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November 20, 2019
JUSTICE POLITICS

Senate passes Law that offers increased immunity to the CCR judges: They can be detained, arrested or searched only with the approval of the Court plenum

The Senate has adopted, as the decisional body, two draft laws amending the Law no.47/1992 on the organization and functioning of CCR, which provide the way of electing the judges and the fact that they can be detained, arrested or searched only with the approval of the Court plenum.

“CCR judges can be subject to criminal prosecution, arrested or searched or sent to judgement only with the approval of the plenum of the Constitutional Court, at the request of the Justice Minister, notified by the General Prosecutor of the Prosecution Office attached to ICCJ. The approval is given with the vote of two thirds of the CCR judges, after the judge in question was previously heard”, provides the draft law amending the Law no.47/1992 on the organization and functioning of the Constitutional Court, initiated by the MP belonging to the Minorities, Adnagi Slavoliub.

The draft law provides that for offenses committed by the CCR judges, only the Prosecution Office attached to the High Court of Cassation and Justice (PICCJ) can conduct the criminal investigation and send them to judgement, while the jurisdiction for the judgement belongs to the High Court of Cassation and Justice (ICCJ).

“In the event of a flagrant offense, CCR judges can be detained and searched, the Justice Minister immediately informing the CCR President and requesting, as the case may be, the approval of the Court for the criminal prosecution and arrest” reads the draft law.

The judge who is sent to judgement can be suspended by the decision of the CCR plenum adopted by the vote of two thirds of the CCR members.

In the event of an acquittal decision, the suspension shall cease, and in the event of a final conviction decision, the mandate of the CCR judge shall cease by the law, according to the quoted source.

The judge who was appointed for the remaining term of another judge can be appointed, at the renewal of the Constitutional Court, for a full 9-year term, according to an amendment proposed by the PSD MP Florin Iordache in the Legal Committee of the Deputies’ Chamber and adopted by the elected representatives.

“When the mandate ceases due to the expiration of the term for which the judge of the Constitutional Court was appointed, he or she can opt-out to be a lawyer or a notary public, without holding any exam” the draft law also provides.

The adopted law also brings changes related to the calculation of the CCR judges’ pension.

“The judges of the Constitutional Court with a seniority of at least 25 years in the legal field or in the higher law education, regardless of their age and of the date of the retirement, will benefit, at their request, from a retirement pension  equal to 80% of the calculation basis represented by the monthly gross employment indemnity and by the increases he or she had. For each year exceeding the above mentioned seniority, 1 percent of the calculation basis will be added to the pension amount, without exceeding it. The pension established this way is updated according to the monthly gross employment indemnity and to the corresponding increases of the judges of the Constitutional Court” according to the quoted source.

The retirement pension  of the CCR judges can be cumulated with any income earned.

At the end of their mandate, as a result of the expiration of its term or of the impossibility to exercise it due to health reasons, the judges of the Constitutional Court benefit from an amount equal to the net indemnity for 6 months of work, also reads the draft law.

Senators adopted this draft law in the Wednesday session, with 81 pros, 19 cons and 4 abstentions.

The senate also adopted the draft law amending the CCR Law, initiated by the PSD MP Eugen Nicolicea, with 93 pros and 11 cons.

It is related to the amendment of art.5 para.(4) of the law and provides, in the form proposed by the Legal Committee to the plenum of the Senate, that each Chamber of the Parliament appoints, at the proposal of the Standing Bureau and based on the recommendation of the Legal Committee, as the member of the Constitutional Court, the person who received the majority vote of the members who were present. The draft law was tacitly adopted by the Deputies’ Chamber on June 28, 2016.

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