Disgraced former Romanian Prime Minister Adrian Nastase is free. After a Bucharest court upheld his parole recommendation earlier today, the former Prime Minister was released from the Jilava prison at around 18:00. He gave his “best wishes” to the waiting crowds of reporters, but did not stop to talk. Nastase said he would speak to the press in the next few days.
Nastase appeared in Bucharest’s District 4 Court today (March 18 ) for a hearing on his early release. The Anti Corruption Directorate (DNA) challenged the move to free the former PM, but after deliberating for just over an hour, the court returned a verdict in Nastase’s favor at around 15:30. The judgmental was final and the court passed on official notification of the decision to the prison, allowing him to be released after being in the Jilava jail since June 2012.
According to the authorities, Nastase’s conduct in prison has been good. He has taken part in education and therapy programs, and got involved in training activities and positively influenced the other inmates, according to the report of the jail commission. He also constantly updated his blog.
After years of legal wrangling, former PM Adrain Nastase was given a definitive two year jail sentence by the Romanian Supreme Court back in June 2012. There was drama when police came to take him to prison, with Nastase being rushed to hospital after an unsuccessful suicide attempt. Following his recovery, he was sent to the Jilava prison to serve his sentence.
The former PM was found guilty of having financed his election campaigns with funds collected for the symposium ‘Quality Trophy’, organized by the State Inspectorate for Quality in Construction in 2004. Participation fees for the symposium in 2004, totaling EUR 1.6 million, went to four companies, controlled by two members of Nastase’s entourage.
Adrian Nastase, a former leader of the Social Democratic Party (PSD), served as PM when the PSD were in power between 2000 and 2004. The trial lasted over three years and involved 900 witnesses and 48 court hearings.