Stefan Nicolae, CEO of Agrostar Union Federation also investigated.
Vincentiu Relu Lucian Cuc, Head of the Strategy, Data and Activity Management Division within ADS (the State Domains Agency), Stefan Nicolae, CEO of Agrostar, and six other persons including a high-ranking employee of ADS, are being criminally investigated for corruption charges, DNA (the National Anticorruption Directorate) informs, as cited by Agerpres.
According to DNA, manager Cuc is under criminal investigation for incitement to abuse of office in continued form, according to allegations that the public employee gained patrimonial or non-patrimonial advantages benefiting him or another, and Stefan Nicolae is being prosecuted for conspiracy to commit blackmail. Ilie Cristian Sandu, Stefanita Dragos Gheorghiu, Ioan Florin Todea, Alexandru Bolla, and Bogdan Radulescu are also being investigated for conspiracy to commit blackmail and complicity to blackmail. DNA has also made public that criminal proceedings were initiated on another high-ranking employee of ADS whose name was not disclosed. The seven defendants have been notified of the charges brought against them, the Directorate stated. Searches were conducted by DNA prosecutors Friday at the Ministry of Agriculture, the State Domains Agency, and Agrostar Union Federation, which resulted in multiple documents being seized as part of an investigation on corruption crimes, according to legal sources. The sources said Anticorruption prosecutors collected multiple documents from the Ministry of Agriculture, ADS and Agrostar Union Federation headquarters and these will be analyzed as part of a recently opened criminal case. No preemptive measures were taken on persons of interest in this case following the searches, the cited sources added.
After the searches on Friday, Daniel Constantin, Minister of Agriculture, stated an ADS employee claimed irregularities in the procurement of maintenance services for Xerox machines, security services, and telephone services. He continued by saying the Ministry of Agriculture’s activity was not disrupted during searches conducted Friday. The Minister of Agriculture emphasized that none of the employees of the institution under his command are persons of interest, nor have they been subpoenaed to give statements for DNA. The persons of interest are ADS employees, he clarified. “Up to now, none of the employees working for the Ministry of Agriculture have been charged or called as a witness. Some persons could be asked to make a statement in the future, but not at this time,” he said.
When asked what conclusion the Inspection Unit reached after searches at ADS, the Minister of Agriculture responded he could not reveal that information because the “transcripts” are no longer in the institution. The searches conducted Friday also involved the office of the Head of the Inspection Unit, where two “inspection transcripts” were collected from. As to the searches, the Minister of Agriculture said the office of the ADS CEO and the office of another manager of the same institution were sealed and public procurement documents were collected.
On the other hand, Constantin also said management problems were identified upon ADS searches by the Ministry of Agriculture’s Inspection Unit and for this reason it was decided to relieve Dan Lucian Stefan Mogos, the Agency’s CEO, of his duties. The decision to let the Head of ADS go could not be set in motion sooner because the latter had been on medical leave until Friday, Nita added.