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February 6, 2023

Bute Gala case: Chamber of Deputies approves DNA requests to prosecute and preventively arest MP Elena Udrea

The National Anti-corruption Directorate (DNA) requests on the initiation of the criminal prosecution and the preventive arrest of Deputy Elena Udrea were approved on Monday by the Deputies’ Chamber plenum.

The DNA sent to the Deputies’ Chamber a new request for the approval of the initiation of the criminal prosecution in the Bute Gala case, in which Elena Udrea is charged with new offenses. The request was approved in the plenum with 218 votes in favour and 76 against. The DNA request on the preventive arrest of Deputy Elena Udrea for having committed new crimes in the Bute Gala case was also approved by the Chamber’s plenum, with 170 votes in favour and 118 against. It was a secret vote, using balls.

On Saturday, the High Court granted Elena Udrea’s request for an exception to her house arrest rules to be able to be in Parliament to address the plenary session before the voting on her case.


Udrea: I was systematically hunted down


Elena Udrea said on Monday, in Parliament, that she was being systematically ‘hunted down’, that she was ‘the target of a precise action where secrets had to be guarded by handcuffing’ her. About the MPs vote for her arrest two weeks before, Udrea said ‘most were afraid of those with whom they were fighting and who tomorrow could do exactly the same thing to anyone who opposes’.

‘Exactly two weeks ago you granted six different requests against me. You approved them all under the fad ‘we do not oppose justice’. I have always said justice must operate in the same way for everybody. It would have sufficed that you only granted the prosecution requests’, E. Udrea said. ‘The exceptional character of my situation didn’t matter: an MP subject to three preventive arrest requests in two hours. It didn’t matter that I was obviously the target of a precise action where secrets had to be guarded by handcuffing me’, the MP further said.

‘It is obvious that I am a target. I am being systematically hunted down. At this rate I will see you again every two weeks until 2016 (…) Many of these charges are lies’, Udrea also said.

On the Gala Bute case where she is under investigation, she said it was ‘the clearest proof that the separation of powers no longer works’.

Elena Udrea also told the plenary meeting of the Chamber of Deputies that, pending her colleagues’ decision ‘I will not anoint myself with chrism or read prayers’, hinting at Varujan Vosganian’s recent case when he begged mercy from his colleagues in the Senate not to lift his immunity.


‘I was searched, they undressed me and took away my bra’


Elena Udrea also spoke about the conditions in the Bucharest Police lockups, saying that she was ‘checked to the skin and undressed’, that she had to use a plastic bottle as toilet cover to stop the rats from getting in and that she almost developed a pneumonia because of the draught in the room.

‘I was taken to the Bucharest Police arrest facility, I was searched, they undressed me and took away my bra. (…) I would have liked to come here before you in handcuffs, so that you could see, touch them and understand better’, the MP also said.

She called upon her fellow MPs to do their duty and be fair. ‘Do what the Parliament is supposed to do: adopt legislation, give fair laws to people so that the abuses that happen against tens of dozens of Romanians are no longer possible’, Udrea said.

Udrea also stated that the arrest request that the MPs were about to vote was based on denunciations, one coming from a friend of hers, possibly from Ana Maria Topoliceanu. “Learn that even today’s arrest request is based on denunciations, one coming from my friend who decided that she can remain free only if she rats out; not anyhow, but by putting pressure on others in the case too. We have proof of the way in which a person ends up being accused. If it was possible for me to stay under preventive arrest for a week based on denunciations, the same thing could happen to each one of you,” Elena Udrea told her colleagues in Parliament.




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