Qatargate, Panzeri family accountant also arrested

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Even the accountant of the Panzeri family, Monica Rossana Bellini, was arrested yesterday – 17 January – in the context of the Qatargate. Upon execution of a European arrest warrant, on behalf of the Belgian judiciary, the Italian authorities proceeded to arrest Bellini: the charges are of criminal association, corruption and money laundering. It turns out that, to verify her involvement in the alleged great scheme of bribes between Qatar and the EU, which is being examined by the judges in Brussels, the woman had already been searched in recent weeks by the Guardia di Finanza. The judge then validated the arrest and ordered house arrest as a precautionary measure. Bellini is 55 years old and has a studio in the municipality of Opera. Among her positions there is also the participation in the boards of auditors of some municipal companies in Milan, such as Milanosport for example.

Bellini-affiliated companies and money-laundering suspects

The disputes against Bellini, according to what has been learned, concern in particular financial movements – which are suspected to be acts of money laundering – registered through the corporate structures attributable to her. At the center of the investigation is above all Equality Consultancy srl, founded in December 2018: as majority shareholders it had the father and brother of Francesco Giorgi, a former collaborator of the former MEP Antonio Panzeri and companion of Eva Kaili, who was also arrested under Qatargate. Bellini held a minority stake. The company was formally created to “develop” relationships between NGOs, companies and “counterparts in third countries”.

The latest developments on the Panzeri family

Now it is up to the Court of Appeal of the Lombard capital to decide whether to hand over Bellini to the Belgian authorities, as happened, for example, with Silvia Panzeri, the daughter of the former MEP who – detained since last December 9 – has now decided to collaborate with the justice of Brussels. Panzeri signed an agreement with the Belgian federal prosecutor’s office which provides for “imprisonment, a fine and the confiscation of all assets acquired so far, currently estimated at one million euros” and “a five-year sentence, but with suspended sentence for the part exceeding one year”, as explained by afp Panzeri’s lawyer, Laurent Kennes. Eva Kaili, former vice president of the EU Parliament, and her partner Francesco Giorgi also remain in prison for the moment.

Socialist Angel elected new vice-president Pe

Meanwhile in Brussels the Luxembourg socialist and MEP Marc Angel was elected to the second call as vice president of the Eurochamber in place of Eva Kaili, who was under arrest for Qatargate. The absolute majority required, in the second round, was 296. Angel took 307 votes, followed by Northern League Annalisa Tardino (185 votes) and Green Gwendoline Delbos-Corfield, who obtained 98 votes. In the first round Angel had not reached the quorum.

Cozzolino suspends himself from the Socialist group

“This morning Andrea Cozzolino adhered to the invitation to be heard addressed to him by the Jurisdictional Commission of the European Parliament, to reiterate his total extraneousness to the facts of the investigation called Qatargate. In view of his hearing, Cozzolino decided to suspend himself from the S&d group, in order allow the Juri’s work to take place in the best conditions of autonomy and impartiality”: the lawyers Federico Conte, Dezio Ferraro and Dimitri De Becó communicated this in a note on behalf of the MEP Andrea Cozzolino.