SP Success: Netherlands will oppose establishment of EU Office for Public Prosecutions

6 July 2016

SP Success: Netherlands will oppose establishment of EU Office for Public Prosecutions

Foto: SP

A parliamentary majority today decided that the Netherlands should oppose setting up a European Office for Public Prosecutions. This is a victory for SP Member of Parliament Michiel van Nispen, who has opposed the move from the start. “Fraud involving European money must be combatted effectively, but an EU Public Prosecutor is undesirable. Such an office is unnecessary for mutual cooperation and thus redundant. This can be achieved by making sound agreements. An EU Public Prosecutor would, moreover, lead to further transfers of powers. I’d rather cooperate to fight crime and retain the power at home to determine our priorities in the pursuit and prosecution of criminals.”

According to Van Nispen, aside from simply improving existing forms of judicial cooperation, alternatives exist for tackling and preventing fraud involving EU subsidies. “So there’s no need to set up an EU Office for Public Prosecutions,” he argues. “Moreover such a move would create the risk that ever more powers would in time be transferred. I find that undesirable.”

The Netherlands’ own Office for Public Prosecutions, has recently expressed concern over the establishment of an EU equivalent. It fears that ever more capacity would be demanded of the Netherlands’ Public Prosecutor, which is already stretched. Detection would become more complex if they have to deal not only with the police but with a European office. This is another clear signal that we shouldn’t be making a start on this, in Van Nispen’s view. ‘Now a parliamentary majority is against it, I’ll be keeping a close eye on whether the Minister for Security and Justice transmits this clear signal to his colleagues in Brussels,” he says “Fraud must be combatted, but through cooperation and maintaining control of our own fight against crime.”

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