At the end of last year, the SKWAWKBOX revealed that UKIP MEPs were under investigation by the EU’s OLAF anti-fraud unit for allegedly fraudulent expense claims.
The article was originally dismissed as ‘fake news’ by many in the mainstream – until suddenly the UK and even international press ‘broke’ the same news more than a month later. A not uncommon pattern.
In July, UKIP MEP Nigel Farage devoted a portion of his show to complaining about £80,000 the EU had, ‘like people back in Stalin’s day‘, demanded he repay in expenses:
Mr Farage said that the EU had not bothered to contact him about this. However, in February 2017 he waved a note from the EU’s accounting department and claimed that it showed that the European Parliament agreed that his employment of assistants was ‘fair and reasonable’ – a claim on which the UKIP-supporting Daily Express immediately cast doubt:
The investigation into the original allegations is, as far as can be ascertained from the OLAF office responsible, still ongoing – in which case, the £80,000 may not be the last repayment demanded by ‘Stalin’s’ EU.
So much for the story so far. Now the SKWAWKBOX can reveal that new allegations have been made to OLAF concerning more recent expenses allegedly claimed by Mr Farage – relating to his recent visit to Germany to address the far-right party Alternative für Deutschland (AfD).
An email has been sent to Dora Fober, the same OLAF investigator handling the late 2016 allegations, by a UKIP whistleblower. It alleges – and these are, of course, purely allegations until and unless proven otherwise – that Mr Farage made an illegitimate claim for expenses for himself and an assistant for the trip to speak to AfD. But the email also makes a more dramatic claim:
The letter alleges – again, at this stage only an allegation – that Nigel Farage was paid to speak to AfD and has already been indicted in the US under ‘sealed indictments’ concerning similar payments relating to the US. Speaking to the SKWAWKBOX, the whistleblower claimed that the alleged indictments relate, among other events, to a visit by Mr Farage to Wikileaks‘ Julian Assange during the US election campaign – a visit that is a matter of public record:
Mr Farage was invited by the SKWAWKBOX to comment and to confirm or deny the existence of the indictment, as well as whether he claimed expenses for the AfD trip, but has not so far responded.
A ‘sealed indictment’ is also known as a ‘secret indictment’:
According to a US legal website, it is not uncommon for an indicted person not to know about the indictment before the point of arrest. The FBI will not, of course, officially confirm or deny the existence of a secret indictment, but the UKIP whistleblower claims to have inside knowledge of the proceedings.
Similar – and hotly disputed – allegations relating to sealed indictments have been made against US President Donald Trump, also in relation to alleged activities on behalf of Russia, by former Tory MP Louise Mensch and former White House staffer Claude Taylor:
The ‘others’ of ‘among others’ have not been specified, if indeed the claims of indictments against Trump are accurate.
The allegations cannot, in the current circumstances, be substantiated. But the allegation, to an official EU investigative body, of such indictments is of clear public interest in light of Mr Farage’s influence over the UK’s decision on the EU referendum.
Given US procedures surrounding sealed indictments, the public may only know the truth of the matter if the whistleblower is correct that ‘[a]rrests will follow’. The allegations regarding expense claims for the AfD trip will presumably be investigated by OLAF, who do not comment on live investigations.
The SKWAWKBOX needs your support. This blog is provided free of charge but depends on the generosity of its readers to be viable. If you can afford to, please click here to arrange a one-off or modest monthly donation via PayPal. Thanks for your solidarity so this blog can keep bringing you information the Establishment would prefer you not to know about.