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European corruption scandal: Kaili to remain in pre-trial detention

Published January 19,2023

Former European Parliament vice-president Eva Kaili, accused of corruption, is to remain in pre-trial detention, a court decided on Thursday, according to the public prosecutor's office.

Kaili now has 24 hours to appeal the decision, the court said. Her lawyer has previously affirmed that his client was innocent.

The case involves alleged influence on political decisions of the EU Parliament by Qatar and Morocco.

The judiciary charges Kaili and other suspects with participation in a criminal organization, money laundering and corruption.

Kaili and two others are accused of having influenced decisions in the European Parliament in favour of football World Cup host Qatar in return for money and gifts, according to the prosecutor's office.

Meanwhile Kaili's lawyer slammed the Belgian authorities for the conditions under which she is being detained. "The conditions in the Brussels police cell are reminiscent of the Middle Ages," Michalis Dimitrakopoulos told international media on Thursday afternoon. "All of this is torture."

He claimed Kaili had been held in solitary confinement and prevented from sleeping.

She was held at the police station from January 11 to 12 and is now being held at the prison in Haren, Dimitrakopoulos told dpa. A Justice Ministry spokesperson said detainees in the recently opened prison are housed in their own cells that have showers.