The Minister for Liaison with Parliament, Viorel Ilie (ALDE), was heard on Wednesday in the Legal Committee of the Senate, in order to prepare the report on the request made by the National Anticorruption Directorate (DNA) to start prosecution against him. Before the journalists, he claimed he is completely innocent, and his lawyer, who came to the hearing, said in his turn that prosecutor’s request is “totally ungrounded”. The Chairman of the Legal Committee of the Senate, Social Democrat Robert Cazanciuc, stated after Viorel Ilie’s hearing, that the report on DNA’s request to start prosecution against him will be issued at the next meeting of the committee.
“I have a bad experience due to a release that I gave exactly to try to clarify things. That’s what I asked today, too, to clarify these few things in the file. I thank to you for allowing me not to make any statements, given all the circumstances (…) I am completely innocent” Viorel Ilie claimed at the end of the hearing in the Senate’s Legal Committee.
In his turn, the lawyer of the Minister for Liaison with Parliament, Adrian Miclescu, said there is no evidence to support removing Ilie’s immunity.
“I said that the request to approve the criminal investigation is totally ungrounded. I did this after a very detailed study of the case. I presented, as much as somebody can present them in this somehow limited period of time, all the evidence from which it doesn’t appear, directly or indirectly, any direct or indirect criminal participation of the Minister – I am talking about statements of the witnesses, suspects and environmental recordings” Lawyer Adrian Miclescu stated.
On August 25, DNA requested to the Prosecutor General to notify the Senate in order to request the approval for the criminal prosecution of the Minister for Liaison with Parliament, Viorel Ilie, for incitement to the offense of using, in any manner, directly or indirectly, information not designed to be published or permitting access to unauthorized persons to such information, during his term as a Minister. According to the prosecutors, the Minister is suspected, together with three employees of the institution, that he “arranged” a contest for hiring public servants on contractual positions, so that certain candidates agreed by the Ministry’s leadership were supposed to these positions, to the detriment of others.
In the same case, the prosecutors of the National Anticorruption Directirate ordered the criminal prosecution against three employees of the Ministry – Felicia Elena Pop, the Cabinet Director of the Minister for Liaison with Parliament (MLP), Maria Alexandrescu, an employee of the MLP and a member of the contest committee, ad Mihai Cornel Zaharia, an employee of the MLP and a member of the contest committee,, also for the offenses of using, in any manner, directly or indirectly, information not designed to be published or permitting access to unauthorized persons to such information.
The request of the National Anticorruption Directorate on the criminal prosecution also against Viorel Ilie has been made in the context in which there are suspicions related to a contest for hiring public servants on contractual operational positions for an unlimited period of time, organized by the Ministry for Liaison with Parliament.
According to DNA, there are clues that this contest was rigged, so that certain candidates agreed by the Ministry’s leadership (including one very close person to the Minister Ilie Viorel) were supposed to take these positions to the detriment of others, and thus the criterion of competence became totally irrelevant.
The written test of the contest was set for July 31, 2017, and in this context, from July 20 to 31, 2017, Viorel Ilie, the Minister for Liaison with Parliament, intentionally determined Felicia Pop, the Minister’s Cabinet Director, to ask the members of the contest committee Alexandrescu Maria and Zaharia Mihai-Cornel to provide her with the subjects and correction scales for the written test, although she knew that this information wasn’t designed to be published, and that it will be disclosed to certain candidate who were going to give the written test. In the same day, the Cabinet Director Felicia Pop handed over the subjects and their solutions to the candidates who were agreed. In addition to the fact that they had access to the subjects of the contests and their solutions, obviously being favored towards the other candidates, it appeared that they have also prepared their works before the examination, as it was agreed, and the papers written in the examination room in the day of the test were supposed to be replaced with those already prepared at home by the favored candidates, according to the DNA prosecutors. Moreover, according to the list with positions from the Ministry’s staffing scheme, not all the favored candidates would have met the seniority requirements to be able to take the jobs. In this respect, prior to organizing the contest, Minister Viorel Ilie ordered the change of the list with positions so that hiring them was possible, according to DNA.
The request that was sent was accompanied by the report made by the prosecutors of the National Anticorruption Directorate, as well as by the volumes containing copies of the criminal prosecution file, according to the quoted source.