The Netherlands will join EU fraud prosecution office after all

The Netherlands will sign up to the new European public prosecutors office to focus on fraud involving EU subsidies after all, according to the new government’s coalition agreement.

‘Participation in the European public prosecutor’s office will facilitate cooperation to tackle fraud with EU money,’ the document states. ‘The cabinet will take a decision in the coming cabinet period about when the Netherlands will join up.’

The previous administration opted out of joining the EPPO, which will be able to launch criminal probes and prosecute individuals in subsidy fraud cases, saying it represented a further shift of power to Brussels.

Supporters of the EPPO say every year at least €50bn in value added tax is lost due to cross-border crimes and argue that the EPPO will take the EU’s fight against crime to a new level, beyond mere cooperation.

Some 20 EU countries agreed to set up the EPPO last year.