The home of Austria's former far-right vice-chancellor Heinz-Christian Strache was raided as part of a bribery investigation, a further potential headache for ex-chancellor Sebastian Kurz as he seeks re-election, according to media reports on Tuesday, August 13th.
Strache stepped down as vice-chancellor and leader of the far-right Freedom Party (FPOe) in May over the so-called "Ibiza-gate" affair, which also ended up bringing down Kurz and his coalition government, according to AFP.
However, the raid is not related to that scandal. This new one could further hurt Kurz's People's Party (OeVP), which has been widely expected to once again emerge as the single strongest party, in the September 29th polls.
In the latest investigation, prosecutors are probing whether a company appointment was made in return for the promise of granting gambling licenses, a spokesman for the Public Prosecutor's Office against Corruption said.
Austrian media named Strache among those involved. The Standard daily reported the OeVP had signed off on the appointment of the FPOe official to the casino developer and manager.
"The new party leadership, and the FPOe are not connected to this in any way," the party said in a statement.
Strache, who is still an FPOe member but no longer holds any party functions, is already under investigation over hidden camera recordings that were made on the resort island of Ibiza in 2017.