Some 82,000 people turned up for a Rolling Stones gig in Hamburg in September. Among the delighted fans of the aged rockers were 100 state officials from the district of Hamburg north.
Die Welt reports that the district authorized the Rolling Stones gig and then received 100 gratis tickets with a value of €10,000 from the events company FKP Scorpio.
Tom Oelrichs, the deputy head of the district office, confirmed to Spiegel that they had received the tickets, saying that this has been “standard practice for years in the events industry.”
Prosecutors were tipped off to the case by an anonymous source and suspect that the district broke the law by accepting the complementary tickets.
There are clear rules that prohibit public servants from accepting any gifts in Germany, Die Welt explains. Beyond pens and paper they are not allowed to take any freebies.
The regulations state that the acceptance of gifts “raises the suspicion that public servants are for sale.”
Breach of this law can result in the termination of a contract, or in serious cases a prison sentence.