Former Romanian mayor testifies on illegal party financing

Former Piatra Neamt mayor Gheorghe Stefan testified at the Bucharest Court on Friday about how the former Liberal Democratic Party (PDL) received illegal financing before the presidential elections in November 2009.

Gheorghe Stefan was heard as a witness in a case in which former PDL leader Vasile Blaga is being tried for influence peddling and the party’s illegal financing. Blaga was the party’s secretary general then.

The former mayor said that Horia Hahaianu was appointed director of the state-owned electricity carrier Transelectrica in 2009. In exchange for that, Hahaianu financed the party, reports

The former mayor met with Hahaianu and two other men at a hotel where they discussed about how the money had to be given. Stefan later accompanied one of the men to the party’s headquarters where he brought the bribe. He paid it in several installments, amounting to EUR 200,000.

“The money was not given to Blaga directly, but to a secretary, it was money to finance the party,” said Gheorghe Stefan in court.

In 2010, Blaga received another EUR 500,000 as bribe from the same man, according to Stefan. The money was given for protection because Blaga had a lot of power in the party at that time, the former mayor explained.

Former Piatra-Neamt mayor gets eight-year prison sentence

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