The draft law on amending the Criminal Procedure Code on a vote of 175 – 78 and one abstention was passed on Monday night by the plenary sitting of the Chamber of Deputies, as decision-making chamber of the Romanian Parliament.
The parliamentary committee for the systematisation, unification and insurance of legislative stability has adopted a favourable report with amendments to the bill on the Criminal Procedure Code.
Here are the main amendments as passed by the said committee: the unjustified absence of the lawyer cannot have juridical consequences for the culprit; in making a decision on the existence of a crime and the guilt of a defendant, the court decides with a reasoning, by sending to all the evidence assessed, the sentencing is decided only when the court has the certainty that the accusation was proven beyond any doubt; the precautionary measures for special confiscation or extensive confiscation can only be taken on the assets of the suspect or defendant or of other persons who are in possession of the assets about to be confiscated, if evidence or solid evidence exist that the assets in the case were obtained from criminal activities; the precautionary measures cannot exceed a reasonable duration and will be revoked if this duration is exceeded if the reasons had in view when they were established do not exist anymore; upon verification during the trial, if the papers or evidence are found null and void, they are eliminated from the case, regardless of the solution pronounced during the prior check; the appeal in cassation in favour of the culprit can be ruled at anytime.
The chairman of the Committee for the justice laws, social-democrat deputy Florin Iordache on Monday said in the plenary sitting that PSD wishes through this initiative of amending the Criminal Procedure Code, to put an end to abuses and urged the Opposition MPs to ignore ‘the party order’ and bring Romania back to ‘normality’.
‘I do have a lot of elements that sustain the adoption of this initiative (…), please vote them with your mind because we really wished to put an end to abuses. The presumption of innocence, the presentation of certain people handcuffed who over time have proven innocent – we want an end to all this. We also want to establish the random distribution of the criminal files to the magistrates,’ Iordache said at the debate of the CPP amendments.
He explained that it is not true that evidence is destroyed or that certain pieces of evidence are not considered.
‘The moment one has a warrant and finds a very good piece of evidence, that piece of evidence is tagged and bagged and another warrant is brought and another file is open,’ said Iordache.
Florin Iordache also said that in practice, criminal files are only made following some clues, and three years after that person is acquitted, hence ‘we want this bill put an end to abuses. We are sick and tired of abuses, we are tired of justice through protocols. I even urge you to take a look at each amendment we have brought, they are amendments drafted by listening to everybody. (…) We want to bring Romania back on the normal track. We’ve had enough of abuses,’ Iordache added ahead of the Chamber of Deputies’ final vote.
PNL’s Turcan addressing parliamentary majority: You passed law to your direct leader’s advantage
National Liberal Party (PNL, opposition) leader Raluca Turcan stated on Monday after the plenary of the Chamber of Deputies adopted the bill amending the Criminal Procedure Code that the majority’s deputies have passed a law to the advantage of their “direct head”, Liviu Drganea.
“Today you have provided the best reason for many of you, of the government majority, should consider voting for the censure motion that we intend to lodge on Wednesday. If this censure motion passes, then Mr. Dragnea’s cap will collapse and I believe that the group with criminal behaviour that has unfortunately hijacked PSD [Social Democratic Party, PSD, major at rule, ed.n.] will be sent home, away from public money, because the only reason for you to stand by Mr. Dragnea’s side is access to resources. It is a reality, from the very moment you seized power, all you could think of was how to grab Justice, to control it and save party leaders and at the same time to whitewash their files. Today you have given proof again that you have passed a law to your direct leader’s advantage. An entire country should grasp this and the honest parliamentarians in the Opposition, fair parliamentarians who still exist, I believe, in the government majority, together with the civil society should unite and remove this group with a criminal behaviour who are subordinating, one by one, all institutions and eventually Romania. You should go away and not just away from governing, but away from this institution,” Turcan said.
PMP: Objective of ruling coalition is for Romania’s criminal legislation to be subordinated to PSD
The objective of the ruling coalition is for Romania’s criminal legislation to be subordinated to the ruling party, the Social Democratic Party (PSD), reads a People’s Movement Party (PMP) press release issued on Monday.
According to the cited source, the speed of the adoption process of the Criminal Procedure Code, including the final vote, demonstrates the “discretionary and political affiliation character of some people with serious urgent criminal issues.”
“The Criminal Procedure Code follows a line drawn by the events that took place during this PSD-ALDE [Alliance of Liberals and Democrats, minor at rule, ed.n.] government, as was the case of the Ordinance 13, the insistence on the revocation of the National Anti-corruption Directorate (DNA) Chief Prosecutor, the amendments to the Justice laws. The objective of the ruling coalition is for Romania’s criminal legislation to be subordinated to PSD,” the press release said.