Update: The General Prosecutor’s Office has officially announced that Laura Codruta Kovesi is criminally prosecuted for several corruption deeds (bribe taking, abuse of office and false testimony) and is under judicial control for 60 days.
Former National Anticorruption Directorate (DNA) chief prosecutor Laura Codruta Kovesi, who was been charged and placed under judicial control on Thursday by the special section for investigating magistrates, went to the police precinct not 18 in Bucharest on Friday morning to sign the judicial control order in the file of Nicolae Popa’s repatriation.
Kovesi is charged with three corruption charges, she is banned from leaving the country and from making statements on the case to the mass media.
She reiterated on Friday that she is not allowed to talk about this file and about the judicial control, yet stating that it is attempted to stop her from taking the European chief prosecutor position.
Asked how this judicial control is jeopardizing her chance to become European chief prosecutor, she replied:
“I repeat, I am not allowed to talk about this preventive measure. If we refer to the candidature, I ranked first following the technical committee’s evaluation, and there are ongoing negotiations between the European Parliament and the Council. We’ll how it ends. We’ll see if everything that happened lately will affect this procedure. It is obvious and very clear that everything that has happened in the past months is related to me running for this position. It is attempted by any means to stop me from taking this seat. It is obvious I am part of a harassment, intimidation campaign. I am a signal to the other colleagues who just want to do their jobs. But, to the same extent, I am convinced that prosecutors and judges in Romania will do their job and will not allow to be intimidated.”
“I am a prosecutor who has done her job for 24 years, I proved through my professional activity that I fought efficiently. I am a prosecutor who managed to inspire fear to those who want to steal in peace in Romania,” she added.
Also on Friday, Kovesi has challenged the judicial control preventive measure to the High Court of Cassation and Justice (Romania’s Supreme Court).
The ICCJ will judge her appeal on April 3.
Laura Codruta Kovesi is facing several restrictions, including leaving the country and speaking to the press about the file, for a period of 60 days. She is also banned from speaking to the Prosecutor General, Augustin Lazar.
On the other hand, the international press has kept on reporting on the latest developments in Kovesi’s case. Yesterday, in an article entitled “Romania intensifies action against ex corruption fighter“, Financial Times reported that the judicial control ordered against the former anti-corruption head in Romania represents a new “political move to stymie Laura Codruta Kovesi getting EU crime job”. Read more here.