Monday, November 10, 2008

UK Taxpayers Money Used for Showgirls


Taypayers' money spent on showgirls, campaign group claims

British taxpayers' money is being wasted by the European Union on a myriad of "bizarre" schemes, a campaign group has claimed.

Grants include £850,000 for Intertango, a Finnish dance project to further "the internationalisation of Finnish tango" and £1 million to help young Italian women learn a trade as television showgirls in Naples.

A think-tank called Open Europe, which campaigns for more transparency within the EU, included these examples in a list it compiled of the 'Top 100' examples of waste and fraud.

In one case £10 million (12 million Euros) was siphoned away into a secret bank account by authorities in the Belgian city of Charleroi, which spent it on a series of parties and outings including a hunting trip to Belarus.

In another Italian dentist Giovanni Lupo invented a solar panel business to acquire cash from the EU, which he spent on 55 luxury cars include a yellow Ferrari Testarossa. The dentist was part of a larger fraud scheme that drained the EU of more than £60 million (80 million Euros).

British taxpayers contribute almost 10 per cent of the EU's estimated £123 billion budget.

The European Court of Auditors has refused to sign off the EU's books for the last 13 years because of suspected fraud and financial irregularities.

Read more here.

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