President Traian Basescu announced on Friday that he has approved the Justice Minister’s request of initiating criminal proceedings against the five former ministers under investigation in the Microsoft corruption case., reported Agerpres.
“As regards the request filed by the Minister of Justice for the five former ministers, in connection to the Microsoft case, I have approved or more precisely, in legal terms, I asked the Justice Minister, and I informed the Prosecutor General about this request to the Justice Minister, to start criminal proceedings against Ms. Ticau Adriana, Mr. Sandu Gabriel, Mr. Athanasiu Alexandru, Mr. Tanasescu Nicolae Mihai and Mr. Funeriu Daniel,” Basescu told a press conference at the Presidential Cotroceni Palace.
He stressed that this case must be investigated as quickly as possible and be solved; he also mentioned there was no formal request for initiation of prosecution and that he has studied a great deal of the 13 binders he was provided with.
President Basescu pointed out that according to the documents in the file, “those investigated are not suspected of the same crimes”.
“For example, as regards Daniel Funeriu, there is no suspicion of bribe giving and so on. The possible charge is abuse of office,” the head of state argued.President Traian Basescu also declared that the Microsoft corruption case, involving nine former minister, was not opened on declarations of businessman Alexandru Bittner. “The state’s security organizations mentioned risks of the illegal management of that contract as early as 2009. As I saw the ‘bittnerian’ adventure, strongly marketed and supported, in my opinion this is deceit. This case was not opened on declarations or confessions of Bittner, which is not mentioned here. The security structures mentioned risks of incorrect management of this contract in 2009, and information was sent to the competent institutions. (…) It was extremely difficult to trace the route backwards, to the initiation of the contract, and up to date. I guarantee you nothing in this case comes from Bittner,’ the President said at the Cotroceni Palace.
‘It’s a thing started in 2009, and in 2014 some clarifications were obtained (…) as I saw all kinds of approaches like, ‘it came,’ ‘he gave them the file,’ ‘prosecutors can’t do anything.’ Those saying that could be suspected of thus serving other interests, and – excuse me – they might have done it out of naivety,’ he explained.
‘It was work of rogatory commissions with other states, but it was work started in Romania, based on notifications of the competent structures in 2009. Things moving faster or slower is a different story; and those who talked are only Romanians. No foreigner talked to DNA [the National Anticorruption Directorate] so far,’ Basescu maintained.
He added that, as regards the recovery of prejudice, some bank accounts were frozen.
Former SIE manager Teodor Melescanu declared recently that the echo of this corruption case “will not disappear easily”. “The story didn’t reappear becayse of us. The investigation came from the United States, so it is not something arranged by us, something you may suspect of political bias, as it frequently happened”, Teodor Melescanu said.
Questioned whether the Service he headed had contributed to this investigation with anything, the former SIE manager gave a negative answer and pointed out that the investigation was started by FBI, as Microsoft was an American company. “As far as corruption is concerned, Americans are definitely not kidding with their companies”, Melescanu added.