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October 26, 2020

Spy “Floricel”, sentenced to 12 years and 6 months in prison for treason

Judges with the Bucharest Court of Appeal (CAB) Friday sentenced Army NCO Floricel Achim and Bulgarian national Marinov Zikolov to 12 years and 6 months in jail each on charges of treason and espionage, Agerpres reports. The verdict is challengeable by appeal.

Romania’s Constitutional Court rejected March 5 of this year the exception raised in the case wherein Army NCO Floricel Achim and Bulgarian citizen Marinov Zikolov have been tried for treason and spying. The case was returned to the CAB. In November 2009, the supreme court admitted the exceptions raised by the lawyer for one of the defendants, who claimed as unconstitutional for a civilian prosecutor, instead of a military one, to investigate the case. Romania’s High Court of Cassation and Justice (ICCJ) has therefore suspended the trial and sent the case to the Constitutional Court (CCR) to have its say on the issue. On June 24, 2009, prosecutors with the Organized Crime and Terrorism Investigation Department (DIICOT) indicted Floricel Achim, an Army NCO, and Bulgarian national Marinov Zikolov for treason by means of conveying secret information, and for espionage respectively. Two of Achim’s superiors, Mihai Fercheluc and Dragos Petrisor, charged with negligence over keeping state secrets, remained free during the trial. According to DIICOT, during 2002-2008, Achim and Zikolov had developed a clandestine system under which the Army NCO procured state documents containing secret information or data whose conveyance endangered state security. Prosecutors established data had been stolen during the NCO’s working hours, when he had access to the unit’s computers, by directly downloading the information onto external hard drives.

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