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Kevin Ellul Bonici sacked from EP group

Kevin Ellul Bonici sacked for distributing Red Dalia books about Lithuanian president

Staff Reporter
3 February 2015, 6:30pm
Red Dalia in blue: Grybauskaite’s alleged past as a KGB collaborator featured in an unauthorised English translation of a book that Ellul Bonici is accused of distributing in MEPs’ pigeonholes without permission
Red Dalia in blue: Grybauskaite’s alleged past as a KGB collaborator featured in an unauthorised English translation of a book that Ellul Bonici is accused of distributing in MEPs’ pigeonholes without permission
Kevin Ellul Bonici has been sacked by his EP group for distributing controversial books about Lithuanian President Dalia Grybauskaité to post boxes of EP members.

Ellul Bonici, husband of former Labour candidate Sharon Ellul Bonici, has been implicated in the unauthorised distribution of the highly critical biography that was placed in the pigeonholes of all 751 MEPs back in December, 2014.

Bonici is a member of staff in the secretariat of the eurosceptic Europe of Freedom and Direct Democracy, led by UKIP leader Nigel Farage.

According to delfi.lt, Ellul Bonici returned from sick leave on Monday morning and disciplinary action was taken.

"This morning the person returned from sick leave. Disciplinary action has now been taken and the person has been notified of his dismissal," Kelly Herman of the Europe of Freedom and Direct Democracy group told the Lithuanian media.

The security probe was ordered by the European Parliament’s College of Quaestors after a complaint by Lithuanian MEP Antanas Guoga.

The book is an unflattering biography of the former European Commissioner, containing allegations of Soviet and KGB collaboration, and which was translated into English and reprinted without the authorisation of its author, journalist Ruta Yanutene.

Supporters of Grybauskaite say the smear campaign was orchestrated by the Kremlin in response to the Lithuanian President’s outspoken views of Vladimir Putin’s Russia, which she accused of acting as a “terrorist state” during the Ukrainian crisis.

In a confidential letter to European Parliament president Martin Schulz, director-general for security and safety Francesca Ratti said that Ellul Bonici invited a Russian citizen and a Polish citizen born in Moscow, as well as another unidentified fourth person, into the EP, to distribute the books.

The EFDD has denied that it was behind the book hand-out after Ellul Bonici was caught distributing the book on surveillance cameras.
Ratti said that following verification, it transpired that on 10 December, 2014, at around 1:30pm, Ellul Bonici and three other men placed the ‘Red Dalia’ books in the MEPs’ pigeonholes on the third floor of the Altiero Spinelli building “without previous consent or authorisation from the competent service”.

Ratti said that it was Ellul Bonici who brought the books into the parliament and distributed them, together with the three other men. “My services have not confronted the identified individuals. However, we remain available for any additional steps you deem necessary,” Ratti told Schulz.

Sharon Ellul Bonici, who spoke for husband Kevin, had denied with MaltaToday that he was behind the book’s distribution: “I hope the EP investigates the matter thoroughly. This is news to him and he said he wants his name cleared.”