Slovakia’s Supreme Court denied the appeal of Jozef Šikrha, the head of the unlicensed, Bratislava-based SUN deposit company, confirming his sentence of eight years in prison, the SITA newswire reported.
The Supreme Court confirmed the verdict of the Specialised Court in Banská Bystrica from 2009 which found the businessman guilty of extensive fraud as an associate and representative of the company. The court ruled that he had caused damage to more than 500 clients amounting to €8.67 million between 1996 and 2000.
According to the ruling that takes effect on April 11 Šikrha organised actions within the company that contradicted the officially-stated business purpose. The company’s business was in trade, to operate in advertising, car leasing, and purchase and sale of goods. But Šikrha focused the company’s business activities almost exclusively on accepting deposits of money from individuals and promising an interest rate of 40 percent – without any financial guarantee. His business projects failed.
The court wrote that Šikrha took money from people while knowing from the beginning that the company would not be able to pay the promised high interest. SUN was one of several unlicensed deposit companies which the Slovak courts have dealt with in the past.
Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports
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11. Apr 2011 at 14:00