JUSTICE

DIICOT’s 2017 activity report: 10,287 cases solved, 3,940 defendants indicted. More than RON 488 million recovered in 2017, up from RON 209 million in 2016. Chief prosecutor Horodniceanu: Attacks on Public Ministry weaken judicial system and reduce strength of Romanian state

In 2017, Directorate for Investigating Organized Crime and Terrorism (DIICOT) prosecutors solved 10,287 cases, down 21.88% year-on-year, and indicted 3,940 persons, up 1.91%, shows the DIICOT activity report for 2017.

According to the DIICOT, 3,940 defendants (up 1.91% year-on-year) were indicted, including 1,275 defendants in pre-trial detention (down 6.93% year-on-year).

According to the report, DIICOT prosecutors noted a total of more than RON 665 million and almost EUR 14 million in damage caused in the dossiers handled last year, while in 2016 the total damage surpassed RON 441 million and EUR 37 million.

The total value of goods with lien on in the files solved in 2017 by the DIICOT was RON 488,484,952, compared to RON 209,037,298 in 2016, according to DIICOT’s 2017 activity report.

In 2017, there were 24,709 cases pending (down 3.69%), out of which 12,220 new cases recorded during the reference period (down 20.31%), compared to 25,657 cases in 2016 (of which 15,334 were new cases registered in 2016). Thus, in 2017, pending cases were fewer by 948 (down 3.69%) and new cases were fewer by 3,114 (down 20.31% year-on-year), according to the activity report.

The average number of cases per prosecutor thus dropped from 105.15 cases per prosecutor in 2016 to 102.52 cases per prosecutor in 2017.

According to DIICOT’s activity report, in 2017 prosecutors solved 10,287 cases, representing a decrease of 21.88% compared to 2016, when 13,168 cases were solved.

The average number of solved cases per prosecutor dropped from 45.71 in 2016 to 42.68 in 2017, representing a year-on-year drop of 6.62%.

Of the cases solved, 7,191 were solved on the merits of the case, compared to 8,149 cases solved in that manner in 2016, representing a drop of 11.76%, while 3,096 cases were declined or merged, compared to 5,019 cases declined or merged in 2016.

At the same time, as many as 13,600 people were investigated by the DIICOT in 2017, down 10.99% compared to 2016 when 15,279 persons were investigated.

In what concerns the indictments, the average number of cases solved via indictment or agreement to plead guilty grew from 6.08 per prosecutor in 2016 to 6.36 per prosecutor in 2017.

Of the 7,191 cases solved last year, 1,843 were solved within six months, 1,855 were solved within a period of six months to one year, and 3,480 cases were solved after more than a year. Likewise, last year 13 cases were solved after the statute of limitations deadlines were reached.

 

DIICOT’s Horodniceanu: Attacks on Public Ministry weaken judicial system and reduce strength of Romanian state

 

Prosecutor-in-chief of the Directorate for Investigating Organized Crime and Terrorism (DIICOT) Daniel Horodniceanu stated on Tuesday that the institution’s efforts to strengthen the organised crime fighting capacity were undermined by the agenda related to the debates on the justice laws, adding that the attacks on the Public Ministry only manage to weaken the judicial system and reduce the strength of the Romanian state.

“We need more coordination and cooperation at the level of the entire national system of organised crime fighting. Obviously our efforts to strengthen the capacity to fight organised crime have been undermined by the agenda related to debates on the justice laws. As for this issue, we have constantly tried to express our stances and points of view regarding 2017’s great debate, the Justice laws, through an expression strictly within the limits of our legal prerogatives,” Daniel Horodniceanu stated at the presentation of the DIICOT report on 2017.

He added that the proposals for the amendment of the Justice laws could become a “chip” in the prosecutor’s independence.

“It is true that, on the one hand, I gritted my teeth and, on the other hand, I refused compromises in order to be able to remain within this framework, because the challenges have been huge. It is an effort to stay within the limit I am talking to you about, once you understand, by reading the proposal for the legislative amendment, that directly or indirectly what will happen could become a chip in the prosecutor’s independence, a disheartening, where it will find a place, of the prosecution exercise,” the DIICOT Prosecutor-in-chief underscored.

According to Horodniceanu the attacks on the Public Ministry only weaken the judicial system.

“Any behaviour on behalf of a magistrate, such that it brings his/her criminal or disciplinary accountability, must be sanctioned in an exemplary manner as soon as possible. What must not happen is the generalisation of criticism in relation to part of or to the entirety of the judicial system. The attacks brought to the Public Ministry in corpore or to a directorate or division belonging to the latter only weaken the judicial system in its entirety and reduce the strength of the Romanian state. Just as in any other area, the errors and deviant behaviour must be approached and amended or removed point by point,” Daniel Horodniceanu specified.

 

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