Finance minister, charged with influence peddling in a corruption case, subpoenaed for hearings

Finance minister Darius Valcov was heard by the anti-corruption prosecutors on Friday night. He is suspect in a file regarding alleged crimes committed during his term as Slatina mayor, judicial sources told local news agencies. The case also targets two other persons.

Later or after the hearing, DNA informed he is charged with influence peddling, being suspected of intervening, in his former quality of Slatina mayor, in favour of a businessman to obtain some contracts. The businnesman would have promised Valcov 20 percent of the cashed sums.

Prosecutors claim that Darius Valcov used to receive the 20 percent commission in tranches of RON 400,000 up to RON 1 M in carrier bags. Some suspects in the file even stated that the Finance minister used to meet them in the cemetery to get his money.

In this case, the incumbent mayor of Slatina, Minel Prina has been placed under house arrest on Saturday night, under the charges of influence peddling.

Darius Valcov served two mandates as Slatina mayor, since 2004 until 2012.

He has been a democrat liberal member since 2000 but he resigned from PDL in 2012 and in 2012 parliamentary elections he won a senator seat on behalf of the Social Democrat Party (PSD).

He was minister delegate for budget since August until December 2014 and since December last year he has been Finance minister.

The main English language press agencies reported that Romanian Finance minister’s investigation in a corruption case represents a strike for PM Ponta’s Government who expressed support towards his minister on Saturday.

Ponta assured that the Tax Code project “in which Darius Valcov had and will have a leading part” will go further “at any cost and in any political context.”

“The most important project of the Government in 2015 is the Tax Code (in which Darius Valcov had and will have a deciding role!). I want to give guarantees to everyone that this project goes further, at any cost and in any political context! The economic development of the country is directly linked to the adoption and implementing of this new Code, which can be done due to the labour of the people in this country and to the results of the governance of 2012-2015!,” Ponta wrote on his Facebook page Saturday morning.

corruption caseDarius Valcovfinance ministerhearingsNational Anti-corruption DirectoratePM Victor Pontaslatina mayorsubpoenaedTax Code
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