Trial for infidelity – Tons of missing vegetables keep the court busy

Three ex-employees of a food company are said to have diverted and resold over 100,000 euros in fruit and vegetables. The company itself noticed this very late. In the end, there is little left of the accused avocados, peppers, etc. in the Vienna regional court.

Room 33 in the Vienna Regional Court – where judges become bean counters and defense lawyers clean up a fruit salad with a wad of cash. Specifically, it’s about tons of fruit and vegetables that a food company lacks. The total damage: 100,000 euros. Suspects in the infidelity case are three ex-employees of the company who have now been in the dock for the second day. Tons of missing food went unnoticed. Already on the first day of the trial, judge Claudia Zöllner was amazed at how, from January 2023 to May 2023, neither the managing director nor the accountant could notice that so much food was missing. “If I sell 600 boxes of peppers a week and 100 boxes are stolen, then I won’t notice,” he tries to justify. He demonstrates how he came to the suspected damage of over 100,000 euros in the witness stand and starts picking up boxes of avocados , counting peppers and tomatoes in pictures taken by a private detective. “To be honest, those are too many numbers and too many vegetables and fruit for me,” says Ms. Rat quickly. And demands from the defendants who keep speaking out: “I need peace and quiet when I’m counting beans.” However, the fact that the three defendants are responsible for the complete loss of food remains a guess. Only four attacks by two of the men can be proven – the private detective photographed them. Two former colleagues were also no longer seen. So there is a short trial in court: even the public prosecutor demands an acquittal of the majority of the charges. For defense attorney Philipp Winkler’s client, it affects all points. The two other former employees admitted from the start that they had embezzled fruit and vegetables four times. You get away with a two-year probationary period, 200 euros in flat-rate costs and a total compensation for damages of 6,000 euros. “To finally clean up this fruit salad,” the defense attorneys Alexander Philipp and Mirsad Musliu immediately handed over the money in cash.
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