The Bucharest Tribunal on Thursday overruled the DNA’s request to place Craiova mayor Olguta Vasilescu under preventive arrest for 30 days. Therefore, the mayor was placed under house arrest for the next month.
However, the decision is not final and can be appealed, either by the anti-corruption prosecutors or by the mayor herself.
Vasilescu informed she would challenge the house arrest decision.
“What I can say is that no good benefit stays unpunished. Not even the prosecutor said today that I would have taken money from somewhere else. I build a hospital, a stadium in Craiova, rehabilitaiton works are under way. The mayors shouldn’t do anything, they should just go home,” the mayor said.
The ruling comes after the Social Democrat woman mayor has been detained for 24 hours for corruption charges in Wednesday.
Prosecutors accuse her of bribe taking (four crimes), of using her influence to obtain money and other undue benefits (three crimes) and money laundering. Judges from the Bucharest Tribunal will decide on Thursday if the mayor will be detained for 30 days.
“During 2012, on the occasion of the local elections for the Craiova city hall, candidate Lia Olguta Vasilescu determined several businessmen, directly or through some other people from the campaign staff, to make several donations. To obtain these benefits, the defendant used her influence over the businessmen, in her position of vicepresident of the county organization. <The donations>, estimated to EUR 135,907 were paid for publishing electoral materials but also for organizing electoral shows to support the defendant’s campaign,” reads the press release issued by the anti-corruption prosecutors.
Judicial sources told Agerpres that a company interested in obtaining public contracts with the local administration had covered the costs for the concert performed by Goran Bregovic in Vasilescu’s electoral campaign in 2012, including the expenses for the artist’s travel in Romania.
DNA also states that during 2014, Olguta Vasilescu would have pretended and received RON 544,209 from several entrepreneurs for a NGO. “More precisely, Olguta Vasilescu asked the businessmen who had ongoing contracts with the Craiova city hall to sponsor a NGO represented by Popescu Elena Daniela (who is also defendant in this case) for conducting several rehabilitation works on the facades of some buildings in Craiova,” DNA reveals.
Read more details here.