Tuesday

19th Jun 2018

Member states 'endorse' EU-wide public prosecutor

  • The EU wants its own public prosecutor to tackle fraud (Photo: euukrainecoop)

A majority of member states are said to back a proposal for a European public prosecutor after they failed to meet a deadline to submit counter arguments.

Member state national parliaments had until Monday (28 October) midnight to submit any complaints or concerns on setting up a EU-wide prosecutor tasked to tackle fraud committed against the EU budget.

Read and decide

Join EUobserver today

Support quality EU news

Get instant access to all articles — and 18 year's of archives. 30 days free trial.

... our join as a group

“A clear majority of member states have not issued reasoned opinions and can thus be counted among the probable participants to the European public prosecutor's office,” Mina Andreeva, European commission justice spokesperson, said in an email on Tuesday.

A minimum of nine member states is needed to launch the office.

Monday’s missed deadline means 17 have now demonstrated tacit support with only 11 member states opposed.

Parliaments in Cyprus, Czech Republic, France, Hungary, Ireland, Malta, the Netherlands, Romania, Slovenia, Sweden, and the UK, issued the complaints.

Both the UK and Ireland, along with Denmark, already said they would not participate when they opted out of the idea during talks on the EU's Lisbon Treaty.

Andreeva said with the member state positions clarified, EU lawmakers would now push forward with the proposal, first announced in July, with an aim to have it launched in 2015.

The prosecutor would have the power to conduct, prosecute, and bring to justice its own EU-wide investigations in co-ordination with member state authorities against people suspected of defrauding the EU.

Its initial role to tackle EU fraud could later be expanded to other areas.

The commission claims the office is needed to tackle wide-spread fraud on the EU budget which they estimate hovers around €500 million in annual losses.

A top EU official in September told the European Parliament that the real figure is in the billions, however.

A majority of deputies at the Strasbourg plenary last week voted in favour of a report by Italian centre-right MEP Salvatore Iacolino.

Iacolino’s report covered a wide number of crime fighting issues, including setting up the office, although the Greens voiced reservations of its law-enforcement centric focus.

Investigation

UK unlawfully copying data from EU police system

The British government is abusing EU travel security systems, making and using illegal copies of outdated information, and putting innocent people at risk of being red-flagged.

GDPR - a global 'gold standard'?

The new EU privacy rules are touted as a global 'gold standard' - but Mexico's former data commissioner warns some nations are far from ready.

Feature

EU and Turkey fight for 'lost generation'

Some 300,000 school-age Syrian children in Turkey are not enrolled in classes. Fears they may end up in sweatshops or forced to beg have triggered efforts by the EU, Unicef, and the Turkish government to keep them in school.

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. Mission of China to the EUJointly Building Belt and Road Initiative Leads to a Better Future for All
  2. Macedonian Human Rights MovementMHRMI Launches Lawsuits Against Individuals and Countries Involved in Changing Macedonia's Name
  3. IPHRCivil society asks PACE to appoint Rapporteur to probe issue of political prisoners in Azerbaijan
  4. ACCASocial Mobility – How Can We Increase Opportunities Through Training and Education?
  5. Nordic Council of MinistersEnergy Solutions for a Greener Tomorrow
  6. UNICEFWhat Kind of Europe Do Children Want? Unicef & Eurochild Launch Survey on the Europe Kids Want
  7. Nordic Council of MinistersNordic Countries Take a Stand for Climate-Smart Energy Solutions
  8. Mission of China to the EUChina: Work Together for a Better Globalisation
  9. Nordic Council of MinistersNordics Could Be First Carbon-Negative Region in World
  10. European Federation of Allergy and AirwaysLife Is Possible for Patients with Severe Asthma
  11. PKEE - Polish Energy AssociationCommon-Sense Approach Needed for EU Energy Reform
  12. Nordic Council of MinistersNordic Region to Lead in Developing and Rolling Out 5G Network

Join EUobserver

Support quality EU news

Join us