The Swiss Times - Swiss News in English

St. Gallen Ex-Banker Wants to Repay All Money

The former banker's lawyer appealed the first instance sentence of seven years imprisonment before the St. Gallen cantonal court on Wednesday. He argued that the sentence was too harsh and that the charge of fraud was not fulfilled. He painted a picture of a defendant who had made mistakes but had never intended to harm or enrich himself. He had mixed the entrusted money with his private investments, buying historical military aircraft. The indictment states that the defendant abused the trust of relatives, in particular, with lies and document forgeries and enriched himself with their property instead of investing the money as promised. He is said to have used the money to finance a lavish wedding, luxury musical instruments, jewelry, luxury holidays, cars and two historical military aircraft. The defendant admitted to making mistakes but denied the accusation of having embezzled the money. He said he wanted to pay it all back. According to his lawyer, initial agreements have been made. Since 2019 he has been in pre-trial detention. The prosecution is demanding a higher sentence of eight years imprisonment. The defendant's father founded the Adullam sect in the Toggenburg. After his death in 2016, the defendant was intended to take over the sect's leadership. A wealthy member of the religious community is also among the victims. The prosecution's plea will follow next. The verdict will not be announced today.

©Keystone/SDA

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