Romanian Prime Minister will be tried for money laundering

Romanian Prime Minister will be tried for money laundering

Bucharest, September 17, 2015/ Independent Balkan News Agency

By Irina Stoica

Romanian Prime Minister, former prosecutor and lawyer Victor Ponta will be facing the court soon, from a totally different position that the one he’s used to from his years in the judiciary system. Prosecutors from the National Anti-corruption department (DNA) today decided he should be tried for several crimes, including complicity to tax-evasion and money laundering.

According to the indictment, Victor Ponta’s law firm obtained 40,000 euros for consultancy activities that were actually never offered. The “beneficiary” was the law-firm “Sova and Asociatii”, belonging to Ponta’s friend, Dan Sova, who later became a minister in his Government. Sova is currently a senator. Everything happened between October 2007 – December 2008, before Ponta became prime-minister.

The prosecutors decided the prime-minister would not be imprisoned during the trial.

Victor Ponta has always stated his innocence in this case and that he wished for a speedy conclusion of the file. He also said he wished to end his mandate as chief of Government, meaning that he intended to stay in power until the elections in 2016.

Following the news developments today, one might reevaluate a statement that the deputy Prime Minister Gabriel Oprea made yesterday in an interview for Antena 3 TV station in Bucharest.

Asked if he could become prime-minister by this fall, “as rumored”, Oprea first said that Victor Ponta was the country’s legitimate chief of Government, “a good prime-minister who can only become better”. He later conceded to the possibility that he could lead the Government. “I may be a solution for this job”, he said.