The mayor of Starachowice has been jailed for three and a half years, fined 100,000 złoty, and banned from public office for eight years, after a court ruled that he had accepted bribes.
Wojciech B (pictured), admitted receiving 96,000zł in relation to a fuel supply contract but denies wrongdoing in the matter and said the money did not constitute ‘bribery’. The court in Kielce ruled otherwise, and also ordered that the money he received from energy company Zakłady Energetyki Cieplnej be confiscated.
Wojciech B was also convicted of incitement to perjury, for attempting to persuade others to lie to the court.
Justyna Z, accused of making the payment to the mayor, and of incitement to perjury, was given a two-year sentence suspended for five years. Her grandfather, Marian S, former boss of ZEC, received the same sentence and a 30,000zł fine.
ZEC won a major contract to supply Starachowice with fuel. The mayor said he had accepted the money in order to fund sports and cultural events, but in fact used it for his own election campaign.
The corruption took place between 2008 and 2010. The mayor was arrested at the end of August 2011 and was in prison awaiting the outcome of an investigation, until March 2012. He was then released pending trial, but was immediately suspended from performing official duties.
While he was in jail, he continued to receive half his usual salary. But, he claims, he has not been paid since then – and is suing the city for 68,823zł in unpaid wages. A spokeswoman for Starachowice city said there were no regulations about whether a suspended Mayor should be paid, but would not comment further.
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