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CSM issues negative opinion on the dismissal of Prosecutor General Augustin Lazar

The Superior Council of Magistracy (CSM) prosecutors’ section has issued a negative opinion to the proposal of Justice Minister Tudorel Toader to dismiss Prosecutor General Augustin Lazar. Only one vote was in favour of Augustin Lazar’s revocation: Tudorel Toader’s. The other five votes were against the revocation.

The session was tense. The Justice Minister has ignored the recommendations in the Cooperation and Verification Mechanism (CVM) report to abandon the proceedings, and insisted on dismissing Augustin Lazar from office. On the other hand, the Prosecutor General has accused Tudorel Toader of interfering in the investigation into the violence of the August 10 protests and of abuse, digi24.ro reports.

The CSM prosecutors’ section had on Monday a public sitting in order to issue a consultative opinion of the proposal filed last month by Minister Tudorel Toader to dismiss the Prosecutor General. According to the procedures, the minister was invited to explain the request, then Augustin Lazar had the chance for defence, followed by questions from the prosecutors.

The opinion issued by CSM is consultative and most likely Justice Minister Tudorel Toader will not consider it, given that he has already sent to the Presidency the assessment report on Augustin Lazar’s activity, the basis for requesting his dismissal.

President Klaus Iohannis announced after Toader’s demarche that he would not make any decision until the court decides on the challenge filed by the Prosecutor General against the proposal.

The CSM opinion regarding the former National Anticorruption Directorate (DNA) chief prosecutor, Laura Codruta Kovesi, was also negative. This did not prevent the Justice Minister to send the dismissal proposal of Kovesi to President Klaus Iohannis for approval. According to the Constitutional Court decision this summer, the head of state has the only option to sign the Justice Minister’s proposal, without the right to challenge it or to send it to Parliament.

About Valeriu Lazar