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Bucharest
December 3, 2020
JUSTICE

JusMin: Committee inventorying secret intel archives starts working; member names, not of public interest

Justice Minister Tudorel Toader on Wednesday announced that a committee was set up to inventory the classified archives of the Anti-Corruption and Protection Independent Service (SIPA), refusing to unveil the name of the committee members by claiming their names are not of public interest.

“The SIPA committee is made up of five members and three alternates, as provided for in the governmental decision. Two come from the Justice Ministry, two from the Government’s General Secretariat, one from the National Penitentiary Administration (ANP) and one alternate each from the three authorities. Yesterday, I decided on the composition of the committee under a ministerial order. We have met today at the National Penitentiary Administration. They proceeded with selecting their chair, as requested under the governmental decision. They have their regulations that regulate their business under the governmental decision. They have entered the archives hall for the first time and started working. They stayed there, and the first part of their job is to inventory the archives,” Toader told a news conference.

He refused to unveil the names of the committee members, so that they will not be asked every day by journalists about what they have found in the SIPA archives.

“You asked me if I can tell you the names of the committee members and alternates. Of course, I can, but I will not. Because it is an internal order, an order that sets into motion a governmental decision and it is a measure that will protect our colleagues on the committee. Contrariwise, you would keep asking them each day about what they have seen; the full names of the committee members are not of public interest. What I can tell you is that each of them meet the legality requirements, meaning they are certified to work with confidential and secret intelligence,” said Toader.

He refused to say whether he has sent to the Prosecutor’s Office attached to the Supreme Court the conclusions of the report on the persons who had gained unauthorised access to the SIPA archives, as announced on Sunday on his Facebook page. “You’ll be able to get this information from the Public Ministry, not from the Justice Minister. The Justice Ministry puts at disposal all documents, respecting each document’s status. The Justice Minister does not have criminal dossiers. Regarding criminal offences, ask the Public Ministry,” Toader told journalists.

Referring to the Supreme Magistracy Council’s (CSM) representative within this SIPA commission, Tudorel Toader pointed out he did not receive any proposal from the Council and that he invited professional organisations, courts and prosecutor’s offices to nominate a representative only after 21 days. “Each person can draw a conclusion from this delay. If the CSM comes up tomorrow and says magistrate ‘X,’ holder of an ORNISS certificate, in office, active, wants to be member of the commission, I’ll make him a member of the commission,” Toader added.

Asked whether the Justice Ministry issued any approval on the amending of the law that allows those who received criminal convictions to hold positions within the Government after they are rehabilitated, Tudorel Toader refused to answer, arguing that the topic of the day consists of the SIPA archives.

“I stopped by to talk to you in order to tell you about the SIPA archives, knowing it’s a sensitive topic, a topic that has been on the public agenda for 12 years. This is the topic, this is the topic for which I stopped and talked about. Other topics… at a press conference, the moment my agenda allows it,” Toader added.

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