The European Council has agreed to the appointment of prominent Romanian prosecutor Laura Codruta Kovesi as the first European chief prosecutor. The appointment now awaits the confirmation of the European Parliament.
According to the European Council, “Ms. Kovesi, a Romanian national, is currently prosecutor within the Prosecutor’s Office attached to the High Court of Cassation and Justice of Romania. She held various positions as a prosecutor during her career in Romania.”
The European chief prosecutor will organize the work of the EPPO and represent the office in contacts with EU institutions, member states, and third countries. She will be assisted by two deputies and will chair the college of prosecutors, which will be in charge of defining the strategy and internal rules and ensuring coherence across and within cases.
“The priority of the Council is that the EPPO is up and running by November 2020,” states Anna-Maja Henriksson, Minister of Justice from the Finnish presidency of the Council. “Ms. Kovesi, as the first-ever incumbent of this post, will have the task of setting up the EPPO from scratch. Her job over the seven years of her mandate will in particular consist in building the administrative and operational structure of the office and establishing good working relations with national judiciary authorities.”
Kovesi was selected from a shortlist of three candidates proposed by an independent selection panel and following an open call for applications.
The European Public Prosecutor’s Office will be an independent body of the European Union responsible for investigating, prosecuting, and bringing to judgment crimes against the financial interests of the EU, such as fraud, corruption, and cross-border VAT fraud over EUR ten million. It will, to achieve that goal, undertake investigations, and carry out acts of prosecution and exercise the functions of the prosecutor in the competent courts of the Member States.
The EPPO will be based in Luxembourg.