Prosecutors send letter to President Iohannis requesting rejection of Felix Banila’s appointment as DIICOT head. Banila: Have confidence in President’s ability to make fully informed decision

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Prosecutors assembled in the General Assembly of the Directorate for Investigating Organized Crime and Terrorism (DIICOT) decided on Monday to send a letter to President Klaus Iohannis requesting the rejection of Felix Banila’s appointment as chief prosecutor of DIICOT, judicial sources told AGERPRES.

According to those sources, DIICOT prosecutors met on Monday in the General Assembly and decided, by 154 votes to 47, to demand that the head of state reject Felix Banila’s nomination, proposed by Justice Minister Tudorel Toader.

“DIICOT Prosecutors, constituted today, June 18, in the General Assembly, have adopted this document and request that you reject, in accordance with Article 54, paragraph 3 of Law 303/2004 on the statute of judges and prosecutors, the proposal made by the Minister of Justice for the position of chief prosecutor of the DIICOT, Mr. Felix Oliver Banila, and you will notice the serious inconsistency between the motivation of the CSM [the Supreme Council of Magistrates, ed.n.] decision no. 232 dated June 5, 2018 and Felix Banila’s live performance broadcast on CSM’s website, during the interview on June 5, 2018, which flaws the entire procedure, including the one carried out in the cabinet of the Minister of Justice on May 11, 2018, making it inherently affected by other reasons, unknown to us, than those which might have led to the fair assessment of the candidate. What else is this serious inconsistency but a flaw that affects the legality of the procedure?” reads the document sent to President Iohannis, according to the said sources.

DIICOT prosecutors say that the positive opinion given by the Prosecutor’s Section of the CSM, with a majority of 4 to 3, including the vote of Minister of Justice Tudorel Toader turned the “serious shortcomings” proven by Felix Banila in the interview in real “qualities”.

The sources also say that the document sent to the president also mentions that Felix Banila showed during the hearing at the CSM an “inexcusable and superficial knowledge” regarding the activity of DIICOT.

DIICOT prosecutors have also claimed that Felix Banila does not speak a foreign language, did not answer in the interview about the legal provisions regarding the quality of the police officers seconded at DIICOT, nor about the questions regarding the national strategy to fight organized crime and the national strategy on combating trafficking in human beings and migrants.

One of the conclusions of the DIICOT prosecutors was that Felix Banila’s “aspirations are far beyond his knowledge of DIICOT.”

On June 11, Justice Minister Tudorel Toader sent President Klaus Iohannis the proposal to appoint Felix Banila as Chief Prosecutor of DIICOT after receiving a favorable opinion from the Prosecutors’ Section of the CSM.

Two candidates registered for the leadership position of DIICOT- Daniel Horodniceanu, the current chief prosecutor of the institution, and Felix Banila, prosecutor at the Prosecutor’s Office attached to Bacau Court.

 

Banila, on his appointment as DIICOT head: Have confidence in President’s ability to make fully informed decision

 

Prosecutor Felix Banila says he has confidence in President Klaus Iohannis’ ability to make a decision in full knowledge of the facts with regard to his appointment as head of the Directorate for Investigating Organized Crime and Terrorism (DIICOT).

Felix Banila’s statement comes in response to the letter sent by representatives of DIICOT to President Klaus Iohannis, in which they request the latter to reject the former’s appointment as chief prosecutor of the Directorate.

“I cannot comment anything in relation to this demarche and I cannot speculate anything because (…) firstly, it is not ethical and secondly because of the procedure. I am waiting for Mr. President [Klaus Iohannis, ed.n.]’s decision and I have confidence in his capacity to discern and make a fully informed decision. You well Know – it is his constitutional right, he can either appoint me or not, and all this matter is up to him. The law clearly regulates the stages of this procedure, as well as the role and attributions of each of the actors involved in this procedure, namely the Justice Minister, the Supreme Council of Magistrates and Romania’s President,” Felix Banila told AGERPRES.