AcasăEurope NewsEPPO conducts searches in Bucharest over Covid-19 medical equipment fraud

EPPO conducts searches in Bucharest over Covid-19 medical equipment fraud

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The European Public Prosecutor’s Office (EPPO) carried out on Tuesday five searches in Bucharest as part of an investigation into an EUR 8 million fraud with EU funds for the purchase of medical equipment during the COVID-19 pandemic, the EPPO announced in a statement.

In the period 2020 – 2022, a criminal network was formed to manipulate the public procurement of protective masks, disinfectants and other medical supplies for hospitals, schools and other municipal state facilities, so as to benefit predetermined suppliers, which are understood to have been part of the scheme. Three individuals under investigation have been brought to the EPPO’s office in Bucharest to be informed of their status as suspects.

The supply of the medical equipment was funded by the programme Recovery assistance for cohesion and the territories of Europe (REACT-EU). It is estimated that the activities documented so far in the investigation caused the EU budget a damage of over EUR 8 million. The investigation is ongoing, in order to ascertain the extent of the suspected criminal activities and the overall financial damage caused.

The investigation and the searches are conducted with the support of the EPPO Support Structure in Romania, the Romanian Police – Special Operations Directorate, Romania’s Anti-Corruption General Directorate, and the Special Intervention Brigade of the Romanian Gendarmerie.

AGERPRES

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