Underground boss Bercea Mondial arrested for 29 days

He is under investigation for attempted murder, assault and disturbance of public order

Olt County underworld has been badly shaken by one of its bosses being remanded in custody for 29 days pending investigations. The person is businessman Sandu Anghel, alias Bercea Mondial, who had been the subject of an all-point bulletin issued at the week-end, after allegedly stabbing one of his nephews (Ionut Anghel, alias Mercedes – our note). After 48 hours of continuous searches, Bercea Mondial was apprehended in Bucharest, Saturday night, in an operation organised by the criminal investigative police department, overseen by High Court prosecutors and assisted by the Romanian Intelligence Service (SRI), Mediafax reports. The suspect was rushed to the Olt Tribunal Prosecutor’s Office for questioning. Sided by officers wearing face masks, before being taken inside the Prosecutor’s Office building, Bercea Mondial told the press he was innocent: ‘An entire country could not have me arrested, but my own brother did! Stupid people! My brothers and my mother!’


One of Bercea’s sons aged 14 claims he stabbed his cousin Mercedes in self defence. ‘We met at Draganesti, at my father’s bar. He was looking for my brother Laurentiu, but he spotted me and he started chasing me around the bar. He caught me and grabbed me by the neck. At that point, a knife dropped off his pocket. I took it and I wanted to defend myself, to scare him away; I only meant to scratch him, not to cut him. I am guilty. My father was not here, he was away to see a sick member of the family’, the boy said, quoted by Realitatea TV.


Olt prosecutor Eugen Iaco­bescu stated after the questioning that he has ‘overwhelming’ evidence on file, as well as eye-witness testimonies and telephone recordings and that the version that the suspect’s son was the actual perpetrator was not being considered seriously. ‘(…) The story line is the clash of the clans, his fighting with his brothers. He (Bercea Mondial – our note) says he was not at the bar. He has had his son take the crime upon himself because he is a juvenile and not criminally liable’, said prosecutor Iacobescu, according to Jurnalul.ro. Prosecutor Iacobescu also said yesterday that Bercea is the wealthiest man in the county and he was trying to bribe him by interposed people. “The Prosecutor Office did not wait for Bercea to try to commit murder. We have many files, he has to answer a lot of questions. For instance, how he built a financial and real estate empire(…) We can talk about a real Bercea octopus”, said Iacobescu.


FAMILY CONFLICT


On Thursday night, Olt Police were called to intervene at a bar in the town of Draganesti (Olt), where a fight had been reported among several members of the family of Bercea Mondial, resulting in the stabbing of 13-year old Ionut Anghel. The victim claims he was playing billiards with two other people in a local bar, when Bercea Mondial, accompanied by several individuals, suddenly attacked them. The victim was taken to the Craiova County Hospital where dozens of police officers were also brought to prevent a possible follow-up on the scandal on the hospital premises.


HIGH-PROFILE CONNECTIONS


Over time, Bercea Mondial has developed ties with high-profile political and justice figures. Also known by the name of ‘King of Slatina Money’, Bercea has made a fortune from trading scrap iron and luxury automobiles.


The first important person who became a relative of Bercea’s is the president’s brother, Mircea Basescu, who baptised one of his grand-daughters. However, the crime head made his biggest image move in 2009, when he parties at the Roma Festival in Costesti next to President Basescu and his wife, and gave the first lady a gold pendant. On the same year, the presidential family attended the wedding of Bercea’s daughter and Bercea went to the president mother’s funerals. Sandu Anghel has also managed to relate himself in the same way with judges or key-people in the Olt local administration.

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