MISA leader Gregorian Bivolaru released on parole; served 14 months of his six-year prison sentence

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Gregorian Bivolaru, the leader of the Movement for Spiritual Integration in the Absolute (MISA), sentenced to six years in prison for sexual intercourse with a minor and imprisoned at the Bistrita Penitentiary, was released on parole on Wednesday, since Bistrita Court’s ruling was not challenged and thus remained final. Gregorian Bivolaru served one year and two months of his sentence.

Upon leaving the penitentiary, asked how he feels, Bivolaru answered: “Very good.”

Likewise, asked what his plans are in the following days, the MISA leader answered: “I’ll see, I’ll write books.”

The decision to release on parole the leader of MISA – after serving one year and two months of his six-year prison sentence – was taken by Bistrita Court magistrates on September 7 and remained final since it was not challenged.

The leader of MISA was apprehended in France, on 26 February 2016, and was extradited to Romania on July 22, in order to serve a six-year prison sentence ruled by the High Court of Justice on 14 June 2013, for sexual intercourse with a minor. At first, in April 2012, Sibiu Court magistrates had acquitted Bivolaru.

Gregorian Bivolaru left the country in August 2004, after he was indicted. Eight months later, he was arrested in Sweden but asked for political asylum, Swedish authorities accepted his request. From then on, Swedish authorities rejected all extradition requests.

The leader of MISA demanded the reopening of the trial in which he was convicted to six years in prison for sexual intercourse with a minor, but his request was rejected by the Alba Iulia Court of Appeals in March 2016.

In court, Gregorian Bivolaru said he is in a “tragic” situation and compared it to that of Jesus Christ, who was also “unjustly criticised.”

Bivolaru was also indicted in a dossier in which he was charged with human trafficking, but the Cluj Court acquitted him in February 2015.

Gregorian Bivolaru is also targeted by an Italian investigation, in relation to MISA’s activities, the accusations levelled against him including the recruitment of youngsters for sexual orgies and pornography.

In 1977, MISA’s founder was convicted to one year in prison for the copying and spreading of pornographic materials, occultism and black magic. In 1984, he was convicted to one year and a half in prison for escaping from the Securitate headquarters. Back then, a rumour started to circulate among his followers that his escape was made possible by special yoga techniques. Immediately after the 1989 Revolution, Bivolaru established MISA, a movement that ended up having 40,000 followers in the country and abroad.