The special parliamentary committee set up to amend the justice laws has Okayed on Thursday afternoon the establishement of a department “to investigate the corruption crimes in the judiciary system”, with opposition parties PNL and USR voting against it.
According to the amendment unanimously voted by the PSD-ALDE majority in the committee, the department to investigate crimes committed by magistrates is set up and will function within the General Prosecutor’s Office upon the High Court of Cassation and Justice and will “have the exclusive authority to carry out criminal prosecution for corruption crimes or related to the abuse of office committed by judges and prosecutors, including for the ones who are members of the Superior Council of Magistracy, as well as military judges and prosecutors.”
The committee chairman, Florin Iordache (photo), said that PSD had decided not to endorse anymore the establishment of a “directorate” to investigate magistrates, but “a department”.
Representatives of the National Liberal Party (PNL) and Save Romania Union (USR) had strongly opposed the department, arguing that, therefere, the DNA’s authority is shrunk.
Special committee amending justice laws resumed debates amid criticism
The special parliamentary committee has resumed debates on the judiciary organization law on Thursday morning amid the Opposition parties’ harsh criticism. The ruling Social Democrat Party has revised its stance over the magistrates’ statute, which was adopted last week.
Liberal deputy, Catalin Predoiu, former Justice minister stated that he and a part of the committee’s members had received the amendments filed by the National Union of the Judges in Romania to the judiciary organization law on Wednesday night to Thursday. Predoiu argues that the amendments are practically “boiling away” the National Anti-corruption Directorate’s authority when it comes to corruption deeds involving magistrates.
“Last night, at 12:30 part of the committee’s members received by mail more amendments proposed by UNJR regarding the special department within the Prosecutor’s Office to investigate magistrates. According to these amendments, the DNA’s authority in the case of the magistrates involved in corruption deeds is boiled away. It’s an attempted blow against DNA,” Predoiu argued.
He said that the National Liberal Party (PNL) will oppose the initiative and will ask that the debates in the special committee should be attended by all representatives of the judiciary system.
“It’s inadmissible to receive amendments at 12:30 at midnight, which haven’t been communicated or debated. It’s not a very good premise for this debate”, the PNL deputy said.
On the other side, the chairwoman of UNJR, which filed the amendments, says the special department to investigate the crimes committed by judges and prosecutors, to be set up within the General Prosecutor’s Office “is completely protected against any political decision”.