Searches at Radio Romania: Board members probed for illegal procurement of tourism services

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Bucharest District 1 Court prosecutors searched Radio Romania’s offices on Thursday. Members of the public radio broadcaster’s board are being probed for malfeasance in office and conflict of interests, being accused of allegedly taking part in the adoption of decisions to illegally award several contracts concerning the procurement of tourism services.

According to the Prosecutor’s Office, prosecutors ordered a probe against Andras Istvan Demeter and Mirela-Ioana Fugaru (current members of the public radio broadcaster’s board), Mihai Voicu, Stejarel Olaru and Doina Mosneag (former board members), as well as against six other persons holding leadership positions within the public radio broadcaster, namely members of the board.

“The evidence collected so far as part of the criminal prosecution shows that from July 2011 to January 2014 the aforementioned persons were involved in the public radio broadcaster’s board adopting decisions that saw the awarding of several contracts for services rendered, on whose basis they illegally obtained benefits amounting to around 400,000 lei,” state the prosecutors.

Eleven witness summons were enforced following the searches conducted at the public radio broadcaster’s offices and at the offices of a commercial company with which the public broadcaster carried out contracts, according to a communique issued by the Bucharest District 1 Court’s Prosecutor’s Office.

Judicial police officers from the Romanian Police Inspectorate’s (IGPR) Directorate for the Investigation of Economic Crimes enforced, under the supervision of the prosecutor handling the case, three search warrants targeting the offices of the public radio broadcaster and the offices of a company with which the institution carried out contracts. The searches sought to seize documents and other evidence needed to solve the criminal case.

“Several persons who hold leadership positions within the public radio broadcaster, namely members of its board, are being probed in this case, being suspected of malfeasance in office and conflict of interests. They allegedly took part in the adoption of decisions that saw the awarding of several contracts for services rendered and obtained illegal benefits as a result. The value of the damage caused to the public radio broadcaster totals approximately 400,000 lei,” the communique informs.

According to the communique, 11 witness summons were enforced against the persons concerned. They will be heard at the headquarters of IGPR’s Directorate for the Investigation of Economic Crimes.

Referring to the searches that took place at its offices on Thursday, Radio Romania stated on Thursday that it placed at the prosecutors’ disposal all the documents they requested in the case concerning the awarding of contracts, a case in which members of its board are being probed.

“Representatives of the Bucharest District 1 Court’s Prosecutor’s Office showed up at the headquarters of the public radio broadcaster on November 17, to seize some documents. Radio Romania has put at their disposal all of the documents requested,” Radio Romania representatives pointed out.

“At this moment we are not able to offer more details, but we assure you that the public radio broadcaster will continue to honestly keep its listeners abreast of any new elements in the case in which these investigations are being carried out, to the extent that these elements are of relevance,” the public radio broadcaster’s representatives added.