President Basescu asks former privatization minister’s prosecution

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President Traian Basescu asked on Friday the initiation of a criminal court action against former minister of the Privatization Authority and Administration of State Participations (APAPS) Ovidiu Tiberiu Musetescu, the Presidential Administration informs.

„Following the request of the Prosecutor’s Office with the High Court of Cassation and Justice, based on the provisions of Art. 109, paragraph (2) from Romania’s Constitution and of the provisions of Art. 12 and Art. 19 from the Law No. 115/1999 on the ministerial responsibility, republished, given the Constitutional Court’s decisions No. 665 of July 5, 2007, published by the Official Gazette, Part I, No. 547 of August 10, 2007 and No. 1133 of Nov. 27, 2007, published by the Official Gazette, Part I, No. 851 of Dec. 12, 2007, Romania’s President Traian Basescu sent on Friday, Sept. 11, 2009 to the Minister of Justice and Citizens Freedoms Catalin Marian Predoiu the request of initiation of a criminal court action against Mr. Ovidiu Tiberiu Musetescu, former minister of the Privatization Authority and Administration of State Participations”, says the release.

On June 29 Romania’s Chief Prosecutor Laura Codruta Kovesi asked President Traian Basescu the start of criminal investigation against Ovidiu Musetescu, former minister and president of APAPS in a case related to SC Alro SA Slat ina and SC Alprom SA privatizations.

„The Chief Prosecutor’s Office with the High Court of Cassation and Justice, notified by the National Anti-corruption Department, has asked Romania’s President the initiation of a criminal court action against Ovidiu Musetescu, former minister of the Privatization Authority and Administration of State Participations (APAPS) and member of the Government in the period 2001 through 2003 for the offenses of abuse in office, as stipulated by Art. 248 of the Penal Code reported to art. 2481 of the Penal Code and the establishment with real intent of a diminished value compared to the real commercial value of the assets of the economic operators in which the state is shareholder, committed in the case of privatization of SC Alro SA Slatina and SC Alprom SA, according to the case file No. 54/2005 of the Prosecutor’s Office with the High Court of Cassation and Justice – the National Anti¬corruption Department”, the Chief Prosecutor’s Office informed at that time.

According to the quoted source, the case refers to evidence pointing out that the under- evaluation of the state-held stakes in the two companies was possible due to the absence of a competition environment, by changing the privatization strategy, lack of transparency and grant of the blockage rights to a minority shareholder.

„Because on the date when the aforementioned law infringement took place and the prosecutors were notified about, Ovidiu Musetescu was member of the Government, Romania’s President was asked to give the assent to the start of criminal investigation”, the Chief Prosecutor’s Office also said.

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