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January 23, 2021

Bucharest General Mayor Oprescu remains under preventive detention

The Bucharest Court of Appeal on Monday dismissed an appeal filed by Bucharest General Mayor Sorin Oprescu against his preventive detention and decided Oprescu will stay under preventive detention for bribe taking accusations levelled by the National Anticorruption Directorate (DNA).
The court decision is final.

EUR 25,000 bribe

Bucharest Mayor Sorin Oprescu was arrested by the National Anti-Corruption Directorate (DNA) on September 5, for bribe taking, after having received EUR 25,000 from four denunciators. The Mayor allegedly received the EUR 25,000 on Saturday from the manager of an institution in the Mayoralty, who has acted as an intermediary of the bribe.
The mayor was presented on Sunday to the Bucharest Tribunal, with a proposal for preventive arrest for 30 days.
“During 2013-2015, a well organized group, that also included defendant Oprescu Sorin Mircea, has founded in the local administration of Bucharest a system by which economical operators who wished to receive contracts from behalf of public institutions reporting to the Mayor had to pay a share of the gross profit they earned from completing the respective contracts as bribe, to decision makers inside the apparatus of the Mayor of the Municipality of Bucharest”, the ordinance of arrest, issued by the National Anti-Corruption Directorate (DNA) prosecutors points out.
According to the quoted document, the contract signer kept for himself from 30 to 33 per cent of the gross profit and the difference was paid to civil servants of the apparatus of the Bucharest Mayoralty, as a bribe. A share of ten per cent of the contract value was demanded for Sorin Oprescu.
“Actually, the members of the group, persons in top positions inside two public institutions reporting to the Mayor of the Bucharest Mayoralty facilitated the attributing of the contract, discussed with subordinated employees to accept the attributing documents as well as to approve and order the making of the payment of the invoices issued by the respective companies, shortly after they were issued, while demanding sums of money for persons in top positions in the apparatus of the Bucharest Municipality Mayor, as well as for the Mayor himself”, investigators pointed out.
According to Anti-Corruption prosecutors, on September 5, based on an initial agreement with the Head of a public institution reporting to the Mayoralty and a trusted collaborator of the Mayor, Oprescu allegedly received from the respective person EUR 25,000, from the total sum of EUR 60,000 demanded by the two of them from four persons who have denounced Oprescu.

PNL’s Gorghiu: Oprescu’s political exit resets the strategy of each party competing to replace him

Co-chair of the National Liberal Party (PNL) Alina Gorghiu says the trend in the options for the office of the Bucharest general mayor will influence the national elections elsewhere, and that the political exit of Bucharest General Mayor Sorin Oprescu is resetting the strategy of each political party competing to replace him.

“The trend in the options in Bucharest will be positively the one that will influence local elections nationwide. There will obviously be a closely fought battle and the political scores of the parties will certainly matter and so will the candidates. But the political exit of Sorin Oprescu, I believe, is resetting the strategy of each political party that wanted a candidate to the Bucharest [general mayoralty]. I believe it is very hard now to come up and take over the office and the ballast in the General Mayoralty before the local elections. PNL will be doing its job, either in power or in the opposition, in [securing] majorities for the General Council [of Bucharest],” Gorghiu told Antena 3 private broadcaster on Monday evening.

She explained that who takes over the interim general mayoralty is not as important as solving the real issues of Bucharesters, insisting that she will not run for the office of Bucharest general mayor.

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