Former EU Health Boss Loses Appeal in Scandal

    Photo: janeb13 from Pixabay

    Former EU health commissioner John Dalli lost his final appeal before the bloc’s high court in a nearly decade-old bribery scandal, reports the Courthouse News Service.

    On Feb. 25, the European Court of Justice upheld a lower court ruling that dismissed the Maltese politician’s claim for €1 million ($1.2 million) in damages stemming from his resignation following accusations of fraud in 2012.

    In 2012, the EU anti-fraud office found that Silvio Zammit, an associate of Dalli, attempted to facilitate a €60 million bribe from a Swedish smokeless tobacco company in exchange for lifting an EU-wide ban on the product (the ban doesn’t apply in Sweden on cultural grounds). The snus company rejected the offer as improper and reported it to the European Commission.

    Denying knowledge of the bribe, Dalli claimed that he was illegally forced from his post. In 2015, a lower EU court found that Dalli resigned voluntarily, a decision that was upheld in a 2016 appeal. A second lawsuit, in which Dalli demanded financial compensation for what he alleged was his wrongful termination, was rebuffed by the lower court in 2017.

    The Court of Justice upheld that ruling Thursday.