The EU Ombudsman opens an investigation against the EU Commission for alleged maladministration regarding the Striani Case (UEFA Financial Fair Play)

23 January 2015 - Following the rejection of his complaint by Joaquín Almunia during the very last days of his mandate as Competition Commissioner, Daniel Striani has lodged a complaint with the EU Ombudsman for "maladministration".

The Ombudsman has just announced her decision to investigate Mr. Almunia (and therefore the EU Commission) for "breach of impartiality, independence and objectivity". More details can be found at :

https://www.ombudsman.europa.eu/en/cases/caseopened.faces/en/58780/html.bookmark

In his complaint, Mr. Striani had brought to the attention of the Ombudsman the following double conflict of interests :

  • Because of his enthusiastic joint statement with Mr. Platini on FFP (https://ec.europa.eu/competition/sectors/sports/joint_statement_en.pdf), Mr. Almunia was not impartial anymore to judge Mr. Striani’s complaint.
  • Mr. Almunia is a well known and long-time associate of Athletic Bilbao, i.e. one of the parties to the anticompetitive agreement denounced by Mr. Striani (i.e. the UEFA FFP regulation).

At the end of his term as Commissioner, Mr. Almunia rejected Mr. Striani’s complaint but the EU Commissionhas notrejected the various similar complaints lodged by football fans associations.

The Brussels Court hearing in the FFP case will take place on 26 and 27 February 2015. The judgment is expected before the summer.

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