OLAF INVESTIGATION CONCERNING EU FUNDS IN KOSOVO

Press Release OLAF/04/2002, 30 April 2002

On the basis of information received, the European Anti-Fraud Office (OLAF), decided in April 2002 to open an external investigation in conformity with Art. 5 § 1 of Regulation (EC) No. 1073/1999 in relation to allegations of fraud.

More particularly the investigation involves possible fraud in the electricity sector in Kosovo. The investigation involves the alleged misappropriation of approximately US$ 4.2 million of EU funds.

OLAF intends to carry out its investigation in close co-operation with the competent authorities, the European Agency for Reconstruction (EAR) and the United Nations Mission in Kosovo (UNMIK), who have already indicated their willingness to do so.

This press release has been prepared following numerous requests on the subject by the international media in recent days. The press release is intended to clarify the matter from the OLAF perspective and to avoid possible misunderstandings.

OLAF wishes to make it clear that information obtained in the course of its investigations is protected by the relevant Community and national provisions. It follows that any further comment by OLAF about investigations until these have been concluded would be a breach of the law by the European Anti-Fraud Office.

Mr Alessandro Butticé
Spokesman of the European Anti-fraud Office (OLAF)
Tel : +32 (0)2 296.5425
Fax : +32 (0)2 299.8101

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