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Justice Minister beats off attacks against emergency ordinance on wiretapping

Justice Minister beats off attacks against emergency ordinance on wiretapping

 ‘No Securitate direction has been set up’.

Justice Minister Raluca Prună denied the criticism saying that the emergency ordinance on wiretapping has actually created another communist Intelligence department within the Romanian Intelligence Service (SRI), stressing that Romania cannot fight terrorism in a “amateur-like” way.

“All this criticism that we’ve set up I don’t know what Securitate department are completely ungrounded. Actually, according to the title 10 in the Criminal Code, SRI is only keeping its responsibilities on national security and terrorism, which it used to have before the Constitutional Court decision. Considering the decision limits a lot the “criminal prosecution body” definition to prosecutor and police officers, there was no other solution. I invite everybody who criticised this ordinance, to have a look on the latest terror attacks and wonder if we afford countering terrorism in ‘an amateur-like’ way (…) I have no regrets that I’ve done this,” minister Prună told journalists before attending the General Prosecutor’s 2015 balance sheet.

She explained that SRI’s part on criminal prosecution consists only of putting into execution the technical surveillance mandates. “Those who say that SRI will arrest and detain anyone on the street I tell them that these accusations are totally irresponsible and ungrounded. Criminal prosecution exclusively belongs to the prosecutor,” the minister added.

The Supreme National Defence Council  (CSAT) has given a favourable opinion last Friday on the emergency ordinance on wiretappings.

The ordinance draft states that the phrase “other specialized state institutions” will be eliminated from the Criminal Procedure Code. The emergency ordinance is to introduce clear indications that the evidence are obtained directly by the prosecutor, by the criminal investigation bodies or by specialized Police employees and the way the mandates are enforced will be under the control of the president of the High Court of Cassation and Justice (ICCJ – Supreme Court) or by a prosecutor appointed by him.

On the other hand the law on the Romanian Intelligence Service (SRI) organisation will be modified to unequivocally define the technical surveillance disposed on a national security warrant from the interceptions made by prosecutors.

About Alina Grigoras Butu