Ex-top Social Democrat Niculae Bădălău taken into custody for corruption

He is accused of having intervened to award public contracts to the companies he controlled.

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The magistrates of the Bucharest Court of Appeal decided on Monday the preventive arrest of Baron de Giurgiu Niculae Bădălău, at the request of the DNA, which a day ago detained him for bribery, in continuous form, and influence peddling. Bădălău, current vice-president of the Court of Accounts – is accused of giving a 170,000 euro bribe to a mayor from Giurgiu county, in exchange for the award of public works contracts.

The former Social-Democratic leader Niculae Bădălău had been previously detained, for 24 hours, by DNA prosecutors a day ago.

The National Anti-corruption Directorate said that Badalau, on the date of the facts, accountants’ advisor within the Court of Accounts of Romania and vice-president of the Audit Authority within the same institution, is accused with bribery, in continuous form, and influence peddling.

“On 09.08.2022 and 19.11.2022, the defendant Bădălău Niculae, in the capacity mentioned above, allegedly claimed to a commune mayor to award a contract regarding “Rehabilitation of drinking water supply system…”, estimated at the value of 7,071,925 lei without VAT, to a company managed by a relative of his, allowing it to be believed that he has influence over a person in the management of the National Investment Company (C.N.I.), whom he would have promised to induce to ensure the financing of two projects submitted to this institution by the respective town hall.

During 2021-2022, in the context of the development of a contract that the same town hall had concluded with the same commercial company, regarding “Establishment of a water supply network…”, the defendant Bădălău Niculae, through the other person investigated in this case, i – would have offered the mayor more sums of money so that in return he would continue to make payments to that company, even for non-compliant works,” DNA said.

“At the same time, after, on November 19, 2022, the defendant Bădălău Niculae allegedly promised the mayor to remit a percentage of 7% of the value of the contract mentioned above (4,903,959.97 lei without VAT) but also from a future contract, the award of which he sought to obtain for the same company from the respective town hall, on November 25, 2022, through the same businessman, would have remitted to the mayor 35,000 lei, representing part of the promised sum of money. In total, the defendant Badălău Niculae would have promised the mayor the total amount of 170,000 euros, which represents 7% of the value of the two contracts,” the anti-corruption prosecutors also said.

DNA investigators have information from which it appears that the former politician, who left the PSD in 2020, when he took over the position of vice-president of the Court of Accounts, would have intervened in institutions for the awarding of contracts financed by public money for his children’s companies, companies that were actually controlled by him.

Niculae Bădălău was leader of PSD Giurgiu organization, MP for three terms and Economy minister from 2018 o 2019.

The Court of Accounts of Romania told a press release, that it “reiterates its position of supporting the judicial act” against Niculae Bădălău, detained by the DNA for bribery and influence peddling. At the same time PSD has filed a request in Parliament to terminate Badalau’s mandate as vice-president of the Audit Authority and adviser of accounts.

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