Siemens probe extends to Hungary

Farkas also alleges that employees have been extorting funds from him

BUDAPEST — The two-week probe by German prosecutors into an alleged e200 million ($264 million) corruption scandal at multinational firm Siemens has extended to a deal it brokered with Hungarian satellite network SATeLIT TV.

Hungarian media is reporting that in 2001, Siemens officials offered to invest some $6.6 million in the network if the station would return half in kickbacks.

The charge was made by Imre Farkas, then-owner of the now-defunct network, who also alleges that Siemens employees have been extorting funds from him over property that Siemens now controls.

Siemens’ Hungarian office denied the charges, calling them “unfounded accusations,” and pledged to cooperate fully with prosecutors.

Hungarian police reportedly have been investigating extortion allegations concerning Farkas and Siemens since Nov. 8.

Siemens execs allegedly conspired to channel funds into shell companies. Investigators suspect much of the coin was used to bribe officials into awarding contracts worldwide.

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