The court fined the former auditor for abuse of office

The court fined the former auditor for abuse of office

The Helsinki District Court ruled on Friday Tytti Yli-Viikariformer auditor at the National Audit Office (VTV), pays 80 income-related "daily fines" after finding him guilty of misconduct and maladministration in public office.

The charges relate to an employment contract under which a VTV official received two years’ salary without working.

In its decision, the court held that the publicity given to the case was not a mitigating factor in the sentence handed down to Yli-Viikari, as his defense argued.

The court also stated Mikko Koiranen, another former VTV official, accused him of the same charges for his role in the contract and ordered him to pay 30 performance – related daily fines. The court took into account the publicity involved in the case when considering Koiranen’s punishment.

The prosecutor had demanded that Yli-Viikari be sentenced to three months’ imprisonment for payment fraud and misuse of Finnair Plus points suspected of maladministration. The prosecutor had also demanded conditional imprisonment for both Yli-Viikari and Koiranen for misconduct and misconduct.

Yli-Viikari and Koiranen had both originally been charged with gross misconduct and misconduct, but the court ruled that the crimes were not serious.

Both defendants had denied all charges.

The verdict “does not prevent” Yli-Viikari from returning as an auditor

The Chief Prosecutor, Mari Mattilatold Yle that while he was pleased that the two defendants were found guilty, he was not happy with the court ‘s decision to just fine the two former officials.

"The most significant in terms of punishment was that the district court convicted Yli-Viikari of maladministration. In the light of this decision, it is necessary to consider whether there is a need to express dissatisfaction with the aspects of the measure and the imposition of the penalty," Mattila said.

The story continues after the picture.

Chief Prosecutor Mari Mattila.Silja Viitala / Yle

He added that the court’s decision only to fine Yli-Viikari means that his verdict does not constitute a legal obstacle to his return to the position of VTV’s auditor.

The office is due to make a decision on Yli-Viikari’s status later.

The use of flight points is not considered embezzlement

The district court dismissed the main allegation of embezzlement against Yli-Viikari in connection with the use of his Finnair bonus points because he had been the legal holder of the flight points in his Finnair Plus account, so the grounds for embezzlement were not met. .

However, the court convicted Yli-Viikar of a lesser charge of using the bonus points, as he found the points to have benefited the state at a cost of about 4,500 euros.

Yli-Viikari and Koiranen were ordered to repay EUR 5,208 to the Audit Office together, and Yli-Viikari will have to pay an additional EUR 5,208 on his own. The court also ordered him to pay more than € 61,000 in damages.

Barber hairdressing expenses led to the investigation

The preliminary investigation into Yli-Viikari’s term as Finland’s supreme auditor began when, according to the media, in the summer of 2020 he had spent about 5,000 euros of public money on hairdressing and beauty services. Separate questions were also asked about the use of Finnair Plus airports.

A subsequent investigation by the Central Criminal Police (NBI) revealed evidence of two years of salary payments made by a VTV official.

Parliament unanimously decided to dismiss Yli-Viikari as auditor in June last year. The decision was the first time that Parliament has fired such a high-ranking official.

Source: The Nordic Page


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