An appeal before Romania’s HCCJ
Romania’s High Court of Cassation and Justice (HCCJ) is expected to announce its verdict on Monday concerning an appeal put forward by a senator of the left-wing Social Demcratic Party (PSD). A previous HCCJ ruling issued last Tuesday stipulated that Senator Dan Şova should remain under preventive arrest by February 1. Mr. Şova is accused of influence peddling in the case of Mihai Bălan, a former head of the CET Govora, an electricity company in the Romanian southern town of Râmnicu Vâlcea, also under investigation. A bid to lift the immunity of Mr. Şova has fallen short in a parliamentary vote last March. Dan Şova is also involved in a corruption case against former Prime Minister Victor Ponta. According to prosecutors, Ponta forged expense claims amounting to around 39,750 euros during his time at a law firm belonging to Mr. Şova, a political ally and former government minister, using the funds to pay for luxury apartments and an SUV rental. Ponta also appointed Şova as a minister at least three times during his tenure as prime minister, constituting a conflict of interest.
Police raids in Romania’s capital and four southern counties
Police in the southern Romanian county of Ilfov conducted raids in the capital Bucharest and four southern Romanian counties including Ilfov, Ialomitza, Argeş and Prahova on Monday. Arrests warrants were issued against people suspected as car robbers or involved in similar property crimes. Ten men between 18 and 42 years of age are believed to be authors of thefts and robberies while some of them allegedly tried to bribe the police in their attempt to escape. The suspects are expected to appear before court for hearing. Questioning and further investigation is expected before suspects will be convicted for theft, robbery and bribe.
Hundreds of Romanian servicemen expressed their protest in front the Romanian government’s headquarters at Victoria Palace in the capital Bucharest on Monday. A delegation of servicemen was expected to hold talks with government officials on matters concerning the 13th wage and a rise of the minimum wage. The protesters insist they want their demands answered by January 24 while threatening further protests in case the government fails to solve the issue. „There will be no delegation for talks in January as we are all ready to take to the streets next time”, trade union leader Mihai Dogaru told Radio Romania.
Fewer New Year’s Eve parties
The Sector 3 City Hall in Romania’s capital Bucharest remains the only city hall in the city hosting an outdoor party celebrating the New Year’s Eve. It’s for the first time when the capital’s famous Constitution Plaza is not expected to host such party. The public authorities cite lack of money as the main reason. The only party in town, the Sector 3 party, will open on December 31 at 7:30 PM (local time) when Rapsodia Carpaţilor (Carpathians’ Rhapsody) Ensemble will perform in the sector’s Titan Park. Other performers include Ducu Bertzi, Proconsul, Andra, Grasu XXL, Hara, ROA, Zoly Toth Project and Fly Project. A laser light show will entertain an audience invited to attend for free.