PRESS RELEASE No 03/2017
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Assessing the progress made on recent investigations, as well as identifying means to strengthen the prosecution of cases of fraud affecting the EU financial interests, topped the agenda of the meeting that Dr. Péter Polt, Prosecutor General of Hungary held with Mr. Giovanni Kessler, Director-General of the European Anti-Fraud Office (OLAF), during Mr. Kessler's mission to Hungary this week.
The Prosecution Service of Hungary has been cooperating with OLAF on a number of investigations in recent years, with regular high-level meetings as well as continuous consultations leading to positive results in the fight against fraud involving EU funds.
“We have a good relationship with the Office of the Hungarian Prosecutor General, whom we are closely working with on important investigations," the OLAF Director-General said. "We count on the Prosecutor General’s continued efforts in investigating fraud and corruption affecting the EU’s financial interests and in prosecuting these cases, thus ensuring that the persons responsible are held accountable for their actions,” he added.
Dr. Péter Polt emphasized that OLAF is an important partner for Hungarian judicial authorities in the detection of crimes affecting the financial interests of the EU. The Hungarian Prosecution Service ordered criminal investigations to be opened as a follow-up to all OLAF recommendations and signals, and where criminal investigations were already ongoing OLAF recommendations were made part of and assessed in connection with the investigation files. Criminal investigations led to indictments in five cases, and out of these cases there is one so far where the court has delivered a final convicting judgment. Criminal investigations are going on in twenty-three cases.
OLAF is the only EU body mandated to detect, investigate and stop fraud with EU funds. OLAF carries out administrative investigations, and can recommend different actions to recover the money fraudulently spent. If an OLAF investigation uncovers a possible criminal offence, OLAF will send its final report to the country's Prosecution Service to recommend consideration of judicial follow-up according to national law.
In addition, OLAF may assist national authorities in their own investigations, and it also coordinates cases of transnational fraud, which involve several states, both in the EU and beyond.
Budapest, 9th February 2017
Dr. Péter Polt
Dr. Giovanni Kessler
Meeting between OLAF Director-General Giovanni Kessler and Hungarian Prosecutor General, Péter Polt
- Publication date
- 9 February 2017
- European Anti-Fraud Office
- News type
- OLAF press release