Bucharest, October 13, 2016/Independent Balkan News Agency
Chief prosecutor of the National Anti-Corruption Directorate (DNA) Laura Codruta Kovesi is asking the Chamber of Deputies to allow the prosecution of Elena Udrea for two counts of instigation to bribe taking related to the 2009 presidential election in Romania while she was holding the office of tourism minister.
“The DNA chief prosecutor has submitted to the attorney general with the Supreme Court a report on the case for the Chamber of Deputies to be asked to allow the commencement of a criminal investigation of Elena Gabriela Udrea, a member of the Romanian Parliament, for two counts of instigation to bribe taking related to the 2009 presidential election in Romania while she was holding the office of tourism minister. The case regards actions during the presidential election campaign related to the collection of proceeds of crime that were later used for the payment of services provided for the electoral campaign,” reads a press statement released by DNA.
DNA says that this September prosecutors ordered a criminal investigation of several people, including Gheorghe Nastasaia, secretary general of the Tourism Ministry at the date of the crime commission and Victor Tarhon, chairman of the Tulcea County Council at the date of the crime commission suspected of bribe taking, as well ad of Elena Udrea for five counts of money laundering.
In the meantime, new evidence is said to have been collected of Udrea’s commission of two counts of instigation to bribe taking that require the criminal investigation being widened.
The prosecutors also claim that Udrea was a coordinator of the people who acted as middlemen for the bank transfers so that the ill-gotten money may reach the companies providing services to the campaign.
Given that at the time covered in the investigation Udrea was the minister of tourism, the bribe-taking offences of which she is suspected were committed while in office, which requires the Chamber of Deputies’ approval for the continuation of the criminal probe.
Attached to the request of the DNA chief prosecutor were a report by the corruption prosecutors as well as 13 volumes comprising documents from the prosecution file.