Judge leading EU parliament corruption probe warns of the growing power of 'dirty money'

Europe — Interview

Belgian judge Michel Claise is leading the investigation into the snowballing corruption scandal rocking the European Parliament in Brussels, and which has already led to the downfall and imprisonment of a now former vice president of the chamber. In this interview with Mediapart, the veteran investigating magistrate, specialised in financial crime, details the extent to which corruption and organised crime are out of control in Europe, and slams the lack of resources to fight it. “When you touch on dirty money, and when that involves the political world, people become transformed into wild animals,” he says.

British conman wanted for injuring French police arrested in Belgium

International — Link

Robert Hendy-Freegard, 51, a convicted conman who is wanted in France on suspicion of 'attempted murder' after driving at and injuring two French police officers last week, has been arrested in Belgium.

Farmer modifies Belgium-France border for tractor path

France — Link

A farmer redrew the France-Belgium border by moving a century-old border stone to allow his tractor to pass.

Saturated French hospitals send Covid patients to Belgium

France — Link

Overwhelmed hospitals in north-east France have begun sending Covid-19 patients to hospitals in nearby Belgium to free up intensive care unit beds.

Belgian F-16 crashes in NW France, ejected pilot lands on power line

International — Link

A Belgian air force F-16 fighter jet crashed near Lorient in Brittany, north-west France, on Thursday, tearing the roof of a house and setting fire to a shed, while one of its ejected two-man crew became stuck for two hours when his parachute entangled a high-voltage electricity line.

Belgium hands France brother of suspected Paris attacks mastermind

International — Link

Yassine Atar, brother of Osama Atar who is suspected of having planned the November 13th 2015 Islamic State group attacks in Paris that left 130 people dead, has been extradited to France from Belgium where he was arrested in March 2016 in connection with the terrorist bomb attacks in Brussels that month which claimed 32 lives.

Phone tap reveals panic of Lafarge shareholders over Islamic State funding affair

France — Investigation

An intercepted telephone call involving the former boss of French cement firm Lafarge, which is accused of funding terrorist group Islamic State to keep its Syrian cement plant in production, shows the extend of the “worry” that has gripped the company, which has since become a Franco-Swiss multinational. Just how far – and to whom – will the current judicial investigation extend? Fabrice Arfi reports.

Belgium extradites key suspect in 2015 Paris terrorist attacks

International — Link

Mohamed Bakkali, 30, who is accused of knowingly offering his Brussels apartment to attackers who took part in the November 13th 2015 terrorist attacks in and around Paris which left 130 people dead, has been extradited to France, just as the Paris trial of Jawad Bendaoud, 31, continues into his alleged conspiracy with the Islamic State group cell which were housed in a property belonging to him in a suburb close to the French capital.

Belgium postpones trial of Paris attacks suspect to February

International — Link

Salah Abdeslam, detained in France for his suspected role in the November 13th 2015 Paris terrorist attacks which left 130 people dead and hundreds more wounded, was due to stand trial this week in Brussels in a separate case in whicjh he is charged with the attempted murder of Belgian police officers.

Belgium asks France to transfer Paris attacks suspect for trial

International — Link

Belgian prosecutors said Friday they have asked France to hand over Salah Abdeslam, a suspect in the November 2015 terrorist attacks in and around Paris, so that he can stand trial in Brussels in December over his alleged involvement in a March 2016 shooting attack on police in the Belgian capital. 

Anti-Semite French comic Dieudonné given jail sentence in Belgium

International — Link

Stand-up comic Dieudonné M’Bala M’Bala, who has been previously prosecuted in France for anti-Semitic speech during his shows, was handed a two-month jail sentence and a fine by a Belgian appeals court for anti-Semitic comments during a performance in the country.

Belgian police arrested in France with vanload of migrants

International — Link

The Belgian ambassador to France was on Thursday summoned to explain why the two arrested police officers had crossed the border with 13 migrants in their vehicle.

Belgium warns France of Islamic State gang en route for Europe

International — Link

Belgian police alerted French colleagues that Islamic State jihadists have left Syria with a set of targets to attack in Belgium and France.

Paris attacks suspect 'had German nuclear research centre files'

International — Link

Salah Abdeslam, arrested in Brussels and wanted by France for his role in November Paris terror attacks, held documents from centre near Belgium-Germany border.

Salah Abdeslam's extradition to France approved by Belgium

France — Link

Lawyer for suspect in Paris attacks, who was arrested in Brussels on March 18th, says he wants to be handed over to French authorities.