10/05/2024 francesoir.fr  28 min 🇬🇧 #248365

Du jamais vu : plusieurs états ont déposé plainte contre von der Leyen. Macron et Renew peuvent-ils continuer à la soutenir ?

What dirty games is the European Prosecutor playing in the complaint against Ursula von der Leyen ? Between offenses and denials of justice...


Xavier Azalbert, France-Soir

What dirty games is the European Prosecutor playing in the complaint against Ursula von der Leyen? Between crimes and denials of justice...

France-Soir, Pixabay

Between torts and denials of justice, the EPPO dispatched to save the soldier Ursula?

On 17 May 2024, a major settlement hearing will be held in Liège in the case involving at least two European countries (Poland and Hungary), several political parties and a number of other individuals who have joined the initial complaint lodged by Belgian lobbyist Frédéric Baldan. A complaint against Ursula von der Leyen for usurpation of titles, destruction of documents, illegal taking of interests and corruption.

France-Soir revealed on 17 and 18 March 2024 that two European countries, Poland and Hungary, had joined the complaint following an investigation into the state of the proceedings. This first report was not picked up until 16 days later by Politico, in an operation more akin to propaganda than news, designed to mislead readers about the fact that the EPPO (European Public Prosecutor Office) had taken over the case.

A hearing that represents a real test for the independence of Belgian justice and respect for the victims. Ursula von der Leyen's legal horizon is darkening, as is the credibility of the EPPO, which is marred by increasingly flagrant irregularities. The full explanations, in a necessarily lengthy article, are detailed below.

EPPO: a legal coup d'état in Europe?

The role of the European Public Prosecutor's Office (EPPO) lies at the heart of this investigation. Clearly, the EPPO is no more than  a glorified version of an agency for cooperation and coordination in the fight against infringements of the European Union budget, in particular intra-Community VAT fraud, and incidentally money laundering and corruption. While these prerogatives seem laudable, its role in this affair is more than questionable.

Launched with great fanfare in 2021, this ‘public prosecutor's office' only has jurisdiction if cases cause damage to the European Union budget. However, France-Soir's investigation led to the discovery of other mechanisms that are more than questionable, as they seem to act against the interests of the citizen, and in this case appear to serve the institution and its members or agents.

As part of the vaccine purchase contracts, the Commission and a dedicated team were tasked with negotiating an APA (advanced purchase agreement) or group purchase option contract on behalf of the Member States. This was a form of interest grouping, the aim of which was to negotiate in a grouped and unified manner, as there is strength in numbers, particularly in terms of purchase prices, at least in theory.

It was later established that the terms of the contract and the prices were not transparent (the contract was opaque and not made available to the public despite numerous requests and proceedings, such as that  brought by the BonSens.org association in France before the Administrative Court and by France-Soir before the European Union Tribunal). The grouping of interests did not provide any real bargaining power, as the prices were not necessarily favorable. Olivier Frot, a doctor of law who analyzed a number of contracts, said: ‘A contract that is so advantageous to the manufacturer seems to me to be abnormal'. Professor Joseph Tritto, a specialist in biological weapons, added: ‘European contracts  show a link with DARPA, the American research department'. Is the EC keen to protect the link between gene therapies and DARPA (the US Defense Advanced Projects Agency) at all costs by not publishing the contracts? Could it be linked to the fact that these gene therapies are licensed to DARPA?

Once the APA had been negotiated, member states contracted directly with vaccine suppliers (Pfizer, Moderna, etc.), and orders were drawn up through successive purchase orders, paid for by the states without any intervention by the EC (European Commission). In fact, Pfizer has taken  Poland and Hungary to court for non-payment, demonstrating that it is the national budget that is affected, not that of the EU.

The interference of Ursula von der Leyen, who was not part of the negotiating team, is another important element in the negotiation and contractualization process. Her SMS exchanges with Pfizer Chairman Albert Bourla are more than problematic: since she had no negotiating powers under the European treaties, in what capacity did she act? In addition to the fundamental question, "In what capacity did she exchange text messages with Albert Bourla? Pfizer's  Jeanine Small, on Albert Bourla's behalf, confirmed the existence of the SMS messages, but gave no details of their content. A  legal action by the BonSens.org association in France and the United States to obtain transparency on the contracts,  contest the jurisdiction clause and obtain the SMS messages narrowly failed on the grounds that proof of the use of these SMS messages in proceedings in France had not been demonstrated. So nothing to do with the actual content of the SMS messages, which are still secret.

Ursula von der Leyen herself confirms that states have contracted with manufacturers

In an interview last week, Ursula von der Leyen answered several questions from Moldovan Valeriu Ghiltechi, candidate for the presidency of the European Commission, during a debate organized by... Politico. A media with an ambivalent role,  whose mix of genres we illustrated in a previous article. On the one hand, they organize these debates, on the other, they provide biased information. The full exchange is reported in note 1.

Ursula von der Leyen assuring of her"transparency"and the "independence of the judiciary", and explained:

"First of all, we have saved lives. We have managed to vaccinate, at least with one injection, 80% of Europeans. We must not forget that. How were these contracts concluded? They have been approved by the Member States. Each Member State had a contract with a pharmaceutical company. They were signed by the Member States, not by the Commission. The money that circulated came from the Member States' money, not from the Commission, not from European money. There is very clear transparency on this subject, and this is currently being discussed.

Ursula von der Leyen has twice stated that contracts are between member states and manufacturers, and do not commit the EU budget.

Many questions about EPPO's competence and role

  • Why is EPPO seeking jurisdiction over this complaint?
  • What role has it really played since the beginning of the investigation?
  • Why did its head, the Romanian Laura Kövesi, recently declare that she had found no suspects?
  • Has EPPO really conducted an investigation?

It's hard to tell! This was confirmed when France-Soir asked questions to the EPPO. The EPPO's obscure, sarcastic comments prevented France-Soir from doing its job, and broke von der Leyen's promise of transparency.

To understand the situation, let's go back to the complaint.

On April 5, 2023, Frédéric Baldan lodged a complaint with the examining magistrate Frédéric Frenay in Liège. An investigation was launched, and someone close to him reported to France-Soir: "the charges are serious", while another explained: "in Belgium, examining magistrates have put people under investigation for less than that", referring to certain investigations carried out by Judge Claise, an examining magistrate close to Judge Frenay, who opposed the EPPO's capture of power, which he felt infringed the prerogatives of examining magistrates in Belgium.

The complaint therefore targets a contract between Belgium and the vaccine manufacturer, as Ursula von der Leyen has made clear. The charges are: usurpation of title, destruction of documents, illegal taking of interest and corruption.

Very soon after the complaint was lodged, between May and early June 2023, EPPO inquired about the case in order to obtain the file, in the person of Jennifer Vanderputten, a Belgian magistrate delegated to EPPO. The first point of interference raises questions: apart from the fact that it is unclear in what capacity Ursula von der Leyen interfered with the APA negotiations, it is also unclear in what capacity EPPO declares itself competent. Jennifer Vanderputten cannot ignore the facts that contracts are signed and settled by the member States with the manufacturer, and therefore do not affect the Union's budget. As such, they fall outside her remit! This doesn't seem to stop her, however, as she persists in issuing indictments without the support of Belgian public prosecutor Frédéric Demonceau. The latter seems to have been invisibilized, or excluded from the case since June 13, 2023, when he wrote to EPPO "this case is now being handled by your services under reference 23EC7". No justification of EPPO's competence seems to have been requested or provided.

Each time we tried to contact him, he was out of the office for several days. On vacation?

Back to Jennifer Vanderputten's role. A Belgian magistrate, she was appointed by the Belgian Public Prosecutor's Office and swore an oath to the King of the Belgians. She was delegated to the EPPO, which places her under the subordination of the chief prosecutor, the Romanian Laura Kövesi, who was not appointed by Belgium, but did not herself take the oath. An obvious breach in the continuity of Belgian legal sovereignty in compliance with the Belgian constitution.

Never mind, the fight against corruption must take precedence. But then on what basis? She inquired about the investigation and the file, since, as we have seen above, contracts do not affect the EU budget! Mystery, and when we ask questions to Tine Hollevoet from the communication department of the EPPO, we are told: "We do not comment on the ongoing investigations" and then "As I told you yesterday, the EPPO has no other information to share on the ongoing judicial investigation into the acquisition of vaccines by the EU. Our point of view did not change overnight" or "I have already told you many times that the EPPO does not comment on ongoing investigations. We won't change our minds, no matter how many times you ask questions. I will continue to send you the same answer. You are asking for details about the investigation that we cannot share, so as not to jeopardize its outcome. »

However, there is some news, as the investigation is now closed. Indeed, the EPPO itself has requested a settlement hearing from the Liège court. But they are not short of any one inconsistency! On the one hand, they are asking for a settlement hearing where all the complainants are summoned on May 17, 2024, and on the other hand, they have said that they do not want to communicate, because the case would be covered by the secrecy of the investigation. The communication manager writes:

"When we have something to communicate publicly about this investigation, we will do so proactively, probably with a press release. The timing will be decided by us, not when you think we should communicate.
All our investigations – just like those of national prosecutors' offices – are tried before national courts, so in the end, a judge will have the final say. »

So, what would be the things to communicate publicly. Aren't a hearing date and closing arguments important information? As well as the fact that Mrs. von der Leyen has been summoned to court, as are Albert Bourla and the Pfizer Inc, in the context of this case.

During the investigation, we also learn that at the beginning of 2024, the EPPO made a request for the inadmissibility of the plaintiff as civil party, without knowing the basis or motivations. The EPPO's would therefore go against the OCRC's investigation and the work of Judge Frenay!

Ursula von der Leyen has taken a lawyer as well as Albert Bourla. Respectively, Mr. Masset of the law firm FLHM, and Mr. Bauwens of the law firm Eubelius.

Is the EPPO really independent?

Above, we have established that Jennifer Vanderputten is subordinated to Chief Prosecutor Laura Kövesi, who herself is appointed on proposal, and reports directly to.... Ursula von der Leyen as President of the Commission. The EPPO declares itself to be independent, but in the context of the procedure, shouldn't it have been much more transparent? In any case, it is worrisome to think that the person who is the subject of the complaint has a direct control relationship with the chief prosecutor. It is all the more worrying to note that she is not able to find any suspects after 18 months, as she declared in front of the European Parliament in April 2024 and in an Arte documentary published in April 2024! Information taken from the EPPO, the first filmed declaration of Laura Kövesi dates to October 2023. Therefore, six months passed before the EPPO made its requisitions. And despite the six elapsed months, there are still no suspects and a request for inadmissibility that comes from nowhere.

So, we continued our investigation into the increasingly questionable role of Jennifer Vanderputten and the deputy head of communication, Tine Hollevoet. A few person speak up :

"Vanderputten knows very well that it is not competent, it has been slow to respond to Judge Frenay on its jurisdiction only to gain time," says a Belgian judicial source close to the case. "EPPO was asked to wait to see if Mrs. von der Leyen was going to leave for NATO or try to stay at the EC."

Ursula von der Leyen  had declared her candidacy for the presidency of the EC on 19 February 2024.

Is this why Laura Kövesi did not find a suspect or Jennifer Vanderputten delayed responding to Judge Frenay? "Vanderputten responded at the beginning of 2024, shortly before von der Leyen declared herself a candidate to succeed him again, less than a month passed between the two dates" our source continues. So as soon as Ursula von der Leyen knew she was not heading for NATO, did she use "her influence" to set the machine in motion to exonerate her just before the elections?

Another person, within the European institution, tells us the obscure role played by Tine Hollevoet: "she is only acting head of communication, and it is clear that her mission is not transparency, but rather to control or withhold information". On her Twitter profile, she is in touch with Politico journalists Carlo Martuscelli and Elisa Braun.  The same ones who did not cite France-Soir as a source for revealing that Poland and Hungary had joined Frédéric Baldan's complaint – as explained below.

On the Belgium en, the Belgian justice system considers that the investigation is very serious. The investigating judges, Claise and Frenay, are very experienced magistrates against corruption and are known for their seriousness and fearlessness. They will therefore have referred the matter to the OCRC (Office for the Control, Repression and Corruption) to complete the investigation into von der Leyen. A source close to the investigation told France-Soir that " the investigation is more than serious, the evidence against him is sufficient for prosecution".

It is indeed a legal imbroglio that is being played out since the Belgian justice system at the service of citizens evaluates the investigation as serious, while the EPPO does not have jurisdiction, evaluates it as "not serious enough" to the point of not finding a suspect, and asks for the inadmissibility of the civil parties. Incredible for an agency that wants to serve the population in order to guarantee trust.

The EPPO is therefore far from being independent as it claims, with at least three people who have very ambivalent positions and are obviously not acting in the interest of the citizens, but in the interest of the administration.

When contacted, OLAF did not prove to be more transparent. In my last exchange with Tine Hollevoet, she began with: "It's been a long time since I've heard from you. (Long time no hear)". Such familiarity is surprising for a public servant. It also shows the interest it has in transparency and due information for readers or voters in Europe. And Tine Hollevoet continues: "I am happy to repeat it here once again, this time in English: the European Public Prosecutor's Office confirms that it has an ongoing investigation into the acquisition of Covid-19 vaccines in the European Union. This investigation is ongoing and until further notice, we will not be releasing any further information on this matter, so as not to jeopardize its outcome. So, persist and sign in incoherence: if there are requisitions, why does the EPPO still say on April 23, 2024, that the investigation continues? (Note 2: questions asked by France-Soir at the EPPO and OLAF).

Did the EPPO really investigate?

Another important question: did the EPPO investigate or was it simply the Belgian investigating judge, Frédéric Frenay, and the OCRC who worked, the EPPO being content to collect only the documents to conclude that it was inadmissible? This Tuesday, May 7, 2024, the confirmation of this hypothesis comes during a request from lawyer Diane Protat who went to the offices of the EPPO in Brussels. With a view to preparing the defense, Mr Protat and his client wanted to access and obtain a copy of the EPPO file on the basis of which the EPPO made its submissions. A normal request.

However, surprisingly, not only will Diane Protat was denied access to the file, but, incredibly, the EPPO called the police! Contacted about this incident, Diane Protat explains that she had a person on the phone of the EPPO while she was on their premises and that this person told her that she did not have a file! She therefore asked this person to come down to stamp her request and write on it that the EPPO did not have a file. Rather than coming downstairs, she was first sent security and then the police! A witness to the scene reports:"the police, called by the EPPO, found that it was abnormal that the file was not given and considered that it was an assault consisting in preventing the exercise of the rights of the defense". Diane Protat explains:"As a result of these unacceptable acts, I have filed a complaint against the EPPO and Mrs. Kövesi with the police inspector, under articles 151 and 152 of the Belgian Criminal Code. In addition, I have today referred the matter to the United Nations in the person of the Special Rapporteur on the independence of judges and lawyers. »

In an email to Jennifer Vanderputten, copied to Frédéric Frenay, the Belgian investigating judge in charge of the various complaints, France-Soir asked the EPPO several questions (Note 3). They have remained unanswered to date. Firstly, who was the person from the EPPO who spoke to Diane Protat ?We also asked for explanations about the case, the requisitions and the potential perjury of the chief prosecutor Laura Kövesi. Indeed, the latter has declared, on two occasions (filmed hearing before Parliament on April 9, 2024 and the Arte film), that it has not found any suspects in this case.

France-Soir's questions on this subject:

  • Now that it has been confirmed that you have had access to Judge Frenay's file, can you confirm that the investigation has not identified any suspects?
  • Or on the contrary, did Mrs. Kövesi lie to the public and to parliamentarians during her hearing?

We also recalled that a false file story has resurfaced: OLAF, a partner of the EPPO,  claimed to have regarding a member of the Commission (Dalli).

The EPPO, through Jennifer Vanderputten and Tine Hollevoet, is therefore playing a more than opaque and questionable role in this case. It is therefore easier to understand their withholding of information.

The media, in support of European federalism, confuse propaganda and journalism

The role of the media is key in this case with Politico waiting 16 days to follow in the footsteps of the revelations of France-Soir of March 17 and 18, 2024 that two countries had joined the complaint filed by Baldan. In a communication operation that looked more like propaganda than information, Politico, without any analysis, declared that the EPPO would have taken over the case. The reader was thus falsely put under the impression that the EPPO was working on the case "in their interest".

In addition, Politico did not credit France-Soir with the primacy of information when their journalists had been alerted to this information by Frédéric Baldan following our article on march 18th. A more than tendentious practice in total contradiction with journalistic ethics. A person inside Politico, on condition of anonymity, explained that Politico did not want to quote France-Soir! Political reasons? Censorship, Omerta.

The fact remains that this act contrary to journalistic ethics sets the tone for the coverage of this legal action by the mainstream media – half omerta, half censorship, and little objective information. And for good reason, there are many links of interest in Brussels that are being protected. Politico, a pro-European federal media, is therefore not seeking to inform, but probably to carry out an operation to guide the reader and thereby serve the European institution. This is not really the role of the fourth power (the media), which should above all tell the truth whatever it costs because of the fundamental right of the reader be in the know.

Act I – the media contribute to disinformation.

But Politico is not the only one! In France, among the mainstream media, only Guillaume Bigot talked about it on CNews. Unfortunately, he took up the biased and incorrect Politico article and therefore contributed to perpetuating the belief, that the European institution is dealing with this issue. A text message was sent to Guillaume Bigot on this subject – without response. Among the so-called alternative media, only Tocsin, Putsch and André Bercoff reported the information objectively.

On social networks, the role played by each person is therefore easy to identify! On the one hand, those who inform, on the other those who are oriented or under constraint and do not talk about the subject. This is a real problem, because the complaint against Ursula von der Leyen and Albert Bourla is "serious" as it touches on the sensitive subject of vaccine contracts and their negotiation by SMS.

It is therefore surprising that during the election period, AFP does not take up this information, which is a first: a sitting president of the EC subject to a penal complaint by many parties... The same goes for the political parties, all of them seem to speak with one voice – silence or omerta and only Florian Philippot of the Patriotes and Nicolas Dupont-Aignan mention this trial.

Act II – not only do the media contribute to disinformation, but many people show their true face or their partisan side by making critical information invisible as the European elections loom on June 9, 2024.

What is likely to happen at the hearing on May 17, 2024?

Contacted by France-Soir, Frédéric Baldan does not wish to comment for the moment, content to prepare for the important hearing on May 17, 2024. France-Soir has learned, however, that new parties have joined the complaint. The office of the investigating judge is being stormed with French victims, an Italian think tank  Generazioni Future, as well as parts of many other countries that seem interested such as Croatia, Spain, Portugal. However, nothing explains the silence of the media.

The settlement hearing should therefore be straightforward unless other pressures arise.

First of all, the intervention of the EPPO appears more and more to be grossly illegal. As the contracts are not provided, nor any proof of payment by the EU, the EPPO does not demonstrate its competence. Their intervention is therefore also an offense.

Will the Justice of Men take precedence over what is akin to an administrative smokescreen formed by the EPPO, which really does not give the impression of having the interests of the victims at the heart of its concerns? The EPPO appears more concerned at asking for the inadmissibility of the victims in order to deprive them of a fundamental and sovereign right. But is it not the purpose of the EPPO to seek whether the representatives of its institutions respect the rules of law, rather than to protect the institutions ?

At the hearing, apart from a last-minute development, the EPPO is expected to plead the inadmissibility of the civil parties without having investigated or provided any of the contracts to demonstrate that the EU would have paid something in this case. The victims will expect the Belgian justice system to respect their rights to be considered as such. A real test of the autonomy and independence of the judiciary in accordance with the Belgian constitution.

In this trial, the stakes are fundamental rights. Values that no political party, even on the left, seems to fight for anymore.

One of the complainants recalls, however, that "the specifications and characteristics of the anti-covid vaccines (side effects, individual efficacy, collective effectiveness, etc.) are still kept secret, even though a very large public has been administered it. What are the contracts hiding? »

It is more than likely that this hearing will lead to a postponement to a later date.

Conclusions – crimes in the service of the denial of justice?

How can one justify the requests for inadmissibility without a case file? The credibility of the EPPO is increasingly tarnished: a legal coup d'état exposed by the determination of the parties to see justice done. This is exactly what the EPPO does not seem to want. The collusion of interests with the President of the Commission is increasingly coming to light.

As a result, in the name of transparency, the EPPO should issue a press release mentioning the hearing of May 17 as well as the basis on which the requisitions were made. And the EPPO will have to face a new complaint.

For Albert Bourla and Pfizer, this may be the beginning of a long descent into hell, especially if Albert Bourla has not declared this procedure to the competent authorities as required by the regulations.

Ursula von der Leyen did not hesitate to declare yesterday in Poland, a country has filed against her, that" Vladimir Putin wants the return of empires and autocracies in Europe. Hasn't Ursula von der Leyen already forcefully fulfilled this prophecy? She also mysteriously failed to comment on the information that AstraZeneca, one of the awardees of the juicy vaccine contracts, withdrew its application for authorization for its vaccine following the conclusion of its study which shows many problems, a benefit for the manufacturer, the risk for the customer.

In any case, Ursula von der Leyen's legal horizon is darkening. Same for all the European commissioners who participated in this legal masquerade. In order to guarantee the rights of the defense, the proper conduct of this case and the transparency she holds high, Ursula von der Leyen should have no choice but to step aside, or be forced to do so.

Unless, of course, her statements on the independence of the judiciary and transparency are just empty words, then the justice system should remind him that "no one is above the law".

Note 1: Excerpt from the exchange between Valeriu Ghiltechi and Ursula von der Leyen

Valeriu Ghiltechi "I would now like to ask Mrs Von der Leyen a question. It is clear that corruption is one of the greatest weaknesses in terms of interference. I am not accusing you of being influenced in this matter by Russia, but my question is the following: Mrs von der Leyen. You have several cases open against you. If you are appointed for a future term, do you commit yourself here to show radical transparency and to cooperate with the prosecutor's office in the cases that have been opened against you? »

Ursula Von der Leyen replies:"Listen, we have a judicial system that is independent and, of course, the judiciary creates the necessary transparency. I respect the independence of our judicial system. »

Valeriu Ghiltechi: "But are you committed to transparency? That was the question. »

Ursula Von der Leyen:" I know what the judicial system does. I am transparent. I am transparent, and it is the judiciary that takes care of it. »

The presenter comes to the support by arbitrarily invoking the far right: "Maybe just to follow up on this, because the far right is using, several parties, including the far right, are using Pfizergate against you in this campaign. Do you regret the way you negotiated these contracts? Look, the subject you mention, the pandemic vaccines? »

UVDL:"First of all, we have saved lives. We have managed to vaccinate, at least with one injection, 80% of Europeans. We must not forget that. How were these contracts concluded? They have been approved by the Member States. Each Member State had a contract with a pharmaceutical company. They were signed by the Member States, not by the Commission. The money that circulated came from the money of the Member States, not from the Commission, not from European money. There is very clear transparency on this subject, and this is currently being discussed.

Note 2 - Questions put to EPPO and OLAF on 23 April 2024

Dear Kirill GELMI & Tine HOLLEVOET,

I am very pleased to receive and read this press release on the operational partnership between OLAF and the European Public Prosecutor's Office. I will prepare an article on this subject, because I think it is an important sign of cooperation.

I read with interest the statement of the Chief Prosecutor of the European Public Prosecutor's Office, Mrs Kövesi: "Organised crime has been growing and growing with fraud against the EU budget for at least a decade. The key question, the only question, is what the European Public Prosecutor's Office and OLAF can achieve together, whether we are effective or not and whether citizens have confidence in our work. And that of the head of OLAF:" Our unwavering cooperation is the deterrent effect we need to protect the EU budget. We know that the success of EU policies depends on the optimal use of every euro of the EU budget. By leveraging their respective strengths, OLAF and the European Public Prosecutor's Office (EPPO) are achieving tangible results for EU citizens. »

This raises a number of questions related to citizens' trust and what the EU budget is

1 – For citizens' trust to be acquired, isn't transparency a sine qua non condition? And if transparency is a prerequisite, how do you decide when and if you should communicate on a subject under investigation?

2 – The press release refers to the "protection of the EU budget" and "the optimal use of every euro of the EU budget".

  • Are Covid vaccine contracts part of the EU budget?
  • Or does the EU only have a mandate to negotiate on behalf of the Member States, leaving the contractualization and payment due to the State level?

3 – If the contracts were at the level of the EU budget, why would Pfizer directly attack Bulgaria and Poland for breach of contract and non-payment?

4 – If the contracts are therefore at the country level

  • How would they affect the EU budget?
  • So how can the European Public Prosecutor's Office declare itself competent when its mandate is "the issue of corruption when it affects the EU budget"?

5 – On what grounds does the European Public Prosecutor's Office consider that it has jurisdiction to hear the complaint lodged by Frédéric Baldan?

6 – In order to ensure trust, why does the European Public Prosecutor's Office not consider it to be in the interest of the general public to be told that it should be

  • whereas the European Public Prosecutor's Office has filed indictments in the Baldan case
  • and that the parties, including Ms von der Leyen, Albert Bourla, Poland and Hungary, have been invited to a hearing in Liège.

  1. If requisitions have been made, this implies that the investigation has been completed and, therefore, how would this prejudice the investigation if the European Public Prosecutor's Office makes a public statement on this matter?

Any delay in raising awareness among the general public can be interpreted as a significant sign of resistance to communication which affects the public's right to be informed and thus discredits the independence of the European Public Prosecutor's Office and OLAF. Would this not be contrary to what is said below? Thank you in advance for your answers.

Note 3: Questions to Mrs. Vanderputten from the EPPO on May 7, 2024, copy to investigating judge Frenay

  1. In an October 2022 press release, you said that you had opened an investigation into the vaccine procurement contracts. The EPPO has an obligation of loyal cooperation towards the national authorities. Can you therefore confirm that you have brought to the attention of Judge Frenay the elements prior to the complaint with civil party application of April 5, 2023?
  2. Mrs. Kovesi has declared, on two occasions (hearing filmed before Parliament on April 9, 2024 and the Arte film), that she has not found any suspects in this case.

  • Is it true that it is confirmed that you had access to Judge Frenay's file, can you also confirm that the investigation has not identified any suspects?
  • Or on the contrary, did Mrs. Kovesi lie to the public and parliamentarians during her hearing? I would like to draw your attention to the story that has resurfaced about a false dossier that OLAF (EPPO's partner in your last press release) claimed to have on a Member of the Commission.  politico.eu

  1. Today, Mr. Protat and his client Mr. Frédéric Baldan went to the EPPO to file a request with your registry given the proximity to the hearing. They wanted to

  • Access and obtain a copy of your file on the basis of which you made your requisitions
  • Obtain a copy of the Royal Decrees by which Mrs. Kövesi and Mrs. Vanderputten are appointed as officers of the Belgian Public Prosecutor's Office
  • Obtaining from the Oath of Loyalty to the King from Mrs. Kövesi and Mrs. Vanderputten
  • Copy of the reports made to the European institutions concerning the existence of a complaint and judicial investigation against the President of the Commission

  1. A witness to the scene told us: "no one wanted to follow up on the request of Mr. Protat, a lawyer, which is well-founded, to provide documents and access to your file." The witness also reports that "the person who introduced himself as a clerk of the EPPO refused to identify himself and claimed that the EPPO did not have any files". Faced with these elements, several questions arise:

  • If this person, the clerk of the EPPO is telling the truth, on what basis did the EPPO issue inadmissible requests?
  • Has the EPPO ruled on the large number of complaints received? Were these complaints or reports? Does the EPPO consider them as victims or witnesses?
  • Who was the EPPO interlocutor who spoke to Mr. Protat?
  • How can the EPPO guarantee the right of the parties to defend themselves if this file is not handed over to the parties who request it?

  1. While Mr. Protat made this request and insisted that the file be handed over to him as any lawyer is entitled to, the EPPO called in security and then the police. This poses several problems:

  • Why did security hinder access to the registry?
  • Isn't Mr. Protat's request legitimate?
  • Why did you call the police for a lawyer?