4 Charged in EU Parliament Corruption Investigation

    4 Charged in EU Parliament Corruption Investigation
    Last updated Dec 12, 2022
    Image credit: Getty Images [via BBC]


    • Belgian authorities on Sunday announced they had charged four people with corruption, money laundering, and participation in a criminal organization as part of a major investigation into alleged bribes from "a Gulf state" to current and former members of the European Parliament.[1]
    • Prosecutors searched 16 houses and confiscated 600K euros ($631.8K) in Brussels on Friday, with six people being initially detained and two released without charges. A source close to the case alleged that the "Gulf state" trying to meddle in EU decisions is Qatar.[2]
    • Though the names of those indicted haven't been released, the European Parliament has suspended the powers and duties of Greek official Eva Kaili, one of its vice presidents. Her socialist PASOK party has also stated that it's expelling Kaili from its ranks.[3]
    • As investigators allege that the "Gulf state" has been influencing economic and political decisions for months, namely by targeting aides, the Qatari government has denied all accusations. Kaili's duties as a vice president included a portfolio for the Middle East, in which she recently praised Qatar's labor rights record.[4]
    • Those initially detained and questioned also include: Kaili's father, Alexandros; Kaili's life partner and aide, Francesco Giorgi; newly-elected chief of the International Trade Union Confederation, Luca Visentini; and former MEP Pier Antonio Panzeri. The identity of the sixth person remains unknown.[1]
    • This comes as the Parliament was due to vote this week on extending visa-free travel to the EU from Kuwait, Qatar, Oman, and Ecuador. Some suggested the vote should be postponed, and others have suggested conducting a debate on the corruption raids.[5]


    Establishment-critical narrative

    While this may be the most blatant and grand corruption scheme to hit the European Parliament to date, it shouldn't come as a surprise. The Parliament is in charge of not only policing the EU but of monitoring itself, which is why they have yet to create the ethics board they voted to approve over a year ago. Maybe this outrageous international fraud scandal will finally encourage the EU "watchdogs" to fulfill their ethical duties.

    Pro-establishment narrative

    This news is sickening to those who care about the integrity of Europe's institutions, which is why the EU has suspended Kaili from her duties and is thoroughly investigating the matter. Ministers are working diligently to broker deals with rising nations like Qatar, but that doesn't mean they'll allow such a blatant disregard for the rules to go unpunished. Anti-corruption measures will be implemented.

    Establishment split



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