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Tuesday, May 28, 2024

European Parliament, corruption scandal. Marc Tarabella from Belgium detained

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MEP Marc Tarabella was arrested on Friday morning as part of an investigation into a corruption scandal at the European Parliament. The Belgian politician had previously been stripped of his immunity, as requested by the court.

Belgium’s public broadcaster VRT reported that “an important new step has been taken in the investigation into the bribery scandal in the European Parliament: this morning the police arrested the Walloon socialist Marc Tarabella.” “This is confirmed by the federal prosecutor’s office. At the moment he is to be questioned. The investigating judge will decide later whether he will be arrested,” it was reported on Friday afternoon.

“The arrest is a logical new step in the investigation into the corruption scandal in the European Parliament, as last week during the plenary session the green light was given for the repeal parliamentary immunity to Tarabella and Italian Andrea Cozzolino– added VRT.

Belgian Marc Tarabella PAP/EPA/OLIVIER HOSLET

The effect of the corruption scandal

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The request for waiver of immunity came from a Belgian court and is part of an investigation into alleged corruption in the European Parliament.

Earlier, Tarabella had been expelled from the European Social Democrats group along with Cozzolino. They were also suspended from their national parties.

Both MPs maintain that they did not take bribes, but did not object to the waiver of their immunity. Tarabella also previously said he would cooperate with the investigation and would not speak to the press about the affair.

Vote to lift Italian Andrea Cozzolino’s immunity PAP/EPA/OLIVIER HOSLET

Tarabella is one of the names mentioned by former Italian MEP Pier Antonio Panzeri, one of the suspects in the scandal.

Panzeri has been suspected since late last year of involvement in a criminal organization as a leader, money laundering and corruption.

Last month, Panzeri reached an agreement with the federal prosecutor’s office: in exchange for leniency, he will help the Belgian judiciary in the investigation. Panzeri has already said that he has given Tarabella from 120,000. up to 140 thousand euros, but Tarabella denies these allegations.

Main photo source: PAP/EPA/OLIVIER HOSLET

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