The European Public Prosecutor’s Office (EPPO) has published its first report, covering the period of July-December 2021. The report identifies numerous suspected criminal cases involving Hungary, but EPPO is unable to investigate them because Hungary has not yet joined it.
EPPO began operations on June 1, 2021, tasked with a mandate to examine crimes of fraud, corruption, and money laundering that have a deleterious effect on the EU budget.
Thus far, only five EU member states have not joined EPPO: Hungary, Poland, Denmark, Sweden, and Ireland. But since the latter three countries are net contributors to the EU budget, their absence from the body does not cause as much consternation as it does with regard to Hungary and Poland, who are net beneficiaries of EU funds.
EPPO’s report shows that it has identified 17 cross-border cases involving Hungary, which is only surpassed by Poland with 23 cases. Among the five non-participating countries, Hungary has by far the most reports of suspected crimes with 28, while Poland is in second place with only nine cases of suspected persons or organizations.
EPPO would be able to investigate these cases immediately if Hungary and Poland had joined it. [Szabad Európa]