Romania’s prisons “persistently” poor conditions the focus of Council of Europe meeting

Between 9-11 March, the representatives of the 47 member states of the Council of Europe met to examine the implementation of judgments of the European Court of Human Rights, in accordance with the supervisory role of the Committee of Ministers under Article 46 of the European Convention on Human Rights. On the agenda was Romania and…

Romania’s justice system under further scrutiny as senior judge criticises ministerial decision to abolish department investigating judicial system crimes

In Romania, a battle is under way regarding the essential watchdog organisation that investigates crimes within the justice system. Known as the Special Section for Investigating Crimes in the Judicial System (SIJCO), the organisation is seen by many as an essential defence of the independence of the justice system during an era when Prosecutors have…

Băneasa case judge charged with abuse of office and Wrongfully Convicting Defendant #Romania

Judge Corneliu-Bogdan Ion-Tudoran, who ruled in Romania’s high profileBăneasareal estate development case,has been charged with wrongly convicting a defendant and for abuse of office for his conduct in the case. The Băneasa development involved businessman Gabriel Popoviciu and concerned 221 hectares which was owned by the University of Agronomic Sciences and Veterinary Medicine (USAMV), through…

Corruption Index CPI 2020 Published by TI

Transparency International (TI) has published their annual Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI). This index ranks countries based on their exposure to corruption in the public sector. Scores range from 0 (most corrupt) to 100 (least corrupt). The CPI 2020 found that Hungary scored 44 in 2020 and ranked 69th overall – placing the country alongside Bulgaria…

Senior Romanian prosecutors skipped professional exams and gained status granted by Ministerial decision

We are perhaps one step closer to understanding the conundrum in Romania that the country’s two biggest prosecution offices, the National Anticorruption Directorate (DNA) and the Section for the Investigation of Justice Criminal Offences (SIJJ), both bring a record number of cases, yet those same cases either fail or end with dubious results.   It…

Deaths in jail bring Romanian prison conditions back into the spotlight

Three inmates lost their lives and two were seriously injured after a fire at the Satu Mare prison in north-western Romania. The fire at Satu Mare prison began when detainees burned their mattresses to protest against the restrictions imposed by the prison authorities amid the Covid-19 outbreak. The deaths and injuries brought renewed attention to…

Inside Romania’s prisons: Masked intervention groups, overcrowding and violence

Romania’s prison conditions are of great concern to the Council of Europe’s Committee for the Prevention of Torture and Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (CPT), as detailed by their report.  The conditions discovered by the CPT team fall far below expected European standards for the treatment of prisoners and include attacks by masked intervention…

Romanian Electoral Reform Sparks Criticism

Marcel Ciolacu, President of the European Social Democratic Party, has complained about changes to the Romanian electoral legislation. The letter was sent to the President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, as well as to the President of the European Parliament,Davin Maria Sassoli; the President of the Venice Commission, GianniBuquicchio; to the Secretary General of the European Council,…

Romanian Revolution 30 Years On

This month marks the 30th anniversary of the Revolution in Romania, an event that put an end to the communist dictatorship of Nicolae Ceausescu. The European Parliament has now recognised its significance in Europe’s common history. During a debate in Strasbourg, MEPs shared their views on the topic, ahead of the vote on a resolution…