Ex-President Traian Basescu posted on Facebook a harsh message for journalists who blame him of waging a fight against the judiciary. He emphasised that 100 persons investigated by the DNA have been acquitted so far this year, after serving 3,000 days in pre-trial arrest, and the prosecutors and judges who ordered their pre-trial arrest should be arrested for abuse of power and for destroying destinies and careers.
“Over 100 people investigated in DNA cases have been acquitted this year. They served over 3,000 days in pre-trial arrest. I believe the prosecutors who asked for the pre-trial arrest of these people should be arrested immediately for abuse of power or malfeasance in office, because they falsified evidence. They should be arrested immediately alongside the judges who approved the arrests. This would be just because they destroyed destinies and careers because that is how they wanted to be seen on television, as anticorruption fighters,” the former Head of State commented on Facebook, answering questions about one of his postings on judiciary topics and the “division of press hirelings.”
Basescu also stated that the presumption of innocence is essential for the rule of law and claimed that even a murderer is entitled to it, otherwise we risk reverting to “people’s courts” or passing sentences “through clicks in front of the television set.”
“Even a murderer has the right to a fair investigation and a fair trial, and until a judge finds him guilty the presumption of innocence works. I’m sorry, but this is a fundamental principle of the rule of law. Otherwise we would revert to the 1950s and trials on stadiums, or more recently through clicks in front of the television set,” the former Head of State wrote.
His comments come after he posted on Facebook a text titled “Justice has to be protected from those who do injustice in the judiciary,” in which he expressed his discomfort with the “division of press hirelings” who accuse him of opposing the anticorruption fight because he criticised the intensive media coverage given to those placed under pre-trial arrest or for backing the redefining of malfeasance in office.
“Justice has to be defended from those who do injustice in the judiciary!
“If you say that parading handcuffed defendants before the DNA, with all television channels invited to do live broadcasts, does not respect rights guaranteed by the Constitution, the right to defence, or the presumption of innocence, the division of Romanian press hirelings trumpet to the people, on orders, that you are against the anticorruption fight.
“If you dare say that malfeasance in office is erroneously and arbitrarily defined in the new Criminal Code, considering that Romania ratified the United Nations Convention Against Corruption, through law no.365/2004 (see Article 19), which, according to the Constitution, takes precedence, the division of press hirelings trumpets to the people, on orders, that you oppose the anticorruption fight.
“If you dare reply to an incorrect SRI [Romanian Intelligence Service] communiqué or to an incorrect statement made by Ms. Kovesi, the division of press hirelings will accuse you, on orders, that you oppose the fight against corruption.
“My conviction is that we are at a point in which we have to defend justice right from some people who are members of the judiciary, or from some who want to use the judiciary in order to attain political or personal objectives. And I’m saying this with the moral right I have as a politician that fought for 10 years a staunchly opposed political class, who went through two impeachments in order for the judiciary to make progress.
“Any journalist has the right to contradict my points of view, especially if by chance he read the Constitution or law no. 365/2004. We could debate, and the public and democracy would stand to gain.
“But when I’m seeing an entire division of journalists who incorrectly accuse me, in chorus and on command, placing me in the ilk of those who fight against the judiciary, I really feel the urge to say publicly: lame this division of press hirelings.
“Justice has to be defended from those who do injustice in the judiciary,” Traian Basescu wrote on his Facebook account.