Airbus denies fraud allegations over Eurofighter deal
Airbus has filed a legal submission to the Vienna Public Prosecutor in response to allegations raised by Austrian Defence Minister Hans Peter Doskozil in relation to a procurement order for Eurofighter jets signed in 2003.
The allegations made by Doskozil were denied by Airbus Defence and Space in the submission made on 19 September.
Airbus is accused of deceiving Doskozil as Eurofighter Jagdflugzeug was neither able to nor willing to deliver the aircraft at the time of the contract’s conclusion in 2003.
The Austrian minister has also accused the companies of not stating the costs separately for the offset transactions to be placed by Eurofighter in the proposal made in 2002.
The allegations were made by the minister during a press conference on 16 February and in his submission of a criminal ‘statement of (alleged) facts’ to the Vienna Public Prosecutor.
Airbus Senior Counsel Dr Peter Kleinschmidt said: “This is a flagrant violation of European principles of the rule of law and of fundamental constitutional principles.
“These accusations are factitious and legally groundless. There was neither any deception nor any error.”
Airbus stated that the aircraft were delivered during the period between July 2007 and September 2009 as specified in the contract.
It also said that there were no costs for offset transactions beyond the lump sum price and, therefore, no such costs were stated.
In 2003, Airbus inked a contract with the Austrian Government for the supply of 18 Eurofighter Typhoon fighter jets. However, Austria downsized the deal to cover 15 jets in 2007.
Image: Eurofighter interceptor on its airbase in Zeltweg, Austria. Photo: courtesy of PUSCH/BMLV.