BREMEN, Germany --- The Bremen prosecutor's office has charged five former managers of the armaments company Rheinmetall Defense Electronics of bribery. Four German and a Greek ex-employee are alleged to have paid a total of 3.3 million euros to Greek officials between 1998 and 2011 to win an order for an air defense system, ARD’s “Panorama" program and the "Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung" reported.
A spokesman for the prosecutor's office in Bremen confirmed on Thursday that it was about bribery of foreign officials in a particularly serious case.
Rheinmetall refused to comment on the proceedings. The company was not part of the procedure, according to a spokesman.
The order had a total value of 150 million euros. Overall, however, several more armament projects were being planned.
At the end of 2014, Rheinmetall accepted a fine of more than 37 million euros from the Prosecution Office in Bremen in connection with the controversial business in Greece. At the time, the Group had emphasized the end of the company's criminal proceedings against Bremer's subsidiary Rheinmetall Defense Electronics.
According to the company, the Rheinmetall subsidiary was charged with the breach of the administrative procedures for not detecting and preventing suspicious payments to the sales partner due to the lack of internal controls.
Because of the seriousness of the case, the investigators made the suspects personally liable.