Justice Minister: I will discuss the pardon issue with the PM. DNA head: Defendants won’t serve sentences, keep the money

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Justice Minister Florin Iordache has said Tuesday morning, before the Superior Council of Magistracy (CSM) sitting, that “amnesty should not be considered, but pardon should be” and he will discuss the issue with PM Sorin Grindeanu later in the day. Iordache admitted there is a draft bill to amend the Criminal Code and the Criminal Procedure Code (information released on Monday by hotnews.ro) which will be discussed by the parliamentary committees and the government will as well issue a point of view.

The Justice Minister said the last bill on pardon was issued in 2002 and the occupancy in prisons is of 150% now. He added that building a new prison house would last at least five years, hotnews.ro reports.

Iordache mentioned he has had talks with the penitentiaries’ representatives, with professional associations and the occupancy is too high.

“I will talk this over today with the Prime Minister. I believe it is an important issue. I bring along technical arguments,” the minister said. Currently there are by 8,000 inmates more than the level of 19,000 beds in prisons. “If the Romanians sentenced abroad are brought here, the occupancy would reach 200%,” he added.

Later on Tuesday, in an interview to Agerpres, the chief prosecutor of the National Anti-corruption Directorate (DNA), Laura Codruta Kovesi slammed intention to amend the Criminal Code, arguing that passing law regarding the amnesty or pardoning of some crimes that are in the DNA area of competence would impact on the anti-corruption fight, saying that “defendants won’t serve their sentences, and the money stays in their pocket.”

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