Prosecutor General with the Prosecution Service of the Supreme Court of Justice and Cassation Tiberiu Nitu (photo) believes setting up a judiciary police department at the Romanian Police made up by specialist judiciary police officers and agents to tackle exclusively criminal investigations in pending court cases is opportune.
“In my capacity as head of the Public Prosecution Service, I believe the time is opportune for us to add efficiency to the provisions of Article 131 in the Romanian Constitution. Allow me to remind you about the contents of Article 3 thereof. ?Prosecutorial offices shall operate with the court houses, lead and supervise the criminal investigation activity of the judiciary police, as mandated by the law.’ You can notice that the reorganisation of prosecutorial offices is closely related to the reorganisation of the judiciary police. The specialist departments of the Public Prosecution Service – the National Anti-Corruption Directorate (DNA) and the Directorate for the Investigation of Organised Crime and Terror (DIICOT) – have special police officer corps and the efficiency of their working methods is validated by the their remarkable results. The time has come for us to set up a similar system at the level of the entire Public Prosecution Service. To this end, I believe the establishment of a judiciary police department at the Romanian Police made up by specialist judiciary police officers and agents to tackle exclusively criminal investigations in pending court cases is opportune,” Nitu told the participants in Justice Day celebrations at Justice Palace in Bucharest.
He underscored that “the organisational reform of the judiciary that started in 2004 is consolidated, and the most important gain as far as the Pubic Prosecution Service is concerned is the de jure and de facto imposition of the status of prosecutors as magistrates.”
“That status means to us and the citizens a guarantee that we can do our job impartially and independently. We all know and recognize the important steps of the past years in raising the quality standards of justice. We have been beneficiaries and architects of reforms,” added Nitu, according to Agerpres.
He said “justice is first of all a public service.”
“Consequently, one of the most important criteria to assess justice, the work of judges and prosecutors is the public opinion’s perception of our business. As you know well, the public trust in justice has been on a rising trend for a long time now. Moreover, a May opinion poll reveals that 30 per cent of Romanians believe the judiciary to be the most imprint public organisation of democracy, with other organisations mentioned by the pollster winning smaller confidence percentages,” said Nitu.
He also demanded support for measures to reorganise the prosecutorial offices and solve issues related to the unbalanced distribution of human resources inside the Public Prosecution Service.
“Balancing the load, achieving uniform jurisprudence at the level of the Public Prosecution Service, achieving rational organisation of the prosecutorial offices are also benchmarks in the Cooperation and Verification Mechanism. I believe the project for rational organisation of prosecutorial offices, along with the reorganisation of the judiciary police are essential and mandatory measures to complete the reforms of the last years. I am convinced that a rational reorganisation of the offices would lead to a balanced distribution of loads while avoiding the exiting vertical imbalances – among offices of different ranks – and horizontal imbalances – among equal-rank offices,” said Nitu.
He concluded by voicing hope that his desideratum will be met before the next Justice Day.
Cazanciuc: Unification of judiciary practice means predictability, essential to business environment, foreign investors
On July 5, Justice Day in Romania, Justice Minister Robert Cazanciuc spoke up in favour of judiciary practice in Romania being unified as that means predictability, which is essential to the business environment and foreign investors.
“Romania has been issued two country reports that consecutively mention its progress. And since we mention the country report, I would like us to pay attention to a remark in the latest document about non-uniform practice. Independence of magistrates for each case is no reason to disconsider the solutions provided in similar cases. Unification of practice means first of all predictability for the citizens and such predictability is essential especially when we talk about the business environment and foreign investors,” Cazanciuc told Justice Day celebrations at Justice Palace of Bucharest.
He pointed out that Romania needs economic development because economic growth alone can mobilise more resources to support the public healthcare, education, defence and justice systems.
“I said it before and I will repeat it as long as it takes: justice has a duty to the citizens and the business environment to issue predictable solutions in shorter terms. Unfortunately, we have not managed to enshrine the cooperation spirit from inside our system to the level of other state powers. Nobody can deny the right to private legislative initiative under the law, but such initiative must take into account the general interest of the society, instead of circumstantial interests,” added Cazanciuc.
He warned that justice should not be done on television, but in courts by magistrates.
“The vision of a solid, sound and durable justice system entails harmonisation of the way in which we understand to do our part. There are still too many public discussions on justice that unfortunately involve certain magistrates, who display too much eagerness in discussing pending court cases. There are too many court cases being discussed in the public. Justice is not done in Parliament, on television or in public debates by politicians. It is done in the court rooms by magistrates. We are consuming too much energy and too many resources in false debates on issues that have no beneficial finality for the citizens, and I would like us to focus on finding solutions to real problems,” added Cazanciuc.
He explained that “justice is a living mechanism that is endowed by law with internal levers for checks and balances, independent organisations empowered to verify the activities of judges and prosecutors, the same as there are ways to challenge court orders in court.”
“We must let these organisations fulfil their tasks and restrain ourselves, we who are outside the system, from issuing sentences against judges and prosecutors and also from labelling those who are called to account before judges before they are sentenced by court under a final and binding sentence,” Cazanciuc concluded, according to Agerpres.
CSM’s Tudose: Justice independence, leitmotif of the last years
Chairman of the Supreme Council of Magistracy (CSM) Marius Tudose on July 5, Justice Day in Romania, said over the past years, the local society, politicians, television channels and embassies have been the advocates of the same idea, namely justice independence.
“The leitmotif of the past years, amidst effervescent political life in Romania, media fights, personal and group stakes related to court cases underway or resounding sentencings, has been justice independence. The same as in a crusade, we all got trained, including the system, society, politicians, television channels, embassies, in the name of the same principle but in opposing camps, as adversaries using resounding weapons and strategies- almost all of which were inefficient, all advocating the same idea: justice independence,” Tudose told the Justice Day celebrations at Justice Palace in Bucharest.
Tudose said he wants to pay homage to justice “not necessarily through festivities, but rather through solemnity and just measure.”
“Modern justice and the democratic state are meant to secure the balance that is absolutely necessary to human and social becoming through the development of a genuine attachment to values and principles. They become universal by understanding and rational internalisation, in a space that guarantees fundamental rights and freedoms intrinsic to human dignity. The obligation to obey the law as far as meeting the expectations and needs for individual and social justice are concerned passes through the hands of the magistrates. And that should not pass without respect for the one in the court box and the society, without attachment to profession or devotion to the law. Only thus will Justice mean and be recognised as meaning an authority, a value and power in a state, no matter the court sentences in a given case or the number of guarantees enshrined in laws,” said Tudose.
In reference to the establishment of a select committee of the Senate to assess democracy and the rule of law in Romania, Tudose said justice independence is a fundamental principle of law guaranteed under the Constitution. ‘And the authority of Justice, respect and trust of the citizen in justice passes through the hands of magistrates. Full stop! The rest is detail that should not make any difference,’ added Tudose.
“Besides the internships, the professional ranks and positions held, besides the number of court cases, the routine of the investigations and court sessions, do we truly love our profession? Do we have the necessary internal strengthen to assume our human limits and understand that the privileges of our profession are mandatorily in exchange for something, and in no way a bonus? Can we see beyond personal experiences, challenges, competitions, contexts and image plays what separate us and what keeps us together? And if the individual answers are in the affirmative, can we go further in the service of independent justice that is made by the people for the people? That means what unites us as a vocation is stronger than what separates us as individuals. And it also means that justice is done even when sometimes public figures, indicted, sentenced offenders and their sympathisers or moderators experiment with televised justice,” added Tudose.
The CSM chairman underscored that certain aspects in Romania’s new codes of law could be adjusted and harmonised as they escaped the prior control of the Constitutional Court.
“I am calling on my judge fellows and urging them to display courage, clear vision and firmness of consciousness when making decisions about procedures susceptible of being affected by unclear or inconsistent rules. This is an individual professional challenge we are obliged to meet as judges before enforcing the law. I am inviting professional associations of magistrates to prove their true origins and meaning and act to increase internal system cohesion to consolidate fundamental solidarity in relation to exigencies and expectations of our profession. I am convinced that this can contribute to the development of a favourable climate to achieve high standards of occupational deontology and discipline by promoting models, references and values. At the same time, they can create platforms for professional debates that will lead to the materialisation of statutory provisions while providing the measurement of acquired organisational maturity,” added Tudose.
He also argued that in a competition among the state powers no one wins.
“A competition Amon the state powers, no matter who starts it and for what purposes, will never end with a ranking and prize awarding ceremony where the flag is raised and the state anthem is sung. Such a competition has no winners, but the society and citizens will certainly be its losers.(…) Consolidating a modern and efficient justice that generates trust is a complex, wide and deep process that entails regulation and self-regulation mechanisms at the level of the state, of the society and the citizens, besides the professional level. It is an equally collective and individual responsibility in which equation there are variables related to mentalities, policies, education and resources. The constants of the equation are good faith and consciousness,” Tudose concludes.
Iohannis: Any judiciary aims to prevent and identify corruption, while punishing the culprits
President Klaus Iohannis said Sunday, July 5, Justice Day in Romania, that any judiciary aims to prevent and identify corruption misdeeds, while punishing the culprits, which is true especially when it comes to the Romanian judiciary.
“Corruption is the enemy of free competition, a scourge that blocks civic development, foreign investment, private initiative and innovation. That is why preventing and identifying corruption misdeeds while also punishing the culprits are objectives of any judiciary, all the more so of the Romanian judiciary. The fact that there is such a pledged and commended effort to fight against corruption is first of all the merit of the honourable and devoted people of the Romanian judiciary,” Iohannis said in a message to the Justice Day celebrations on Sunday read out by presidential adviser Simina Tanasescu.
The president also said Justice is an essential component of the rule of law.
“Without the rule of law, there is no democracy, no separated state powers. A nation cannot truly progress in the absence of efficient justice. Justice in Romania has undergone profound changes over the last years that also included the judiciary, which became increasingly more efficient, modern and highly performing. As well as the legislative and organisational reforms, this outcome is to a very large extent your merit, the merit of the entire professional corps that dispenses justice.”
According to Iohannis, respecting the fundamental rights of the citizens, within the limits and rigours of the law, is still an essential coordinate in the activity of justice administration.
“We would have not had a justice that is equally commended by our foreign partners without the labour, seriousness and exigencies you display in carrying out your duties. Reforms so far have to a very large extent perceived as having been initiated or stimulated from outside the system. They can and have to be fully achieved from the inside as well. You will constantly find in Romania’s President a partner and constructive critic in the entire process. Yet, we should remember that justice is in the service of people and this principle is as important as the principles of justice independence, responsibility and equidistance.”
In his message, Iohannis also said the fight against corruption should continue.
“An extremely important part is played by you, members on the Supreme Council of Magistrates (CSM), as representatives of an organisation that guarantees justice independence. I want to congratulate you on the promptitude in your reactions and your public positions because you are deploying all efforts to penalise slippages and keep public discourse within the borders of balance and responsibility. Public discussions of late have been focussed mainly on the fight against corruption. It is very true that Romania is in the midst of a highly intense stage that is nonetheless necessary to the future of the country. The fight against corruption must continue and it is our responsibility to support it,” said Iohannis.
On Justice Day, celebrated annually in Romania on the first Sunday of July, Iohannis extended congratulations to judges, prosecutors, lawyers, notaries, jurists and court staff as well as to academics and all who are on the side of the law professionals that have a very important part in a society, namely making sure law is obeyed and the ideal of justice is achieved to the best of their ability.
Acting PM Oprea: Justice actions witness society’s developmental stages
Acting Prime Minister Gabriel Oprea says the Justice actions witness the stages in the development of a society, while also being an indicator of the national law enforcers’ determination to defend fundamental rights and freedoms.
“Justice actions witness the developmental stages in any society, while indicating the determination of the national law enforcers’ to defend fundamental rights and freedoms. I am commending, as any other good-faith Romanian does, the state organisations for their determined intervention in the fight against threats against national security, such as economic crime and corruption,” Oprea says in a message issued on Sunday, July 5, Justice Day in Romania.
In a press statement, Oprea is quoted as saying he supported and will continue to unreservedly support the Justice actions, voicing conviction that it is in the interests of all Romanians that Justice be strong. “As a matter of fact, Justice plays a special part in Romania’s progress, as it contributes to Romania’s positive picture and credibility abroad,” adds Oprea.
He also commends the organisations making up the judiciary and the ones making up the defence, public order and national security system for their cooperation, which he rates as rising.
“As far as I am concerned, you can rest assured that I will always be a promoter of the development and modernisation of the Romanian State’s organisations that are aimed at consolidating the judiciary,” Oprea says.
He also says Justice Day, annually celebrated on the first Sunday of July, is a good opportunity to celebrate the ones who brought their contribution to the change for the better of the Romanian judiciary. “Many happy return of the day to all whom we today owe our pride of a strong and independent Justice, the symbol of stability of the rule of law and the observance of citizens’ rights and good luck with enforcing and upholding the law!” Oprea concludes.