Update: Prosecutor General Lazar and Justice Minister Toader on closing the GEO 13 file: It took too long

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Prosecutor General Augustin Lazar (photo 1) and Interim Justice Minister Tudorel Toader (photo 2) have commented on Tuesday on the decision made by the  Prosecutor’s Office upon the High Court of Cassation and Justice (ICCJ) to close down the file on Ordinance 13.

Lazar said that prosecutors have always considered the content of the Constitutional Court’s decision and their decision is to stop the investigation.

“Our colleagues, after completing the papers in the file, have always taken into consideration the content of the Constitutional Court decision. It is their decision to stop the investigation and to close down the file under these conditions, in order not to exceed the limits of constitutionality, which are very clearly stated by the Constitutional Court decision. The prosecutors are independent magistrates and they are not going to do anything but to observe the decisions of the Constitutional Court, which are mandatory for everyone,” Augustin Lazar said when arriving at the CSM offices.

In turn, Minister Toader said the decision to close down the file on GEO 13 was “necessary and natural”, but added that it took too long.

“Remember that at the end of March, beginning in April, I was saying (…) that the prosecutor cannot continue the investigation against the decision of the Constitutional Court and the solution to close it down is as natural as possible ( …) it’s a pity it lasted so long,” Tudorel Toader said at the CSM offices.toader justice minister

The Prosecutor General’s Office has closed down on Monday the file probing into the adoption of the controversial emergency ordinance no.13 that triggered ample street protests this winter. The ordinance had been adopted by Grindeanu Cabinet and aimed at amending the criminal codes and decriminalizing certain corruption offenses. One of the provisions referred to setting a threshold of RON 200,000 for the offense of abuse of office.

Public debates on threshold for abuse of office

The threshold to be set for abuse of office comes into attention again. Interim Justice Minister Tudorel Toader has suggested a new round of public debates on this topic, whereas the Prosecutor General Augustin Lazar believes the issue should be closed and there is no need to set up a threshold for abuse of office, digi24.ro informs.

“A Public Ministry’s viewpoint is on the website. We believe there’s is no need for a threshold and the first proposal submitted by the Justice Ministry was very clear in this regard, we support this proposal,” Lazar said.

On the other hand, Tudorel Toader said two public debates have been launched. “Tomorrow we will have debates with the civic society, we will analyse the possible options,” Toader added.

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