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Business

Garbage King Gets Probation, Fine

A Cologne court sentenced the former waste disposal tycoon, Hellmut Trienekens, to two years on probation, and imposed a fine of €10 million ($12 million) for tax evasion. Judge Martin Baur said Trienekens had withheld DM 5.3 million (€2.71 million) in taxes, and added that the sentence was mitigated by the businessman's full confession and poor health. Trienekens was deemed to be too ill with heart disease for the trial to go into detail about his role in the Cologne garbage scandal; instead, the trial centered on tax evasion. Trienekens confessed to having illegally transferred money to a bogus company in Switzerland. He also told prosecutors that some of the money had gone to SPD political campaigns in the Cologne area, where he and two business associates had been awarded construction and waste-management projects.