Croatian Economy Minister Radimir Cacic was convicted in Hungary on charges related to a fatal traffic accident and received a three-year suspended jail sentence.
Hungarian judge Krisztina Kostyak said Cacic, 63, was guilty of speeding and causing the accident on a highway in Hungary in January 2010, in which two Hungarian citizens died.
Cacic has sought to attract foreign investment, which Croatia needs to recover after two years of recession and a period of stagnation in 2011. The Adriatic Sea nation is set to become the European Union’s 28th member in July 2013.
Cacic heads the Croatian People’s Party, the second-most influential party in the six-month-old ruling coalition led by Prime Minister Zoran Milanovic’s Social-Democrats.
Milanovic said earlier this week it would be up to Cacic to decide whether he would stay in the government, following the verdict. Cacic has said he would leave his post if the sentence includes physical jail time.
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