- Title: Romanian anti-graft crusader to become first EU fraud prosecutor
- Date: 19th September 2019
- Summary: BUCHAREST, ROMANIA (FILE - FEBRUARY 28, 2018) (REUTERS) KOVESI AND ROMANIAN PRESIDENT KLAUS IOHANNIS STANDING FOR NATIONAL ANTHEM AT PRESENTATION OF ANTI-CORRUPTION AGENCY'S (DNA) ANNUAL REPORT PHOTOGRAPHER TAKING PHOTO
- Embargoed: 3rd October 2019 17:35
- Keywords: Laura Codruta Kovesi Romania corruption EU fraud prosecutor appointed Viorica Dancila
- Location: BUCHAREST, ROMANIA AND BRUSSELS, BELGIUM
- City: BUCHAREST, ROMANIA AND BRUSSELS, BELGIUM
- Country: Romania
- Topics: European Union,Government/Politics
- Reuters ID: LVA005AXBRF3T
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Romania's former anti-corruption chief Laura Codruta Kovesi is set to become the European Union's first fraud prosecutor despite opposition from Bucharest after most member states backed her in an informal secret ballot on Thursday (September 19).
Kovesi, who won a reputation as a tough anti-graft crusader in Romania before the government sacked her in July last year, had already secured support for the post in the new European Public Prosecutor's Office from the European Parliament.
Romanian Prime Minister Viorica Dancila told reporters on Wednesday (September 18) that the Romanian ambassador had been mandated to vote against Kovesi's appointment.
Speaking to reporters on Thursday, Dancila warned that if Kovesi's image was affected by internal inquiries against her, it could negatively impact on Romania.
Romanian President Klaus Iohannis, who has repeatedly criticized the Social Democrats for undermining the rule of law, said the vote was an important victory for Romania.
The EU Council will hold a formal vote in the coming weeks which is expected to confirm the appointment.
The EU plans to set up the European Public Prosecutor's Office next year to tackle corruption, value-added tax fraud and other crimes involving the bloc's multi-billion-euro budget. Twenty-two EU countries have signed up to the project.
(Production: Lewis Macdonald, Louisa Naks)
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