Radu Nemes, extradited from the US


He and his wife Dana Nemes, who was brought to Romania last week, are charged with tax evasion of over EUR 15 M in a case in which Codrut Marta, Sorin Blejnar’s former chief of cabinet, is also investigated.

Radu Nemes has been extradited from America after he decided to drop his appeal against the measure, an appeal he had filed before a federal judge. He will be taken to the Bucharest Court of Appeals in order to have the preventive arrest warrant issued on his name in 2012 reconfirmed. Judicial sources quoted by Mediafax stated that Radu Nemes will allegedly be heard by DNA prosecutors on Friday. His wife Diana was brought to Romania last week and is in prison.
The two had been placed on an international watch list since 2012 and were caught by the FBI on US territory on March 18 this year. They are charged with tax evasion of over EUR 15 M in a case in which former National Fiscal Authority Agency (ANAF) chief Sorin Blejnar, his chief of cabinet Codrut Marta, the former head of the National Customs Authority Viorel Comanita, the former head of the Constanta County’s Intelligence and Interior Protection Service Dan Secareanu and several company administrators are also investigated. Radu Nemes, considered by prosecutors the coordinator of the organized crime group, and Diana Nemes, the administrator of SC Excella Real Grup SRL, are accused of being accessories to tax evasion.
A preventive arrest warrant in absentia was issued on their names on July 11, 2012. A preventive arrest warrant in absentia was issued for Codrut Marta on the same date, who was accused of being an accessory to tax evasion and setting up an organized crime group. Marta disappeared on May 25, 2012, and was placed on an international watch list on May 30. The National Anticorruption Directorate (DNA) pointed out in the referral through which it asked for the arrest of several persons in this case, that Marta left the country in May 2011, but that he kept constantly in touch with businessman Radu Nemes, Sorin Blejnar and ANAF, until April 2012.
Radu and Diana Nemes were detained by the FBI in the state of Washington, on the basis of an international warrant issued by the Romanian authorities. Diana Nemes was extradited from the US on May 7, the Bucharest Court of Appeals confirming, on the same day, the preventive arrest warrant issued on her name in July 2012. On May 9 she appealed against the decision and asked the Supreme Court to be released, arguing that she is eight-months pregnant and she did not evade prosecution, however her appeal was rejected. Moreover, prosecutors have changed the legal classification of the offence. More precisely, they will no longer investigate her for joining an organized crime group as stipulated in law 39/2003 on preventing and combating organized crime, but for the same offence as stipulated in the new Penal Code. Diana Nemes is also investigated for being an accessory to tax evasion.
Diana Nemes (38), now expecting her third child, and her husband own property in Yelm. Federal investigators believe that the two used USD 3 M obtained from money laundering operations in order to buy a home and that they own several companies in Washington, according to seattleepi.com. An investigation led by the FBI is ongoing, focusing on alleged money laundering operations conducted by the Nemes family and other persons in Washington, but for the time being they have not been charged with any crime in the United States, the aforementioned source pointed out. According to the aforementioned website, the FBI’s Seattle Division had started to investigate the Nemes family, jointly with Romanian authorities, ever since 2012, after it was discovered that they were living in Yelm. According to judicial documents, a bunker was discovered during searches conducted on their 21-hectare property in Yelm. Investigators had brought a ground radar in order to look for gold caches thought to be buried on the property. The FBI agents that conducted searches in the house found four handguns and two rifles, including an AR-15 assault rifle, according to the prosecutors’ statements. None of the two suspects had gun permits. Investigators claim that the two laundered money through banks in Dubai and the United States, before fleeing from Romania. Prior to that, they had set up a series of companies in Washington, apparently in order to use them for money laundering.

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