Alleged corruption and insider trading in the cereals market led the European Commission - in close co-operation with the European Anti-fraud Office (OLAF), Brussels Prosecution Service and French and Dutch police - to arrest an official at the Commission's Directorate-General for Agriculture.
"The European Commission official involved is suspected of having supplied confidential information with major economic and strategic value for the cereals business", said the Commission in a recent statement.
The arrest came as a vast police operation on 15 October, involving more than a hundred police simultaneously in Belgium, France and the Netherlands, raided offices across these three countries.
Although few details were disclosed, the arrested agriculture official involved "is suspected of having supplied confidential information with major economic and strategic value for the cereals business", said a spokesman for OLAF.
According to the press release published by the Belgian judicial authorities, many witnesses were questioned and searches were conducted in, among other places, the premises of the Commission's agriculture body, and the Paris and Rotterdam headquarters of two French and Dutch cereals groups. A large volume of documents and computer files was seized by the Belgian judicial authorities.
A colleague of the arrested Commission official - also in the Commission's agriculture directorate - was also arrested during the raids and six others are being held for questioning in France.