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FP in 150,000 Euro spending mystery

Austria’s far-right Freedom Party (FPÖ) in Carinthia must account for over 150,000 Euros in unexplained spending, says the local court of auditors (RH).

The federal court of auditors (LRH) for Carinthia said questions remain unanswered relating to 154,000 Euros in FPÖ party spending.

The LRH Carinthia inspected all political parties between March and May last year. Whilst most parties had managed to keep their books relatively in order, the FPÖ had failed to abide by many LRH requirements, waiting even to the day of the deadline to establish contact.

When an appointment was granted, the FPÖ then only submitted some of the required documents.

The LRH said income and expenditure accounts presented were "partially defective or not always complete".

Further problems for the inspectors were receipts for explained outgoings, and for legal advice for 16,300 euros paid twice to a client who had only request payment once.

In its unflattering report, the LRH Carinthia said that the local FPÖ had not accounted for 154,000 Euros.

It read: "Furthermore it should also be noted that the expenditure includes lump sum payments, for which the purpose is either not accounted for completely, or not at all with the corresponding invoices.”

As the FPÖ had not given any official position in relation to this the LRH Carinthia said the situation was “particularly serious".

It said: "on the one hand the unaccounted use of 154,000 Euros in funds is still to be addressed, and on the other hand unclear transactions … remained open, for which the FPÖ Carinthia was expected to take steps to clear it up, in order to exclude any criminal dimensions to the matter."

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