What would EU Public Prosecutor proposals mean for non-participating Member States?

24 March 2014


The House of Lords Justice, Institutions and Consumer Protection EU Sub-Committee kicks off its new inquiry into the role of the proposed new European Public Prosecutor’s Office (EPPO) on Wednesday 26 March, when it will question two Professors of European Criminal Law.

At 3.50pm, the Committee will have the opportunity to quiz:

  • Professor Dr Katalin Ligeti, Professor of European and International Criminal Law, Luxembourg University; and
  • Professor Valsamis Mitsilegas, Head of the Department of Law, Professor of European Criminal Law and Director of the Criminal Justice Centre, Queen Mary, University of London.

In July last year, the European Commission published its proposal to establish a European Public Prosecutor’s Office (EPPO), to be a “body of the Union”, with a separate legal personality.  It would be responsible for investigating, prosecuting and bringing to justice both the perpetrators and accomplices involved in committing criminal offences affecting the European Union's finances.

However, the Coalition Agreement, signed by the Government in 2010, indicated that the UK will not opt-in to the EPPO proposal and, under the European Union Act 2011, could not do so unless a referendum was held.

The Committee will question the witnesses on issues including how the EPPO would work, as proposed by the Commission; what potential problems they foresee due to the fact that the current draft of the proposal takes no account of non-participating Member States like the UK; the resource implications of the proposed EPPO for Europol, non-participating Member States and others; and if the EPPO comes into existence, what the necessary steps would be to protect non-participating Member States’ positions.

The evidence session will take place on Wednesday 26 March at 3.50pm in Committee Room 1.

The session will be webcast at www.parliamentlive.tv and is also open to the public. Journalists wishing to attend should go to Parliament’s Cromwell Green Entrance and should allow time for security screening.

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