They chose Laura Kovesi as European Chief Prosecutor
By secret ballot, MEPs from the Civil Liberties Committee elected Laura Codruta Kövesi for the post of European Chief Prosecutor, informed Bilyana Tzarnoretchka, PR at the Bulgarian EP office.
The ranking of the three candidates was determined by a vote in the committee on Wednesday. Laura Kovesi of Romania was elected as the leading candidate with 26 votes, Jean-Francois Bonner of France received 22 votes and Andres Ritter from Germany received 1 vote.
Yesterday, the candidates were heard by MEPs at a meeting organized by the Committee on Civil Liberties, which also includes the Committee on Budgetary Control.
The European Chief Prosecutor, who will head the European Public Prosecutor's Office, will be appointed by common accord of the European Parliament and the Council.
The result of the vote in the Committee on Civil Liberties, together with the recommendation of the Committee on Budgetary Control, which also supported Ms Kövesi during a vote on Tuesday, will be sent to the EP's Conference of Presidents. The members of the Conference of Presidents (EP President and political group leaders) will decide on the next steps on 7 March, before negotiations with the Council.
The European Public Prosecutor's Office, which is expected to be operational by the end of 2020, will be an independent body responsible for investigating, prosecuting and bringing to justice crimes against the EU budget: fraud, corruption or cross-border fraud with a VAT of more than EUR 10 million. The list of crimes can be extended in the future to include, for example, terrorism.
So far, 22 Member States have joined the European Public Prosecutor's Office. The five countries that are not currently participating - Sweden, Hungary, Poland, Ireland and Denmark - can join at any time.
The European Public Prosecutor's Office will be located in Luxembourg, along with the Prosecutor General and the Prosecutor's College of all participating countries. They will be at the forefront of the day-to-day criminal investigations carried out by authorized prosecutors in all participating Member States.
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