Things have taken a new turn in the case related to the Sky News journalistic investigation that allegedly showed gun dealers in Romania selling weapons illegally.
The Romanian Directorate for Organized Crime and Terrorism (DIICOT) conducted several searches in Bistrita Nasaud and Tirgu Mures on Wednesday, following the information published by Sky News. The man who worked as an intermediary between the British journalists and the alleged gun dealers has already been brought in for questioning, while the four other men who appear in the video are to be questioned as well later today.
“We’ve identified the masked persons, as well as other people they collaborated with. We’ve also identified the guns and found the car. We’ll drive it on site. What we’ve anticipated is now confirmed, namely that this is a set-up that I believe it was planned by the British journalists,” said DIICOT chief prosecutor Daniel Horodniceanu, reports local Mediafax.
The guns that appear in the video, about which the local authorities say that they are hunting weapons and not assault rifles, have also been brought to the DIICOT headquarters. The alleged gun dealers who appeared in the Sky News feature are in fact hunters and they have permits for those weapons, according to Romanian journalist Adelin Petrisor.
The man who acted like an intermediary between the British journalists and the alleged Romanian gun dealers said that the journalist who published the story knew that the people he was interviewing were not criminals. Moreover, he allegedly paid them EUR 2,000 to appear in the video, and even told them what to say and wear, reports local Digi24. The video was filmed somewhere in the Mures county.
Meanwhile, Stuart Ramsay, the British journalist who published the story, rejected the accusations. He claimed that he met the Romanian gun dealers because they seemed “trustworthy.” Moreover, he said that the dealers didn’t care that they were being filmed because they were not afraid of the authorities.
“Our contacts have led to a Romanian who was a gang family member. I had no reasons to believe that he wasn’t who he said he was. A former soldier who came with me as a guardian confirmed that the guns were military weapons,” the journalist said, cited by local Digi24.
The local authorities will continue the investigations in this case.
Irina Popescu, [email protected]