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Croatia: Former PM Sanader granted retrial on corruption charges

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By Euronews
Croatia: Former PM Sanader granted retrial on corruption charges

<p>Croatia’s Constitutional Court has ordered a retrial of former Prime Minister Ivo Sanader after he successfully appealed against a guilty verdict handed down on corruption charges. </p> <p>Sanader, prime minister from 2004 to 2009, had been convicted of taking a bribe from the Hungarian oil group <span class="caps">MOL</span> in 2008 to allow it to take a dominant stake in Croatia’s biggest utility, the oil firm <span class="caps">INA</span>, and also of taking a bribe from Austria’s Hypo Bank in 1994 and 1995, when he was deputy foreign minister.</p> <p>Last year, Croatia’s Supreme Court confirmed the guilty verdicts but cut Sanader’s overall prison sentence to eight and a half years.</p> <p>But in a decision published on its website on Monday, the Constitutional Court said it had upheld appeals in both cases, arguing that procedural errors had deprived Sanader of fair treatment.</p> <p>Tackling corruption was crucial to Croatia’s efforts to join the EU, which it did in 2013. Sanader has always denied any wrongdoing.</p>