Two former mayors on trial in EUR 900,000 fraud case

Two former mayors of the Prahova County commune of Paulesti have been brought to trial because they allegedly presented to the SAPARD Agency untrue data in order to obtain funds for a sewerage system and a used water cleaning station, by that defrauding the European and national budget of a total of EUR 900,000. The National Anti-Corruption Directorate – the Ploiesti Territorial Service prosecutors have referred to court Ioan Serban, mayor of Paule?ti, Prahova County from 2000 to 2004, and Dumitru Dinca, mayor of the same locality between 2004 and 2008, on charges of use or presentation of false documents or statements and fraud with exceptionally grievous consequences. The trial is due to commence on April 28 at the Prahova Tribunal. The prosecutors say that, in 2003, Serban Ioan presented untrue data on the existence of the financing sources needed for the implementation of an investment in a new sewerage system and used water cleaning station in Paulesti, Prahova County, under a contract between the Local Council and SAPARD. The project beneficiaries unduly obtained EU funds and money from the national budget in the amount of RON 3,395,118.26 lei, the equivalent of EUR 895,440.94.

Serban Ioan’s successor, Dinca Dumitru, also presented to the SAPARD Agency a number of counterfeit documents and obtained undue non-repayable European funds and money from the national budget in the total amount of RON 3,221,052.3 lei, the equivalent of EUR 849,532.28 . The Agency for Rural Development and Fisheries set itself up as a civil party to the criminal trial, demanding RON 1.8 M, because the damage had been partly recovered. To retrieve the rest of the damage, the prosecutors have frozen the defendants’ movable and immovable assets.

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