Cyprus Mail

Additional protection for whistleblowers on corruption

An article-by-article discussion was completed on Wednesday on the bill tabled by the finance ministry seeking to provide additional protection measures for those who report cases of corruption in both the public and private sector.

The bill also provides for greater leniency for those who report cases in which they are involved, given that they cooperate fully with authorities for the complete disclosure of all perpetrators of acts of corruption.

Before the bill is placed before the plenum in 15 days, president of the House legal committee Georgios Georgiou said that it will be further discussed next Wednesday in view of certain amendment proposals which are also supported by the justice ministry and legal service.

Speaking after the meeting, Georgiou said the protection of whistleblowers is crucial for the detection, effective investigation and prosecution of criminal activity of this kind, for which there is a particular difficulty in identifying perpetrators.

The bill particularly seeks to target corruption cases relating to the bribery of state officials, Georgiou said.

Regarding the proposed leniency measures for those who cooperate with the authorities, Georgiou said that in cases where a whistleblower reports an individual for participating in the bribing of a state official, no more than half of the maximum sentence can be imposed upon them, given that they admit to the act and that following their cooperation with authorities a criminal prosecution of the state official is launched.

Georgiou added that the bill provides that in cases where a state official is convicted following their own concession, no more than half of the maximum sentence can be imposed, given that they transfer any wealth gained from the corruption case to the state, among other preconditions.

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