Parties involved in sale of farmland to foreigners face prison

Budapest, May 19 (MTI) – People found to be involved in the sale of Hungarian farmland to foreigners before a moratorium on the practice ends in 2014 could face up to five years in prison, Gyula Budai, government commissioner in charge of holding public servants to account, told MTI.

Buyers and sellers, as well as lawyers and notaries involved in the purchase of farmland by foreigners could be sentenced to prison for 1-5 years under the new Penal Code to come into force from June 1, 2013, Budai said. An amnesty will be in place for parties who come forward with such illegal contracts before the law comes into force, he added.

 

It is thought as many as one million hectares of Hungarian farmland has been covertly sold to foreigners.