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de Vladimir Ionescu , 27.11.2017
DNA prosecutors have seized the assets of the suspects in the Tel Drum case, including the PSD leader Liviu Dragnea.
The measure has been taken so that at the end of the possible trial, and if the court confirms the accusations formulated by the anticorruption prosecutors, authorities could recover from those guilty at least part of the damage of EUR 20 million and RON 31 million.
The president of the Social Democrats is accused in this case of acts committed at the time when he was ruling Teleorman County Council.
The offenses of which Liviu Dragnea is accused:
- the establishment of an organized criminal group
- two offenses of use or presenting in bad faith of documents or false, inaccurate or incomplete statements if the act has the effect of wrongfully obtaining European funds
- two offenses of abuse of office resulted in obtaining benefits for oneself or another person
Liviu Dragnea – seizure to competition of EUR 30 million
As far as the PSD leader is concerned, the prosecutors have seized the following, to the amount of 127,547,366.34 lei (about EUR 28 million) on the following:
- all movable and immovable property
- all his shares and shareholdings in private legal entities
- money from bank accounts
- amounts owed to him in any form, by third parties, including the amounts owed as rent.
Liviu Dragnea’s official wealth
In his last statement of June 2017, the PSD president noted:
- a land within Turnu Magurele boundary of almost 3,000 sqm (no value is specified but the city is one of the poorest)
- an apartment of 80 sqm in Turnu Magurele (the same, without mentioning the value)
- a commercial space with a built area of 1,529 sqm, also in Turnu Magurele
- a Skoda Superb bought and a BMW X5 coming from a donation from the relatives of his deceased brother
- about EUR 180,000 invested/borrowed in Turris Hotel in Turnu Magurele, which was in his former wife’s name, Bombonica Prodana, and was subjected to the partition
- USD 3,000 and nearly RON 38,000 in bank accounts
He earned in 2016:
- RON 76,838 – from his activity as Deputy
- 220,000 from a 2016 lease agreement and advance payment
- 630,000 from a sale-purchase promise on a plot of land and a building in Turnu Magurele (document signed in October 2016).
The assets that were seized on Tuesday (the assets of five accused) cannot even cover the damage. However, prosecutors may also discover amounts or properties resulting from the illegal activities under prosecution which magistrates would subsequently claim to cover the damage caused.
Ministry of Regional Development and European Funds and CJ Teleorman did not become civil claimant in the suit
The measures have been taken to recover the damage, says a DNA press release saying that the two institutions affected – the Ministry of Regional Development and European Funds and the Teleorman County Council – did not become civil claimant in the suit to recover the amounts of EUR20 million and RON 31 million:
“These precautionary measures have been ordered by anticorruption prosecutors for the purpose of recovering the damages and by reference to the offenses found against the suspects mentioned, depending on their participation in the offenses of which they are suspected.
The damage estimated so far as a result of the committed offenses of use or presentation in bad faith of documents or false, inaccurate or incomplete statements, if the act has the effect of wrongfully obtaining European funds (2 offenses) and abuse of office that resulted in obtaining unfair advantages (2 offenses) accounts for 127,547,366.34 lei and comprises:
- the amount of 32,203,658.27 lei (the equivalent of EUR 6,930,138) representing the damage established in the case of the offense of using or presenting in bad faith documents or false, inaccurate or incomplete statements if the act has the effect of wrongfully obtaining European funds, related to the project of DJ 506 (county road) rehabilitation
- the amount of 63,999,908.88 lei (the equivalent of EUR 13,772,603 ) representing the damage established in the case of the offense of using or presenting in bad faith documents or false, inaccurate or incomplete statements if the act has the effect of wrongfully obtaining European funds related to the project of DJ 701 rehabilitation
- the amount of 5.742.872,19 lei representing the damage established in the abuse of office case related to awarding the works contract in the case of DJ 506
- the amount of 25,600,927 lei representing the damage established in the case of the abuse of office related to awarding the works contract for DJ 701.
Until now, neither the management authority (the Ministry of Regional Development and European Funds) has become a civil claimant with respect to the amounts that would have been illegally obtained from European funds of over EUR 20 million, nor has the Teleorman County Council regarding the damage that would have allegedly been caused by the abuse of office (over RON 31 million).
Other seizures decided
NEDA FLOREA – representative of SC Tel Drum SA
preventive seizure and attachment of bank accounts up to RON 31,343,799.19 on all movable and immovable property, on the amounts in the bank accounts, on the amounts owed in any way by third parties, including the amounts owed as dividends
BATAUS MUGUR – civil servant at the Teleorman County Council at the time of the acts
preventive seizure up to RON 127,547,366.34 on all movable and immovable property, on the shares and shareholdings in private legal entities, the amounts existing in the bank accounts, the amounts owed by third parties
PIPEREA VICTOR – civil servant in the Teleorman County Council
preventive seizure and attachment of bank accounts up to RON 63,999,908.88 on all movable and immovable property, shares and shareholdings, on the amounts existing in bank accounts, the amounts owed in any form by third parties
PREDESCU MARIN – official in the Teleorman County Council
preventive seizure and attachment of bank accounts up to RON 32,203,658.27, on all movable and immovable property, shares and shareholdings, on the amounts existing in the bank accounts, the amounts owed in any forms by third parties.
Other eight people have been charged in the Tel Drum case, but prosecutors could also include legal entities as suspects, including the company that issued the bearer shares owned by the PSD president, according to some Rise Project disclosures.
The investigation has been launched following a complaint by OLAF, sent on September 30, 2016, regarding the suspicion of several crimes committed, including the illegal obtaining of European funds based on false documents, for county road rehabilitation works.
The organized criminal group was established in 2001 and is “also acting now,” says DNA, and “includes public administration officials and business people”.
The main objective of this group, the anticorruption prosecutors say, was “the privatization of Tel Drum SA and the transfer of this legal entity from the property of the Teleorman County Council to the sphere of influence and control of the suspect Liviu Nicolae Dragnea, through interposed persons.”