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To whom it may concern,

Under the right of access to documents in the EU treaties, as developed in Regulation 1049/2001, I am requesting documents which contain the following information:

I am requesting all documents relating to CAP funding to North Lodge Farm, Durham, DH1 3SU, United Kingdom.

I wish for all documents submitted between 2006 and 2015.

I am requesting this as the farm in question, may have fraudulently claimed CAP subsidies. A recent investigation revealed that this farm was not a single property, but is in-fact 3. I need the documents to ascertain if they overstated their arable acreage to you. They have more buildings on the land than submitted which would affect their calculation as less farmland is available. Also, it appears from the limited available public records, two individuals were claiming for the farm at the same time between 2006 and 2009.

This is a public interest case as the farm owner is Prime Minister Boris Johnson's political advisor Dominic Cummings.

Yours faithfully,

Alexander Tiffin

ECA-INFO, Cour des comptes européenne

Dear Mr Tiffin,

 

Thank you for contacting the European Court of Auditors (ECA).

 

As a foreword, please note that Regulation 1049/2001 regarding public
access to European Parliament, Council and Commission documents is not
applicable to our institution. Instead, the rules on public access to ECA
documents are set out in [1]ECA’s Decision 12/2005, as amended by Decision
14/2009 (consolidated version published in OJ C 67/1 of 20.03.2009), hence
your request has been processed in accordance therewith. 

 

By e-mail of 16 October 2020, you asked us to provide you “all documents
relating to CAP funding to North Lodge Farm, Durham, DH1 3SU, United
Kingdom”.

To the best of our knowledge, we have not identified any document in
possession of the ECA concerning the above‑mentioned farm.

 

Moreover, even in the event that our institution detained those documents,
in accordance with Article 4.5 of the ECA’s decision, the ECA would not be
allowed to disclose them to third parties, as the ECA is not the author of
the documents you requested. When the ECA is requested access to a
document of which it is not the author, we “shall confirm receipt of the
application and supply the name of the person, institution or body to whom
the application must be addressed”.

 

As a result, we regret to inform you that, we cannot grant you access to
the requested documents. However, we would like to stress out that under
the basic rules for the [2]financial management of the CAP, the European
Commission (EC) is responsible for the management of the European
agricultural guarantee fund (EAGF) and the European agricultural fund
rural for development (EAFRD). Please note though that the Commission
normally does not make payments to beneficiaries. According to the
principle of shared management, EU countries execute payments to farmers
through national or regional paying agencies. Therefore, if the documents
you are looking for are not available on the [3]EC Beneficiaries of CAP
funds webpage, you may consider addressing your request to the European
Commission though its [4]Access to documents webpage or to the relevant UK
paying agency.

 

Kind regards,

ECA-Info

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