Prosecutor halts investigation into Babiš over alleged EU subsidy abuse

State prosecutor Jaroslav Šaroch has halted an investigation into Prime Minister Andrej Babiš and members of his family over the alleged abuse of European Union subsidies in connection with the Stork’s Nest hotel and conference centre near Prague, the newspaper Deník N reported on Monday, citing two people close to the case.

The daily said that Mr. Šaroch, who was due to conclude the matter by the end of August, had informed his superiors of the decision on Friday. It must still be approved by the leadership of the Prague municipal state attorney’s office.

Mr. Šaroch’s superiors must now go through the entire case file, which contains over 20,000 pages, Deník N said.

Mr. Babiš has been facing charges of abusing CZK 50 million in EU grants since October 2017 but has always denied any wrongdoing. His wife, daughter, brother-in-law and two other associates have also been under investigation.

The PM said on Sunday that he believed the investigation would be dropped. He said he would remain in government even if the prosecutor had acted on police advice and filed criminal charges against him.

Author: Ian Willoughby