Ex-President Traian Basescu prosecuted for money laundering

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The General Prosecutor’s Office (PG) has decided to prosecute former president Traian Basescu for money laundering in a criminal case concerning the sale of land in Bucharest’s northern neighbourhood of Baneasa to businessman Costel Casuneanu.

Likewise, Traian Basescu is accused of money laundering in what concerns the purchase of a Mercedes 500 car. According to the sources mentioned, Basescu allegedly bought the luxury car at a very low price and immediately sold it at a very high price.

Judicial sources say that Traian Basescu is to be summoned to the PG to be officially informed that he is prosecuted.

The case was opened following a notification filed in 2014 by the Group for Political Investigations (GIP) and is based on the statements of some witnesses, bank documents and reports authored by the office for combating money laundering.

The former president confirmed on Wednesday that he was informed by the PG that he is suspected of money laundering. He asserted that the PG had closed the same case in June 2012.

“The High Court has informed me that I am suspected of money laundering, continuous offence, concerning the purchase of a plot of land and of a house in 2000 and 2002 respectively, following a complaint filed by Mr. Ciuvica,” Traian Basescu wrote on Facebook.

The former president pointed out that the High Court’s Prosecutor’s Office has not subpoenaed him yet. “I hereby inform you that in the same case the High Court Prosecutor’s Office’s decided, through a RESOLUTION dated 25 June 2012, not to commence the prosecution. This case was reopened in 2015, at the High Court’s Prosecutor’s Office. Once I’m subpoenaed I will certainly show up before the prosecutor,” Traian Basescu underscored.

On 9 August 2000, when he was mayor of Bucharest, Basescu bought 3,700 square metres of land in Aleea Privighetorilor 86 for 1.4 billion old Lei (then equivalent of approximately 70,000 Dollars). On the same day, Casuneanu bought a nearbly plot of similar size for a threefold sum.

Basescu eventually sold his property in October 2002, to Casuneanu’s sister-in-law Gabriela Blaj, for 12 billion old Lei (300,000 Dollars), and subsequently paid 280,000 Dollars for a villa he later donated to his daughter, Ioana Basescu.

In April 2013, businessman Costel Casuneanu was sentenced to four years in jail, suspended sentence, in the corruption case in which former PSD Senator Catalin Voicu was involved.

Casuneanu is also on trial for active bribery in the case involving Bacau’s suspended mayor, Romeo Stavarache.

 

Elena Udrea comes to his defence: “Once there was talk that he might run for Bucharest Mayor a criminal file popped up”

 

MP Elena Udrea believes that ex-president Traian Basescu is targeted by a criminal probe because he plans to run for Bucharest Mayor.

“Once there was talk that Traian Basescu might enter the race for the Bucharest City Hall, in a more direct or more veiled manner, signals keep coming that he should mind his business, tending to his grandkids or playing chess with pensioners in the park. He couldn’t intend to ruin the plans of those who are handling “the reformation of the political class” by replacing strong leaders with all kinds of incompetent ‘technocratic’ puppets or ‘new people’ formed at the National Security Academy. And since there are just a few days in which City Hall candidacies can be filed, a criminal file on Traian Basescu’s name pops up! So, Mr. President, mind you don’t think about running for Bucharest,” Elena Udrea wrote on Facebook.