A Rolling Stones concert has become the centre of a corruption scandal with high-ranking officials and politicians already on substantial salaries accused of illegally accepting free tickets to watch the legendary band.
The Stones concert was held in Hamburg on 9th September 2017 in a city park in the German city of Hamburg but continues to make headlines across the country.
According to local media, the public prosecutor’s office has now announced that an official corruption investigation has been opened against nine high-ranking city officials in connection with the receipt of free tickets.
The alleged ring-leader is local district chief Harald Roesler of the social-democratic SPD party, who is reportedly being investigated for corruption.
Eight others are being investigated for allegedly accepting illegal benefits, as instead of buying Stones tickets like every other fan they got their tickets through Roesler, with some of the tickets reportedly being handed out for free and others at highly discounted prices.
According to local media the other city officials being investigated are Hamburg state councillor and urban development authority chief Matthias Kock, state councillor and transport authority chief Andreas Rieckhof, planetarium director Thomas Kraupe, labour museum director Rita Mueller, Hamburg airport managers Michael Eggenschwiler and Alexander Laukenmann, cemetery chief Carsten Helberg, and directors Wilfried Wendel and Sven Wittstock of municipal housing company SAGA.
Investigations had already been opened against state councillor Elke Badde, who was Roesler’s superior, as well as against Roesler’s elected successor Yvonne Nische.
Roesler, 68, has retired since the Rolling Stones gig.
According to local media, the case is noteworthy given the already lavish salaries all public officials are paid.
The two state councillors receive a salary of 12,517.01 EUR (11,250.91 GBP) a month, while airport chief Michael Eggenschwiler for example earns 500,633 EUR (449,994 GBP) a year.