1. Manipulation of public procurement tenders at the national level, particularly in agriculture and structural funds with ths usual suspects of bid riggingn kickback payments and conflicts of interests.
  2. Siphoning humanitarian aid.
  3. Research grants (ERC) obtained through forged documents (inflating cvs of participants, exaggerating project sustainability etc.) put forward by companies in member states.
  4. Counterfeit goods smuggled into the EU
  5. Tobacco smuggling

Fraud within EU institutions

  1. Inflated travel expenses claims
  2. Undeclared nepotism (hiring members of extended family)
  3. MEPs siphoning EP grants to foundations linked to political parties
  4. Irregular financing of the national branch of the party through the EP financial allocation to parties

The European Public Prosecutor’s Office is tasked to process possible fraud involving EU funds and projects. The EU Prosecutor’s Office is empowered to investigate and prosecute offences such as fraud relating to EU expenditures and revenues, bribes, misappropriation of EU funds by public officials, value added tax fraud and certain types of money laundering. Yet its annual budget is a paltry €44.9m, nowhere near enough to pay for all the financial investigators and analysts it needs. The Prosecutor’s Office is not fighting an entirely lonely battle. It can draw on the support of the EU’s anti-fraud agency, known as Olaf, and national law enforcement authorities. However, the work of the Prosecutor’s office is not made easier by the fact that five of the EU’s 27 countries — Denmark, Hungary, Ireland, Poland and Sweden — have not joined the Prosecutor’s Office. The absence of Denmark and Ireland, which have opt-outs on EU judicial co-operation, and of Sweden, which promises to sign up soon, is not too worrying. A bigger concern is Hungary and Poland, which are locked in quarrels of their own with the EU over the rule of law. Another problem is the refusal of Janez Jansa, Slovenia’s rightwing populist premier, to approve the prosecutors that his country is supposed to delegate to the Prosecutor’s agency. Tensions are foreseeable between the pan-European remit of the  Prosecutor’s Office and the conception of national sovereignty dear to certain EU governments. One day an investigation may even unearth evidence of abuse of recovery fund money by politicians and their associates. Should that happen, it will be vital for the EU’s credibility that no political interference obstructs the Prosecutors’ work.


Since the EPPO started its operations on 1 June 2021, it has registered more than 1700 crime reports from participating EU Member States and private parties. 300 investigations have been opened, with some crime reports still under evaluation. The damage to the EU budget that is estimated to have occurred as a result of the activities currently under investigation is almost €4.5 billion.



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