Qatargate, investigation in Milan on the 300,000 euro ended up in Italy

Tags : European Parliament, Moroccogate, corruption, bribery, Antonio Panzeri, Eva Kaili, Francesco Giorgi,

Qatargate, investigation in Milan on the 300,000 euro ended up in Italy. Tarabella and Kaili remain in prison

The Milan Public Prosecutor’s Office and the Italian Financial Police on the trail of Doha money that left London and Turkey

To whom did the more than three hundred thousand euro that left England and Turkey and arrived in Italy end up in the coffers of Equality, set up by Antonio Panzeri? The investigations of the Milan Finance Police are following the traces left by this substantial and suspicious flow of money and the hypothesis of a system created to recycle and turn over in the country the bribes received by the former MEP arrested in Belgium. On Friday, Milan’s assistant public prosecutor, Fabio De Pasquale, opened an independent file for money laundering, entering two of Equality’s last partners in the register of suspects.

The life of the company set up in Opera (Milan) by the Panzeri family’s accountant Monica Bellini, who is under house arrest following the arrest requested by the Brussels judiciary in the investigation into the bribes received by Antonio Panzeri and his ‘partner’ Francesco Giorgi to bribe members of the European assembly in the shadow of the NGO Fight impunity in favour of Qatar, Morocco and Mauritania, is short-lived but intense.

Partners Bellini (5%), Giorgi’s father and brother, Luciano (70%) and Stefano (20%), Equality Consultancy was founded in December 2018 to close in June 2021 after a running change of the corporate structure with the exit of the Giorgi family and the entry of Manfred Forte and Dario Vittorio Scola. The last two are the people under investigation by the prosecutor De Paquale, while Bellini is under house arrest at her home in Opera as part of the Brussels investigation.

Equality’s corporate purpose, among other things, is to ‘develop networks between different actors, NGOs, business organisations and counterparts in third countries’. The first balance sheet closed in 2019 with €240,000 in revenue and €102,000 in profit, the one for the following year with €75,000 in revenue and a loss of €51,000: so a total of just over €300,000 that would have been invoiced, according to the investigation, to three English companies and a Turkish one. The money laundering investigation to be opened by Milan’s Deputy Prosecutor Fabio De Pasquale will work on this.

The latter has received a report from the men of the judicial police section of the Fiamme Giorgi with whom he will investigate the Italian aspects of the Brussels investigation that led on 9 December to the arrest of, among others, Panzeri, Giorgi and the latter’s partner, the former vice-president of the European Parliament Eva Kaili.

It was Giorgi who revealed Equality’s function to Belgian judge Michel Claise when he put on record that, instead of continuing to receive the cash from Qatar, Panzeri ‘thought it was preferable to create a structure’ through which ‘to manage the flow of money in a legal way’. He turned to Bellini who, Claise notes, thus ‘played an important role in the repatriation of the cash’. Equality ‘provided services to a company based in England’ which, Giorgi says, was referred to by a certain ‘Palestinian’ and referred to a certain ‘Hakan’. Giorgi, who was the only one who spoke English, kept contact between Hakan, Bellini, Panzeri and his daughter Silvia, who ‘prepared the documents as a lawyer’. After deciding to cooperate with the Belgian judiciary, Panzeri admitted that he and Giorgi received 2.6 million from Qatar, Morocco and Mauritania.

Meanwhile, the Belgian-Italian MEP Marc Tarabella, arrested in Brussels in the Qatargate investigation, remains in prison. The Brussels Council Chamber decided to extend his detention by another month. « We will continue to fight to get an innocent man out of prison because, let’s remember it, Marc Tarabella is innocent and has never received money or gifts in exchange for his opinion, » say the MEP’s lawyers. While Eva Kaili, the former Vice-President of the EU Parliament, will remain in prison for another two months.


#Qatargate #Moroccogate #European_Parliament #Corruption #Bribery #Antonio_Panzeri #Eva_Kaili #Francesco_Giorgi #Andrea_Cozzolino #Marc_Tarabella