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March 8, 2021

Businessman Copos handed down final 4-year prison sentence in Lottery case

Romanian businessman George Copos has been handed down a final four-year prison sentence in Lottery I case, following a decision made by Bucharest Court on Monday.

The court dismissed an appeal lodged by Copos and maintained a ruling passed by Bucharest District 2 Low Court in Jan. 2013 by which it had sentenced the businessman for tax evasion.

The Court also maintained the other sentences in the case.

Thus, Roza Gilio Giuzepe, Ioan Stelian Ratiu and former Romanian Lottery manager Nicolae Cristea got four-year prison sentence each, to be served, while Gabriel Rogoveanu got a three-year sentence.

The court decided that Copos and Gilio Giuzepe (both combined with the sides held to civil account, i.e. companies SC Ana Electronic SA and SC RomTour GM Impex SRL), as well as Nicolae Cristea and Gabriel Rogoveanu should pay the National Tax Management Agency material damages totalling 3,946,112 lei and also pay additional fiscal dues (increases, penalties and interests).

Copos was prosecuted on June 6, 2006 on charges of tax evasion that inflicted over a million euros in damages to the state budget following transactions with the Romanian Lottery National Company.

Also prosecuted in the same case were Roza Gilio Giuzepe, a stakeholder in the companies owned by Copos – Ana Electronic, Ana Group, Ana Pan – and sole manager of RomTour GM Impex SRL, also a founding member of ProRapid Foundation and Ioan Ratiu Stelian, administrator of Transilvania International SRL.

Nicolae Cristea is a former managing director of the Romanian Lottery and chairman of the national company’s Administration Board, also a founding member of ProRapid Foundation, while Gabriel Rogoveanu is a house-sale agent at Euroest Invest SRL.

The Romanian Lottery purchased 38 commercial spaces from Ana Electronic chain, from its own resources, in 2004; the spaces covered 6,786 square meters and the deal was worth 5.1 million euros, namely 746 euros a sq m.

According to the investigating bodies, Copos, in his capacity of an associate to and chairman of Ana Electronic Administration Board, together with Gilio Giuzepe and with the support of Cristea and Rogoveanu avoided the payment of taxes, thus inflicting over a million euros in damages to the state at that date.

Copos is currently behind bars, after having been sentenced to three years and eight months in a soccer transfer case.

He is also facing justice in a case dubbed the Lottery II, being judged at Bucharest Court.


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