Belgian authorities investigate EU price-fixing scam in agricultural sector

Investigators raided offices in Belgium, the Netherlands and France and several people were detained on 15 October in a multinational probe into suspected insider dealing scam in the European grain trade.

Background

A spokesman for the Belgian prosecutor's office said there is an "an investigation into prior knowledge of the pricing of grain," following inquiries by the EU's antifraud unit, OLAF. He cited allegations that certain cereals firms were tipped off on grain prices two hours before they were officially available. A small number of people inside the Commission have been under suspicion of giving advance warning of internal decisions to a network of outside interests. The identity or seniority of the EU officials involved remain unclear. The grain probe comes at a sensitive time for the Commission, which is under political pressure over a scandal involving financial irregularities at its Eurostat statistics agency.

 

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