Senate Speaker Calin Popescu Tariceanu has sent an open letter to President Klaus Iohannis on Wednesday, asking him to sack Prosecutor General, Augustin Lazar, following allegations that Lazar would have refused to release dissident Iulius Filip from prison during the Communist regime. Prosecutor General has dismissed all accusations.
„Today you have the opportunity to prove that the independence of justice that you are claiming every day is not just an electoral slogan, but a principle in which you truly believe,” Tariceanu says.
The Senate speaker voiced „his indignation regarding a situation of an extreme gravity that has got through the media in the past days”, reproaching the head of state of not reacting to the accusations against PG.
Tariceanu said the case of the PG Augustin Lazar is „shocking” and that urgent clarification is needed amid media information claiming that Lazar would have been part of the communist prosecutors who graduated the famous Bran School.
At the same time, Tariceanu asks the President to immediately sign the decree to dismiss Lazar from the PG office, and to thus prove that „the independence of justice is not just an electoral slogan”.
According to some allegations released in the mass media, the Bran School used to be a school of the Securitate former political police that trained magistrates, judges and prosecutors, to arrest, investigate and sentence to prison, or even to death the dissidents of the communist regime.
Iulius Filip was a anti-communist dissident and former political prisoner during the communist regime. Together with other political prisoners and dissidents he wrote a letter asking for Nicolae Ceausescu’s removal and for Romania’s democratisation and sent this letter to the Conference for Security and Cooperation in Europe convened in Vienna in May 1988. Following this initiative, he was investigated and tortured by Securitate for 5 days. After that, he was compelled to leave Romania in ten days. Filip, together with other opponents, had filed papers to emigrate in the US anyway. He eventually left for America and returned in Romania in 1997.
In retort to these accusations, PG Augustin Lazar told g4media that he cannot confirm aspects regarding Iulius Filip. In a press statement, Lazar though mentions that the committee he was part in the mid-80s as criminal prosecutor did not have the task to release prisoners from jail, but to examine if the convicts were qualifying for the minimum mandatory fraction of the jail time.
In his turn, Mădălin Hodor, researcher at the National Council for Studying the Securitate Archives (CNSAS) said on Wednesday that the information on Lazar and dissident Iulius Filip is fake news, as the dissident was investigated by a lieutenant colonel Lazar Gheorghe.