Prime Minister Victor Ponta said on Wednesday that if his brother-in-law has done something illegal, he will pay like “any man in this country”.
‘If my brother-in-law has done something illegal, he will pay. But you should not expect of me to play a petty drama that I’ve seen at the others, like ‘between justice and family, I choose justice’; let’s be serious, it is not a matter of choice. Justice is doing its job. I cannot do it and I do not wish to do it, nor have I planned in any way to do it and there is no way I can influence it whatsoever. If he is guilty, he will pay like any other man in this country’, Ponta said at the Palace of Parliament.
When asked if he considers tendering resignation as he had suggested former President Traian Basescu when a corruption row involving his brother Mircea had broken out last year, Ponta answered he does not name magistrates.
‘I cannot influence and I do not name magistrates and I have no legal task as regards the judicial system, as you very well know’, he explained.
When asked if the involvement of relatives in judicial probes is denting his image, the prime minister answered: ‘Categorically yes’.
Catalin Ivan: “Sebastian Ghita has done terrible damage, permanently, to Victor Ponta”
PSD MEP Catalin Ivan discussed the relation of PM Victor Ponta with Deputy Sebastian Ghita.
“I would not rush to associate Victor Ponta with the crimes in the file. It is a file that appeared today, we have scarce information yet. Ponta is the one who demanded Sebastian Ghita to leave PSD, which was a decision we all saluted”, Catalin Ivan declared for Realitatea TV.
In MEP Ivan’s opinion, Sebastian Ghita, former PSD Deputy, “has done terrible damage, permanently, to Victor Ponta in the party. “It is certain that this man, Sebastian Ghita has done terrible damage, permanently, to Victor Ponta. It was a political damage, and I’m referring at the party here. Victor Ponta’s relations with several local leaders of the party were affected by Sebastian Ghita’s behaviour, who used to call them, yell at them and threaten them and behave like sort of a landlord. As if he had bought himself a party. Sebastian Ghita behaved like we were his employees at one of his companies. The fact that he was kicked out from the party by Victor Ponta was a salutary decision. Sebastian Ghita is definitely an interesting character; wherever there’s something bad to happen, Sebastian Ghita is somewhere close”, the PSD member of the European Parliament concluded.
PNL’s Gorghiu: Ponta can no longer remain PM; it is too high a luxury
National Liberal Party (PNL) Chairperson Alina Gorghiu maintains that Prime Minister Victor Ponta should resign from office, also making reference to the scandal involving his brother-in-law Iulian Hertanu.
“Victor Ponta had a fair speech when Mircea Basescu was detained. The Prime Minister asked for Traian Basescu’s resignation, saying that a personal sacrifice was needed. Victor Ponta can no longer remain prime minister. Not only because his closest friends and relatives are investigated for corruption offenses. His incompetence, lie and abuses are as many reasons for which Victor Ponta no longer has the moral and political legitimacy to run Romania’s Government. Romania cannot afford him any longer in such an important office. It is too high a luxury for a country like Romania,” Gorghiu wrote on her Facebook account.
Victor Ponta’s brother in law, taken into custody by Anti-Corruption prosecutors
National Anti-corruption Directorate (DNA) prosecutors on Wednesday submitted a request to the High Court of Cassation and Justice to approve a 30-day preventive arrest measure in PM Victor Ponta’s brother-in-law Iulian Hertanu’s case of tax evasion.
Iulian Hertanu was taken into custody by the authorities on Tuesday night.
According to a press release from the DNA, Iulian Hertanu, a shareholder of SC Grossman Engineering Group SRL, is being charged with creating an organised crime ring, illegally changing the destination of European funds and tax evasion.
Held in the same file were other three persons, namely Mihail Marian Coman, manager/associate at SC Indserv SRL Ploiesti and SC Indserv Proiect SRL Ploiest and an employer of SC Hidro Prahova SA (in his capacity as the advisor to the general manager since May 24, 2012); Vladimir Razvan Ciorba, manager/associate at SC CVR Asfat Construct Group SRL Dobroesti, Ilfov County, SC CVR Activities group SRL Bucharest and SC Gefam Pro SRL Dobroesti, Ilfov County; Liviu Munteanu, manager at SC Grossman Engineering Group SRL.
The prosecutors also asked for the approval of the preventive arrest measure for them.
Criminal proceedings and the judicial review measure were also initiated against Mircea Cosma, President of Prahova County Council, Deputy Vlad Cosma, the son of Mircea Cosma, and Deputy Sebastian Ghita.
PM Ponta’s brother in law, Iulian Hertanu, is accused of having fraudulently gained the contract for extending the plumbing in Comarnic, and Sebastian Ghita, Vlad and Mircea Cosma are accussed of pressuring SC Hidro Prahova, the company of the County Council applying the European project, so that the respective companies would be granted the contracts, so that they would be granted delays of the deadlines stipulated by the contracts and receive money illegally while the project was applied.