Elena Udrea said Monday night on Gandul Live that she had informed Traian Basescu about the accusations brought against SRI general Florian Coldea in an interview for HotNews.ro and that PSD MP Sebastian Ghita metaphorically said to Service chiefs George Maior and general Coldea that he would shoot them if they made a case against his brother similar to the one made in Mircea Basescu-Bercea Mondial case.
On Friday, Udrea had announced in an interview for HotNews.ro that she had filed a complaint with DNA against interim-SRI head Florian Coldea. Udrea was accusing Coldea of having orchestrated the campaign against her and demanding her ex-husband Dorin Cocos to give Sebastian Ghita EUR 500,000 to support his TV station Romania TV. Udrea claims the money was given by Dorin Cocos through his son, Alin Cocos.
‘I have also told the president. If you want to know what he did, you’ll have to ask him. I don’t want to talk about what President Traian Basescu said. On the other hand, I am surprised everybody is waiting and trying to cause the president to respond. Wouldn’t it be simpler to first ask Dorin Cocos and Alin Cocos?,” Elena Udrea said on Gandul Live.
Udrea recounted again how she had found out about the whole story. ‘My ex-husband came and, as we were trying to clarify the story about that loan, he told me about that happening, asking me to set up an appointment for him with Mr. Coldea and Maior. I could say Dorin Cocos wanted to talk to them. I did not make the appointment, that meeting didn’t take place’, Udrea said. In the interview on Monday, Udrea said Sebastian Ghita ‘went to Mr. Coldea and to Mr. Maior and told them that, if they did to him what they had done to Traian Basescu regarding his brother, he would shoot them’.
She told about her ‘oscillating’ relationship with Sebastian Ghita, closer before PSD had come to power, but changed after Victor Ponta had become prime minister. ‘Sometimes we were communicating more in Parliament, even outside the Parliament, according to his momentary interest of sending out signals that he was closer to the PDL and president area, or closer to PSD and Victor Ponta’.
Udrea said Ghita was ‘many times’ telling her ‘things from the discussions he was having with the SRI heads’ and that he was aware of cases being made against him.
In this context, the PSD MP reportedly told her that he would shoot Maior and Coldea if they had made a case against his brother similar to the way in which the Mircea Basescu-Bercea Mondial case developed. ‘Obviously, it was metaphoric’ and evidently Sebastian Ghita ‘will say it is not true’. Elena Udrea noted.
Elena Udrea also said on Monday that ‘All big political men of the country are hidden under the table’.
Ex-Tourism Minister Elena Udrea is under criminal investigation in the Microsoft case for money laundering and misrepresentation in connection with her financial disclosure form, accused of obtaining and using assets she knew were bought with proceeds of crime, together with her ex-husband Dorin Cocos, Piatra Neamt suspended mayor Gheorghe Stefan, ex-Communications Minister Gabriel Sandu and businessman Dumitru Nicolae. Other eight ex-ministers are targeted in the same case: Senators Serban Mihailescu and Ecaterina Andronescu, MP Valerian Vreme, MEP Dan Nica, Daniel Funeriu, Alexandru Athanasiu, Mihai Tanasescu and Adriana Ticau.
In the ‘Gala Bute’ case, DNA on Monday requested the Parliament to approve criminal proceedings against MP Elena Udrea (accused of abuse of power) and Senator Ion Ariton, ex-Minister of Economy, on suspicion of corruption.
‘Even if I resign, Mr. Iohannis will still need to give his approval’
Coming to Police Station 2 in Bucharest on Tuesday, where she must report twice a week as part of the judicial control measure took by the prosecutors in the Microsoft case, Udrea was booed at by a group of protesters about whom the ex-minister said were ‘paid people’. She noted that, in the statements previously made, she hadn’t said she ‘expected’ to be arrested because ‘there is no reason for something like that’, but just that ‘abuses are so many’ that she did not exclude that possibility. Asked if she had considered resigning Parliament, Udrea replied: ‘Even if I resign, Mr. Iohannis will still need to give his approval’. The ex-minister categorically denied having committed anything illegal in the Gala Bute case, explaining that finding the money for organising it had been the job of ‘an entire apparatus in the ministry’ who found ‘the legal solution’. She also said that, in her opinion, ‘it is not illegal to try and find funds for promoting the image of Romania’. Asked to comment on the fact that her former subordinates had cooperated with the investigators, Udrea said: ‘I never expect loyalty and support from anyone. I know I’m on my own in this’. Elena Udrea also asked that her allegations against general Coldea should be checked, saying that ‘even if I was the most evil person in Romania, people still should wonder’. Elena Udrea also disclosed the fact that she had asked for ‘an appointment with the SRI people’ and invited the press to contact through lawyers her ex-husband Dorin Cocos, currently on remand, to clarify the disclosure on Sebastian Ghita’s visit to prison.
The MP stressed she was ready ‘at any time’ to go and give depositions to DNA if invited, but added she found it odd that it hadn’t happened during the 4 years that passed since the Gala Bute event.
Traian Basescu on ‘Udrea-SRI’ scandal: ‘I am having a very good time in the middle of my family‘
Ex-President Traian Basescu’s first reaction to the Elena Udrea-SRI scandal came Monday night, at the request of the Libertatea newspaper. The former president refused to become involved in the case and make any comment: ‘As you know, after the 21st of December 2014 I have made no public statement whatsoever and, for now, I haven’t changed my decision. I am having a very good time in the middle of my family’, Traian Basescu said in an email sent at the request of Libertatea.
ANI checks her wealth
Elena Udrea’s assets are being checked by the National Integrity Agency (ANI), after the inspectors took action last October, institution officials told Mediafax. The integrity inspectors are checking possible inconsistencies between the financial disclosure of PMP MP Elena Udrea and the assets and funds she owns.
Florian Coldea, heard by SRI Commission
The interim SRI head Florian Coldea will be heard on 9 February by the Parliamentary Commission for the Oversight of SRI. One of the topics of the hearings will be Elena Udrea’s allegations. The joint standing Commission of the Chamber of Deputies and Senate for parliamentary control over the activity of the Romanian Intelligence Service decided that, by the hearings date, SRI representatives should make available to the Commission the necessary information. The Chairman of the SRI Oversight Commission, Georgian Pop, told Mediafax news agency on Sunday that the hearings of the acting SRI leadership would be preceded by an internal probe at SRI on Udrea’s accusations.
CSM notifies the Judicial Inspection about Udrea’s statements
The leadership of the Supreme Council of Magistracy (CSM) has notified the Judicial Inspection with respect to the statements made by MP Elena Udrea affecting independence of the National Anticorruption Directorate (DNA) prosecutors and the judicial system.
‘Considering the latest public statements belonging to Elena Udrea, who is a member of the Deputies Chamber, in which she referred to activities carried out by the DNA, the leadership of the Supreme Council for Magistrates, under Article 30, paragraph 1, of Law No. 317 as of 2014 regarding the Supreme Council of Magistrates, has notified the Judicial Inspection to investigate if such statements affected the independence of the judiciary, or maybe even the judiciary as a whole, and also the extent of the damage,’ showed a release of the CSM sent to Agerpres.