Romania’s former finance minister Sebastian Vlădescu, Ionuț Costea, former head of state owned bank Eximbank, and Cristian Boureanu, former MP and vice president of the National Liberal Party (PNL), together with several other defendants, were sent to court by the prosecutors of the National Anticorruption Directorate (DNA), all three being charged with various offenses of bribe taking and influence peddling in a case involving a foreign company paying "commissions" in amount of EUR 20 million in exchange for railway rehabilitation contracts, Hotnews.ro reported.
On March 15, the DNA indicted Josef Hornegger, the representative of the consortium of Austrian companies Swietelsky - Wiebe - Takenaka accused of bribing former finance minister Sebastian Vladescu, in a case related to the Bucharest - Constanta railway rehabilitation.
Josef Hornegger admitted to bribing the Romanian officials and signed a plea agreement, according to the DNA release.
The foreign firm involved in the case is subject to investigations carried by prosecutors in its country, DNA press release reads.
Starting 2005, the Austrian consortium agreed to pay a 3.5% “commission” (payments hidden under the form of consultancy contracts) of the money received from the Romanian state for the contracts to Romanian officials, prosecutors claim.
In 2019, amid the financial crisis, the “commission” was hiked to 10%.
In the same period, the Romanian state had to borrow money from the International Monetary Fund, European Commission and World Bank to be able to cover its expenses and repay creditors.
The former head of Romania’s tax collection agency (ANAF), Sorin Blejnar, former deputy director Viorel Comăniţă and...