Threatening to smash EU – after misspending its money

Marine Le Pen claims she will smash the EU. She is under investigation. The EU Parliament wants misspent money back. So smashing the EU – provided she is elected French President with or without Russian hackers’ help – may be one of her few good ideas.

The EU Parliament gave Ms Le Pen till midnight January 31st to start paying back money. Marine Le Pen’s quarrel with the EU Parliament is about roughly 300,000 Euro. She spent it paying two assistants – and possibly a phantom one.

When asked, Ms Le Pen told media she would not pay a Euro back. So from this month on, her monthly EU parliamentary salary will be cut in half leaving her about 3,000 Euro per month. She will also lose allowances. EU officials calculated “around 7,000 Euro will be taken from her EU payment slip every month“.

Meanwhile, Marine Le Pen is stating in exclusive interviews, she will smash the EU.

The whole quarrel started, when the EU agency investigating fraud – OLAF – discovered how two of Ms Le Pen’s assistants were funded. While the EU Parliament is docking her, OLAF has brought a case against her which is currently traipsing through French courts.

It is not just the EU Parliament and OLAF, Ms Le Pen is facing. According to the French paper Le Monde, Ms Le Pen faces not just the EU Parliament and its OLAF. She is actually being investigated for three different cases – and the other two are not as “small” as the EU Parliament’s money: “affaires politico-financières distinctes: les assistants européens, le financement des campagnes et la sous-évaluation de son patrimoine.

In plain English: there is this EU case. Secondly: she and her political party Front National, are also accused of fraudulently financing election campaigns. Thirdly: Marine le Pen and her father are suspected of reducing the actual value or not completely revealing all property they own and: “ … Cela représenterait plus de un million d’euros pour Jean-Marie Le Pen et plusieurs centaines de milliers d’euros pour sa fille.” So the third case is about millions of Euros and involves father and daughter. Marine le Pen’s father has been involved in other scandals and is currently being investigated as well.

Undoubtedly, Ms Le Pen – a fan of both Vladimir Putin and Donald Trump – will ensure investigations will lead to nothing, provided she is elected. Like other leaders, she may not stop at getting France out of the EU, but perhaps dabble a bit with France’s anti-corruption laws and its legislative or judicial system.

It seems her “I’m going to smash the EU”is not just about winning votes and getting elected; but possibly about revenge for being docked and found out, as well as perhaps about stopping fraud and corruption investigations.

Guardian: Marine le Pen refuses
Reuter: Le Pen defiant
Le Monde: les trois affaires qui menacent


About Kate

Multilingual arts & culture journalist, blogger, columnist, writer and translator. Contributor to international (news) media. 2014 winning columnist Gentse Schrijversdagen, Gand, Belgium.
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