Commission denies cooperation difficulties with top EU prosecutor
European Chief Prosecutor Laura Codruța Kövesi had complained about a lack of information from the EU executive’s departments.
The European Commission denied Friday having any issues working with the European Public Prosecutor’s Office (EPPO), after its head called out a lack of cooperation from European Union institutions.
In an interview with POLITICO, European Chief Prosecutor Laura Codruța Kövesi said that EPPO "didn’t receive a lot of information" from the Commission’s internal departments, and that her office, which is charged with discovering and prosecuting crimes that involve EU funds, is in the process of setting up bilateral meetings to understand why.
Kövesi also complained that the "number of the reports that we have received from European institutions are very low,” referring to tip-offs or alerts from EU officials.
But Christian Wigand, the Commission spokesperson for justice, equality and rule of law, said that relations with EPPO were good, in answer to a question asked by POLITICO.
"I think, overall, we can say that we cooperate very well with the EPPO, and have done a lot of work to set it up and ensure that it has proper funding," said Wigand during the Commission’s daily press briefing.
Unprompted, the spokesperson also said that the Commission was not exercising any undue influence on the prosecution office.
"When it comes to investigations, the EPPO is of course fully independent," he said.
Asked whether EPPO had questioned Commission President Ursula von der Leyen as part of its investigation into the EU’s vaccine procurement, European Commission Deputy Chief Spokesperson Dana Spinant said that the Commission still had "no information" into what EPPO’s investigation was about.