ) and his cabinet (including Christoph Ulmer, Mathias Vogl, Michael Kloibmüller, Oskar Gallop and Philipp Ita) to a hunt. The Green MP and chairman of the Euro Fighter - committee Peter Pilz sees this as an inconsistency and prohibited acceptance of gifts to officials.
In a two-page Sunday interview with the daily Kurier , which was conducted in the presence of his in-house lawyer, Mensdorff-Pouilly defended his fee: “I advised Telekom in various countries for three years, was available around the clock and helped develop strategies. The contract only ran for eight months. So why should that be immoral please? "
On December 14, 2015, in connection with the payments made by Telekom Austria, he was sentenced to three years of unconditional imprisonment and to repay 1.1 million euros plus interest in damages.
Appeal decision, execution of sentences with ankle shackles
In October 2017, the Vienna Higher Regional Court reduced the sentence to two years imprisonment, 16 months of which were conditional.
On March 23, 2018 it became known that the convicted person did not have to serve the unconditional part - 8 months - of his prison sentence, but was allowed to wear an ankle cuff (and the associated house arrest in his castle in Luising). The head of the Eisenstadt prison justifies the use of an ankle cuff with GPS - with 3 m location accuracy - with the particular celebrity of Mr. Mensdorff. Conditions are: prohibition to hunt, compliance with a radius of movement that is smaller than the castle building, no trips abroad.
According to the Green MP Peter Pilz , the Vienna Public Prosecutor found documents for Telekom transfers and OMV payments during a house search in Mensdorff companies . According to this, Mensdorff-Pouilly had received a total of one million euros from OMV in the account of his consulting company MPA by 2005. In February 2005, OMV transferred a further 500,000 euros to an account of the letterbox company Brodman Business SA in the British Virgin Islands, which the investigating authorities also attribute to Mensdorff-Pouilly. According to OMV, studies and market analyzes were paid for. Pilz, however, suspects bribe payments and corruption in connection with the purchase of the majority stake in the Romanian oil and gas company Petrom by OMV in 2004 for 1.5 billion euros. According to a Romanian business newspaper, OMV received Petrom at half its value.
Conviction for forgery of evidence
In 2012, the Vienna Public Prosecutor's Office filed a criminal complaint against Mensdorff-Pouilly on suspicion of money laundering, false testimony and falsification of evidence. On January 17, 2013, he was acquitted of charges of money laundering and false statements. He was sentenced to two months' conditional imprisonment for forging evidence. The public prosecutor's office appealed against the acquittal, which, however, was confirmed by the Higher Regional Court of Vienna on January 9, 2014, making the judgment final.
According to media reports, the German medical technology group Drägerwerk paid 3.146 million euros to Mensdorff-Pouilly's MPA Budapest between 2006 and 2009. In 2006, Drägerwerk paid over 275,000 euros to Mensdorff-Pouilly's MPA Handelsgesellschaft in Vienna. In the same year, the Austrian Ministry of Health, which at that time was subordinate to his wife, Maria Rauch-Kallat ( ÖVP ), initiated the sale of flu masks from the companies 3M and Dräger. The ministry later had to buy back the masks that were not sold at twice the price of a competing product.
Mensdorff-Pouilly is a member of the former noble family Mensdorff-Pouilly . He has been with the former politician and former Federal Minister since October 16, 1994. D. Maria Rauch-Kallat (ÖVP) is married and has a son from a previous relationship. Contrary to the marriage-naming law at that time, Rauch-Kallat kept the double name from her first marriage unchanged. This "Lex Rauch-Kallat" led to media and opposition excitement and subsequently to a reform of marriage naming law. He is now separated from his wife.
- Betriebe Burgenland ( Memento from December 16, 2006 in the Internet Archive ), Land und Forst, accessed on January 12, 2009
- The new business of Count Mensdorff-Pouilly ( Memento of September 28, 2008 in the Internet Archive ), Wirtschaftsblatt of January 24, 1997
- Who is Alfons Mensdorff-Pouilly really? ( Memento from September 27, 2011 in the Internet Archive ), profile from September 24, 2011
- clarification on interceptor deal ( memento of February 2, 2010 in the Internet Archive ), ORF of January 29, 2010
- Former BAE agent charged with corruption ( Memento of February 10, 2010 in the Internet Archive ) Press release of the Serious Fraud Office of January 29, 2010
- Accusation of bribe payments ( Memento of February 7, 2010 in the Internet Archive ) orf.at of February 4, 2010
- BAE Settles Corruption Charges ( February 9, 2010 memento in the Internet Archive ), New York Times, February 5, 2010
- David Cameron under pressure to soften hardline deficit strategy ( Memento from December 1, 2016 in the Internet Archive ), The Guardian from September 14, 2011
- SFO withdraws proceedings against Count Alfons Mensdorff-Pouilly ( memento of February 10, 2010 in the Internet Archive ), SFO press release of February 5, 2010
- Mensdorff receives 430,000 euros in compensation , ORF
- Hungarian Spectrum: The Gripen Affair ( Memento from September 25, 2009 in the Internet Archive ) (from August 13, 2007. engl.)
- Inquiry from Member of Parliament Dr. Haimbuchner to the Minister of Justice in the Austrian Parliament (11 November 2007; PDF; 42 kB)
- Inquiry response from Minister of Justice Dr. Maria Berger (from January 28, 2008)
- PDS Frontline World: EGlobal Corruption Roundup II ( Memento from December 27, 2016 in the Internet Archive ), July 2, 2009
- Report on the failed interceptor purchase in the Czech Republic , Tyden.cz of February 20, 2007 (Czech)
- Monthly review: Schlosspark belongs to the Pottendorferinnen ( Memento from April 21, 2007 in the Internet Archive ) (from September 2006)
- Viennese count arrested in BAE probe ( Memento from February 1, 2014 in the Internet Archive ), Financial Times from October 20, 2008 (English)
- Fraud report against Mensdorff-Pouilly ( memento of January 2, 2009 in the Internet Archive ), Der Standard of December 22, 2008
- Profile: Mensdorff-Pouilly makes detailed statements for the first time on allegations of bribery , from February 24, 2007
- Investigations against Mensdorff-Pouilly , ORF from January 3, 2009
- Public prosecutor's office is investigating Mensdorff-Pouilly , Der Standard from January 3, 2009
- Mensdorff-Pouilly arrested , ORF of February 27, 2009
- Custody for weapons lobbyist Mensdorff-Pouilly ( memento of March 2, 2009 in the Internet Archive ), Der Standard of March 1, 2009
- How the Siemens bribery case relates to Alfons Mensdorff-Pouilly ( Memento from April 28, 2009 in the Internet Archive ), profile from April 25, 2009
- US authorities are investigating Motorola and Mensdorff-Pouilly ( Memento of August 13, 2013 in the Internet Archive ), Der Standard of September 3, 2011
- profile: Trügschüsse , September 12, 2011, pages 21-25
- A couple of freshmen to warm up ( Memento from February 1, 2014 in the Internet Archive ), Der Standard from June 24, 2008
- The Count and His Morals , Kurier, September 11, 2011, pages 1, 6 and 7
- Die Presse : Three years imprisonment for lobbyist Mensdorff-Pouilly ( Memento from December 16, 2015 in the Internet Archive ) from December 14, 2015, accessed on December 16, 2014
- Ankle cuffs for Mensdorff-Pouilly ( Memento from March 23, 2018 in the Internet Archive ) orf.at, March 23, 2018, accessed March 23, 2018.
- OMV is said to have paid Mensdorff-Pouilly ( memento of October 10, 2011 in the Internet Archive ), Der Standard of September 6, 2011
- Wirtschaftsblatt : New doubts about OMV orders to Mensdorff-Pouilly ( Memento from April 4, 2016 in the Internet Archive ) (from September 7, 2011, only headline readable in the archive.)
- Mensdorff-Pouilly is charged with suspected money laundering ( memento of June 24, 2012 in the Internet Archive ), Der Standard , June 22, 2012
- APA-OTS - Mailing of the Vienna Public Prosecutor: Vienna Public Prosecutor - Subject: Criminal case against Alfons Mensdorff-Pouilly , June 22, 2012
- Acquittal on money laundering allegation ( memento from January 20, 2013 in the Internet Archive ), ORF , January 17, 2013
- Mensdorff: acquittal is final ( memento of February 12, 2014 in the Internet Archive ), Kurier, January 9, 2014
- Contradictions in the flu mask deal ( Memento from July 3, 2012 in the Internet Archive )
- See "Law on the abolition of the nobility, the secular knights and ladies, and of certain titles and dignities" ( Adel repeal Act ) of 3 April 1919th
- Genealogy of the Mensdorff-Pouilly family ( Memento from December 21, 2010 in the Internet Archive )
- Mensdorff-Pouilly and Rauch-Kallat separated ( Memento of December 13, 2015 in the Internet Archive ) orf.at. Retrieved December 13, 2015.
|ALTERNATIVE NAMES||Mensdorff-Pouilly, Alfons Eduard Alexander Antonius Maria Andreas Hubertus Christoph|
|BRIEF DESCRIPTION||Austrian landowner and lobbyist|
|DATE OF BIRTH||September 7, 1953|
|PLACE OF BIRTH||Vienna|