The PACE Corruption Investigation Group found serious suspicions about Azerbaijan's lobbying activities in the assembly and published a list of deputies who violated the parliament's code of conduct, while former PACE head Pedro Agramunt is among the offenders.
The situation with corruption in the PACE arose for the first time in the history of the organization.
In the summer of 2016, the Italian Corriere della Sera wrote that the Milan prosecutor's office accused the famous Italian politician the former head of the European People's Party faction in PACE, Luca Volonte, of receiving major bribes from the representatives of Azerbaijan.
“In this context, the Investigation Body found that, in their activities concerning Azerbaijan, several members and former members of PACE had acted contrary to the PACE ethical standards,” the report reads.
The report includes parliamentarians who violated ethical norms, among them the former PACE head Pedro Agramunt, Samad Seyidov, Tadeusz Ivinski, Agustin Conde, Cezar Florin Preda, Stefan Schennach and others. Some of these people are still members of the assembly.
At the press conference on Sunday, PACE President Michele Nicoletti recalled the responsibility of parliamentarians and said that the report would be transmitted to the heads of delegations.
According to Corriere della Sera, the Italian prosecutor's office brought charges against Volonte over corruption and money laundering. Volonte is charged with receiving 2.39 million euros in the period from 2012 to 2014 from the accounts of the telecommunications company Baktelekom.
On 29 May 2017 the Bureau appointed the three members of the Investigation Body: Sir Nicolas Bratza (United Kingdom), former judge and former President of the European Court of Human Rights; Jean-Louis Bruguière (France), former judge in charge of investigations, in particular into cases related to terrorism and international expert on anti-terrorism issues; and Elisabet Fura (Sweden), former judge at the European Court of Human Rights and former chief parliamentary Ombudsman of Sweden.