Meinl Muddle

Julius Meinl V, head of one of Austria's most prestigious banking and retail dynasties, is pending trial for fraud, in what's being billed as one of the most controversial cases of the decade.

Mr Meinl has already endured the indignity of a spell behind bars following his arrest in April. However, he was bailed out by a friend, at the astronomical sum of 100 million Euros - a record figure.

Prosecutors claim that Meinl duped share-holders at his family bank, yet the owner claims that he is a scapegoat for Austria's recession, and that all is above board.

Mr Meinl has duel British citizenship as his grandfather fled to England in 1938 with the coming of the Nazis. Julius Meinl III, who's wife was of Jewish descent, was a staunch anti-Nazi, and his son fought in the RAF against the Luftwaffe.

Meinl told British newspaper The Daily Telegraph that he is "the most hated man in Austria," but he protests his innocence.


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