Police in the Czech Republic have recommended that charges be filed against Prime Minister Andrej Babiš and several others in a case involving the alleged misuse of EU funds.
Czech police “ended the investigation” and the file “was submitted to the public prosecutor, together with a motion to bring an indictment,” said a spokesperson for the Municipal Public Prosecutor’s Office in Prague.
“The prosecutor will now study the file in detail and then decide to file the indictment or settle the case differently,” the spokesperson added.
The Czech prime minister, who has repeatedly rejected allegations of wrongdoing in the so-called Stork’s Nest case, did not respond to a request for comment.
If convicted in the case — in which it is alleged that Babiš illegally accepted €2 million in EU subsidies related to a farm and convention center — the prime minister could face several years in jail.
The EU’s anti-fraud agency, OLAF, found irregularities in the Stork’s Nest case, and the European Commission is in the process of preparing a report on a possible conflict of interest involving Babiš. Late last year, the European Parliament adopted a resolution raising concerns about conflict of interest and the use of EU money in the Czech Republic.
Babiš is a member of the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe (ALDE), and the case has become part of a broader political debate among rival groups in the upcoming European Parliament election.
“If Andrej Babiš is found guilty it would completely undermine the integrity of the EU to have a sitting Prime Minister convicted for subsidies fraud,” Philippe Lamberts, president of the Greens/EFA group in the European Parliament, said in a statement. “It’s pathetic the lengths that Guy Verhofstadt, Emmanuel Macron and the ALDE group will go to in order to defend their favourite oligarch.”
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