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Bucharest
September 20, 2020
JUSTICE

ANRP, a bottomless piggy bank for litigation rights peddlers

Compensation rights granted by the National Agency for Assets Recovery (ANRP) in the years of full real estate boom, but also immediately afterwards were in the centre of attention of anti-corruption prosecutors in 2015. And the value of the damage brought to the state budget by compensations dozens of times higher than the real value of the real estate property that could not be returned physically exceeds hundreds of millions of EUR. Which is ten times the budget of the National Anti-Corruption Department for the year that has recently ended.

Certainly though, the saga of paying hallucinating sums granted by ANRP may lead to a script for an Oscar – worthy gangster movie, in case any inspired script writer in Hollywood decides to write a story inspired by the backstage of this public fund robbery organized under the umbrella of a state institution that seems almost especially created for peddlers.


ANRP 4 file

The latest file in the ANRP saga is, by far, the most spectacular. The case centered around Deputy Ioan Oltean, former Democrat-Liberal leader, shows that the activity of ANRP was most frequently guided by financial or love interests of the Compensation Committee members, who preferentially distributed enormous compensations of dozens of millions EUR.

The faster a file passed through bureaucratic procedures, the faster the commission was cashed by the persons who made things happen, prosecutors declared.

Ioan Oltean was considered the political protector of the 2010 ANRP management – that consisted of Crinuta Dumitrean, Chairman of ANRP, and Sergiu Diacomatu, Vice-Chairman of the authority.

At the recommendation of the political superior, Crinuta Dumitrean and Sergiu Diacomatu allegedly managed to persuade their colleagues to approve the file of businessperson Mihai Rotaru.

Mihai Rotaru made a million dollar business on state funds, DNA accuses, He bought by the end of 2009 the litigation rights on a lot in Pitesti. He paid EUR 750,000. Half a year later, despite of a heavy decline in the prices, he was gaining compensation of almost EUR 25 million from the state.

The lot could not be recovered per se. It was just that the land itself cost at most EUR 5 million, so the rest was a damage caused to the state, investigators pointed out.

Mihai Rotaru had other expenses nonetheless. He allegedly paid EUR 600,000 to Ioan Oltean so that the latter would help him pass as soon as possible the procedures of the Compensation Committee. Not in a random way, but right in front of Our Lord, namely in a church.


ANRP 3 File

The summer of 2015 revealed another compensation in the chart of the highest granted by the authorities was granted under dubious circumstances. This time, Horia Simu was the protagonist.

He gained in 2007 litigation rights on a lot in Bucharest District 3, evaluated at that point at EUR 30 million.

Horia Simu paid EUR 1.5 million for the litigation rights. The state could not return the property as it was, thus the businessman demanded compensation in shares at the Proprietatea Fund worth almost EUR 100 million.

The almost 70 million EUR gained from the state over the real value of the field fueled Horia Simu’s hunger of art. After home searches completed at the businessman’s home, prosecutors seized almost 200 paintings.


ANRP 2 File

The year 2015 brought the beheading of the Integrity Agency after Manager Horia Georgescu was detained for three files approved in 2008, when he was holding a chair as a member in the Central Committee for Establishing Compensations.

The demands approved illegally – as prosecutors say – were submitted by businessman Valentin Visoiu, owner of a real estate company. The committee led by Ingrid Zarour, that also included Horia Georgescu, granted him in 2008 compensation of EUR 80 million. The applied recipe was the same as in the case of the compensation earned by Horia Simu.

Litigation rights purchased for ridiculously low sums, compared to the value of the compensations received from the state. The damage to the budget amounts to over EUR 60 million, as estimated by the prosecutors.

The support came this time from the Vice-Chairman of the Committee, ex-Deputy Theodor Nicolescu, who allegedly earned almost EUR 1.5 million to pass the file as fast as possible through the Compensation Committee.


ANRP 1 File

The first compensation file was launched in 2015. The case that led to the arrest of former Head of DIICOT Alina Bica also revealed the receipt.

The field that represented the object of the scandal that sent the former Head Prosecutor of the Organized Crime and Terrorism Investigation Department Alina Bica to the defendants’ bar is located in Plumbuita Park. The old location of the Brick and Ceramic Stoves Factory, that once belonged to Sinigallia family, could not be returned physically, because of the fact that the field has become a part of the public domain of the state.

Heirs could not struggle with bureaucracy, so they sold the litigation rights to businessman Gheorghe Stelian. As a good friend of Dorin Cocos, Stelian demanded his help. And gained it after a few discussions with former Vice-Chairman of ANRP, Sergiu Diacomatu, as both admitted in Court.


ANRP 1

Compensation granted Gheorghe Stelian in 2011

* Lot: 130.535 square metres

* Litigation rights: EUR 1.5 million

* Received compensation: EUR 84.78 million

* Prejudice: EUR 61.7 million


ANRP 2

Compensation granted to Valentin Visoiu in 2008

* Lot: 205,000 square metres

* Litigation rights: EUR 2.7 million

• Received compensation: EUR 105 million

* Prejudice: EUR 60 million


ANRP 3

Compensation granted to Horia Simu in 2008

* Lot: 97,509 square metres

* Litigation rights: USD 1.5 million

* Received compensation: EUR 128.2 million

* Prejudice: EUR 70 million


ANRP 4

Compensation granted to Mihai Rotaru in 2010

* Lot: 61,857 square metres

* Litigation rights: 750,000

* Received compensation: EUR 25 million

* Prejudice: EUR 20 million.

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