Following the justice referendum votes, the high court has sentenced Liviu Dragnea, the leader of the Social Democrat Party (PSD), to a total of three years and six months in jail for the case related to fictitious hirings at the Teleorman Child Protection Service.
This follows as PSD lost the elections for the European Parliament which took place yesterday (May 26th, 2019), where it they received one of the lowest scores in the party’s history.
The Teleorman Scandal
In 2018, Liviu Dragnea, was already sentenced to prison for abuse of office, however, at the time, the court’s decision was not final.
This was the result of two fictitious hirings during the time that he was president of the Teleroman County Council during 2009 and 2010. Investigates by the anti-corruption body (DNA – Direcția Națională Anticorupție) .
In short, the anticorruption prosecutors, claimed that Dragnea hired two PSD members and kept them in office at the Teleorman Social and Child Protection Service, while having knowledge that the two individuals had never showed up at work.
Initially, prosecutors were seeking 7 years and 6 months jail-time for Liviu Dragnea for damages amounting to around 100,000 Lei (approx €21,000), which represents the salaries which were paid to the two employees by the state.
There were also seven other employees sentenced to similar prison terms, but were placed on parole. Bombonica Prodana, who is Liviu Dragnea’s ex-wife, also used to work for the same agency, was acquitted after she agreed to pay the damages.
What happened today?
The High Cour of Cassation and Justice upheld the sentence from the 2018 Teleorman case. The sentence was delivered by a panel of 5 judges, with 4 in fabour and 1 against.
Liviu Dragnea turned himself in today, avoiding the need for police intervention. He arrived at the Rahova Penitentiary Bucharest at around 5:20pm.