Qatargate: Panzeri's wife and daughter will not be extradited to Belgium
The wife and daughter of Antonio Panzeri, the suspected linchpin in the European Parliament corruption scandal, will not be extradited from Belgium to Italy. Belgium is dropping the extradition request because Panzeri has committed to extensive cooperation with the authorities, the two women's lawyers told Italian media.
Former MEP Antonio Panzeri is considered the key figure in the scandal surrounding the alleged influence of Qatar and Morocco on European parliamentary decision-making. The Italian former MEP is alleged to have acted as a middleman in the case, which also saw the arrest of former European Parliament vice-president Eva Kaili.
Investigators suspect Panzeri's wife and daughter knew about his illegal affairs and supported his fraudulent activities. The two were arrested in December and placed under house arrest. An Italian judge agreed to their extradition, but the women appealed. Panzeri's tax adviser, who allegedly conspired with the former MEP's daughter to launder bribes, has also been arrested.
Pier Antonio Panzeri speaks during a plenary session in Strasbourg in 2019 © Marc Dossmann / EUROPEAN UNION / AFP