POLITICS

Intricacies of Supreme Court corruption case

The interconnections between the Supreme Court judges targeted by the National Anticorruption Directorate (DNA) and the lawyer probed in the same file start surfacing to light. Judiciary sources quoted by Mediafax said yesterday that Nicolae Manigutiu, a judge with the High Court of Cassation and Justice (ICCJ), lives in an apartment rented from lawyer Radu Silinescu Gherbovan, the husband of Claudia Silinescu Gherbovan, who is accused in the case that also has Gabriela Barsan and Iuliana Pusoiu as suspects. According to a phone conversation intercepted by prosecutors, the magistrate lives in an apartment rented from Radu Silinescu Gherbovan, and he signed a contract providing that the rental fee will be covered by the supreme court, but the declared fee was higher than the sum actually paid, the sources explained. Under the acting legislation, courts may cover the rent paid by magistrates up to the limit of EUR 600 a month. In this context, according to the sources, “there is a negative morality problem for the magistrate” that may turn into a criminal issue if it is proved that the judge granted the lawyer a preferential treatment at a certain moment in the past. In the same case, lawyer Claudia Silinescu Gherbovan spent several hours Monday at the DNA head offices, where she witnessed the unsealing and booking of the pieces of evidence taken by prosecutors from her home, but the sources that participated in this operation did not explain what documents or items were taken during the home search.

Referring to the recent case of corruption at ICCJ, Morar said that one of the suspect judges applied for retirement, same as 12 other magistrates probed by the DNA. According to judiciary sources quoted by Hotnews, the judge that wants to retire is Gabriela Barsan, the president of ICCJ’s Administrative Contentious Department. In this context, the head of the DNA criticised the fact that magistrates which are sentenced for crimes related to their job may still take their service pension. Morar however stopped short from making any explicit reference to the ICCJ case, only saying that it is part of another file.

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