EU corruption scandal: Eva Kaili denies involvement after 1.5 million euros in cash seized

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Greek MEP Eva Kaili has denied involvement in an alleged bribery scandal involving World Cup host Qatar at the European Parliament, in.gr has reported.

“Her position is that she is innocent. She has nothing to do with financing from Qatar, nothing, explicitly and unequivocally,” her lawyer, Michalis Dimitrakopoulos, told Greek TV on Tuesday.

Police in Belgium seized more than 1.5 million euros in cash in the Brussels homes of MEP Kaili and former Italian MEP Pier Antonio Panzeri.

As reported by Belgian daily Le Soir, federal police found around 600,000 euros in Panzeri’s home. The remainder was found in Kaili’s home, which she shared with her life partner Francesco Giorgi, as well as in the possession of her father, Alexandros Kailis.

Picture of the cash seized. Photo: Le Soir.

“Part of the money you showed in the photos belonged to Ms Kaili,” Mr Dimitrakopoulos said.

“But she was not alone. Her partner was also there and he will give explanations about how the money was found there.”

This comes as the Plenary of the European Parliament in Strasbourg on Tuesday decided to terminate the term of office of Kaili as vice-president and strip her of her duties. The vote was passed with 625 in favour, one vote against and two abstentions.

“In view of the ongoing investigations, the European Parliament has decided that Eva Kaili is no longer one of its Vice-Presidents,” European Parliament President Roberta Metsola said on Tuesday on Twitter.

“This decision is effective immediately. We will continue to fully cooperate with relevant national law enforcement and judicial authorities.”

Four people imprisoned in this case, including Kaili, will appear before a preliminary investigating magistrate to testify on Wednesday. A decision will then be taken on whether to detain them pending trial.

Source: Ekathimerini and in.gr.

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