OLAF /07/13 Brussels, 26 November 2007

At today's public meeting of the European Parliament's Committee on Budgetary Control in Brussels, the Director General of the European Anti-Fraud Office (OLAF), Mr Franz-Hermann Brüner, announced that he had requested the European Commission to mandate its Investigatory and Disciplinary Office (IDOC) to carry out an administrative enquiry into allegations concerning the selection procedure for two OLAF directors.

Mr Brüner decided to take this step in order to guarantee the effectiveness and the independence of the European Anti-Fraud Office in light of repeated public attacks from a Member of the European Parliament alleging irregularities in the selection procedure of two directors ("Investigations and operations II" and "Operational and policy support" directorates).

Mr Brüner stated: "The Honourable Member has made it clear that he intends to continue to publicly make his allegations despite the clear and detailed answers we have repeatedly given him. The risk to the overall effectiveness and to the independence of OLAF, if this situation persists, is therefore evident." He continued: "OLAF works with hundreds of investigative partner bodies all over the world. Its operational results in the fight against corruption and fraud as well as the effectiveness of the independence granted to the Office by the legislator are closely linked to our reputation". Mr Brüner concluded: "I have no doubt about the correctness of the procedure leading to the appointment of two of my senior managers but I cannot allow for this campaign against OLAF to continue without reacting. Therefore I have decided to call for an independent enquiry to set things straight."

Alessandro Butticé
Head of Spokesman, Communication and PRUnit
Tel : +32 (0)2 296.54.25
Fax : +32 (0)2 299.81.01
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