Darius Valcov, former Slatina mayor and former Finance Minister in the Ponta Government, stated on Monday at the High Court of Cassation and Justice (ICCJ) that he keeps no statement given after March 31, 2015 – in which he stated that it is possible that money from the companies of the businessman Teodor Berna, however not more than EUR 300,000, were used in the PDL electoral campaign – because, after he saw that criminal prosecution against him was extended, he realized he was deceived.
On Monday hearing, he asked a secret hearing, but the court rejected his request.
He began by saying: “I keep no statement given after March 31, 2015”. Then he described the circumstances of his arrest and those in which he gave the statement from March, 2015.
He said that on March 13, 2015, he was detained on the street, when he was leaving a TV station, and he was invited to DNA over one hour and a half, with a summons.
“I had no lawyer, I called a lawyer. I gave a statement as a suspect, and later the Parliament was asked to approve my prosecution and my detention for influence peddling” Valcov stated.
He told that on his birthday, on March 25, 2015, he was detained for 24 hours, “In a 2 or 3 meters room, together with 8 people”, with a 30-centimeter window , in the third bunk bed, 30 centimeters under the ceiling, and “the shock was extremely strong”.
“I told to the lawyers that I am willing to do anything not to go back in that room. The discussion was held at DNA. This is the reason for which, at the end of March, the prosecutor had a talk with me and my lawyers. He told me that he is empowered to propose me to get out of this situation with paintings inside the walls and money in cemeteries, and he asked me what I want. It was a deal. I told him I don’t want to go into custody anymore and that I can event take all the blame on me” Valcov reported.
He said that the lawyer presented two options, the first one being a 3-year agreement for suspension, if he accepts all the indictment, and everything is over.
Valcov mentioned what was the second option: “Prosecution will be extended for money laundering, letter rogatory will be sent in Switzerland, where my sister was working as a doctor, and my family will be disturbed, publicity will continue and I will go back in custody”.
Valcov told that on March 30, in the evening, he talked to his lawyers, and next day they went to DNA, requesting for the other defendants in the case to participate, but they were told that they refused the meeting; then, he proposed an agreement for admitting his deeds, not those in the indictment.
“The prosecutor said that this cannot be an admission agreement. He left me think for 30 minutes. I asked him to let me talk to his chiefs, because I had no guarantee that I will receive a suspended prison conviction and I had to lie. He left for 5 minutes and he told me that his chief, Mr. Popovici, is waiting for me. I wanted to talk to Popovici and to Mrs. Kovesi” Darius Valcov stated, saying that he was led to them by a commissioner.
“Both of them confirmed to me that everything that I discuss with the prosecutor is agreed by them, from top to bottom”, the former mayor underlined, adding that he returned to the case prosecutor, he asked him for a paper and a pen, and he wrote the statement dated March 31, in which he wrote that it is possible that in 2008 or 2009, during the PDL electoral campaign, certain amounts of money came from Theodor Berna’s companies, Tehnologica Radion or Plus Confort.
“I came back to the prosecutor and I asked him for a paper and a pen. I wrote the statement from March 31, by the hand. I knew I wasn’t a white dove. I knew that I participated in the PDL electoral campaigns, I participated in many electoral campaigns conducted with resources that are not always legal, and knowing that I am vulnerable, I accepted to make that deal. I wrote that it is possible that in 2008 and 2009, during the electoral campaign, certain amounts of money, not more than EUR 300,000, came from Mr. Berna’s companies, namely Tehnologica Radion or Plus Confort” he said, mentioning that the statement had 8 pages, and the lawyer and the prosecutor made annotations on the statement and where he was supposed to write.
“They said to me to give the statement also in front of a video camera. To read what I wrote and their annotations. After the video statement, a secretary typed the statement to a typewriter and I signed it. This is the reason for which I don’t keep that statement now. I realized that I was deceived after the prosecution was extended also for money laundering” Darius Valcov concluded.
He is judged in two corruption cases and prosecuted in another one.