Anti-corruption prosecutors have announced on Monday they had prosecuted again former Tourism minister Elena Udrea and journalist and businessman Dan Andronic in the Hidroelectrica file after they had re-investigated the case, which had been previously rejected in a preliminary court over annulment of some evidence (e-mails).
Elena Udrea is charged with influence peddling and money laundering in this case, while Dan Andronic is accused of perjury.
Elena Udrea is accused of taking a USD 5 million bribe while he was minister.
According to the indictment, in November 2011, “Udrea accepted the pledge made by a businessman through intermediaries, to receive USD 5 million in order to exert her influence on the decision makers within the Economy Ministry and Hidroelectrica S.A. in the view of maintaining the contracts that the businessman’s company had concluded with Hidroelectrica, under the already negotiated conditions (price and supplied energy). Out of the promised sum of money, the defendant received, through intermediaries, EUR 3.8 million in November 2011, but also a debt worth EUR 900,000. The debt represented a sum that the businessman’s company had lend to a third party and which was guaranteed with shares of another company that owned two publications”.
“In order to hide that she was the real beneficiary of the EUR 900,000 debt (that would also give her the power to influence the activity of the media company), Elena Udrea has taken over the debt by interposing another front company, which belonged to one of her acquaintances”, DNA prosecutors also said.
As for journalist Dan Andronic DNA says he is charged with perjury, giving false testimonies on the main aspects of the file.
Andronic is accused of “having lied that he had no idea that Elena Udrea is the real beneficiary of the above-mentioned debt that would have allowed the former minister of Tourism to control the newspaper run by Andronic or to get involved in the publication’s editorial policy.”
Andronic would have also lied that he used to inform Udrea about the financial ratios of the daily newspaper “just to boast that the newspaper was going well”.
Anti-corruption body also argues that Andronic lied that “he had never asked Elena Udrea her permission to publish certain articles”.
The file has been sent to the Bucharest Court of Appeal.