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Moldova ex-PM Vlad Filat fills complaint to the European Court for Human Rights

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On August 10th, the law bureau defending Moldova’s ex-Prime-Minister, Vlad Filat, announced about filling a complaint with the European Court for Human Rights (ECtHR). Filat argues that, during the trial, several rights provided by the European Convention for Human Rights.

The former PM finds that the 3rd article of the 1st protocol to the 13th article of the Convention was violated in his case, because he was deprived of his Parliamentary immunity and seat with violations of Moldova’s internal laws.

According to him, the provisions of the 6th article on the right to fair trial were also violated: the trial hearings were not public, a big majority of requests to call on additional witnesses and expertise were rejected, the judges were not impartial, some files from the case were intentionally given to the press, he was always overwhelmingly guarded by police:

“I was the victim of a trial conducted in obscure, clandestine conditions, having limited the right to communicate with the mass-media… No element was presented to prove that the publicity of my trial would affect the interest of the justice”, mentions the request to the ECtHR.

Filat also invokes that 18th articles of the ECHR was violated, since the preventive arrest continued despite no real proof of any risk on justice out of detention conditions. Filat complains that his prolonged preventive arrest had the goal of eliminating him from the public and political sphere.

His lawyer, Igor Popa, believes that the ECtHR would oblige the national justice institutions to reexamine the case of Vlad Filat and reestablish his rights.

In 2015, Filat complained to the ECtHR about the detention conditions in the 13th Penitentiary (Chișinău) and his arrest.

Former Liberal-Democrat Prime-Minister, Vlad Filat, was arrested on October 15th 2015 for allegations of passive corruption and traffic influence towards the then businessman and now mayor of Orhei, Ilan Shor. On June 27th 2016, he was condemned to nine years of closed imprisonment by the Court Buiucani of Chişinău, decision reinforced by the Appeal Court of Chişinău on November 11th 2016. Moldova’s Supreme Court rejected Filat’s lawyers’ requests to reexamine the case.

Currently studying International Relations at the University of Pécs, Hungary. Study focus: Transnistrian conflict settlement, Moldovan statehood, Moldovan democracy. Inquiries at [email protected]

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Justice

Mihai Poalelungi was appointed the judge of the Constitutional Court

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Mihai Poalelungi, the only registered candidate for the position, was appointed as the judge of the Constitutional Court of the Republic of Moldova. His candidacy has been approved by the Superior Council of Magistrates.

The position of the judge at the Constitutional Court became vacant after Tudor Panţîru resigned as president and judge in January due to personal reasons.

The Constitutional Court has six judges that are appointed by the Parliament, the Government, and the Superior Council of Magistracy. They may hold office for two terms.

The former head of Moldova’s Supreme Court, Mihai Poalelungi has previously told Ziarul de Garda that he wants to “make better constitutional justice in Moldova”:

 “There is a close link between the subject of my practical work in Strasbourg and the area of constitutional law, and I believe that I will positively contribute to the achievement of a better constitutional justice in Moldova under my appointment to this position”, the magistrate said.

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Economy

US Ambassador: Moldova’s “progress disappointed” in 2017, some laws are “a step back”

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The United States Ambassador to Moldova, James D. Pettit, declared in a TV8 interview that Moldova’s “progress” was disappointing in 2017. According to Pettit, some laws promoted by the Moldovan authorities constituted “a step back for the country”.

“Last years, the international development partners were slightly disappointed with the lack of progress. Recently, (I) have seen different draft laws that were effectively a step back”, declared His Excellency. As dubious and problematic, Pettit mentioned the switch to the new electoral system and the draft law on the “decriminalizing of the economic crimes”, pushed by the Economy Ministry. At the same time, he pointed out that corruption is the problem number one and that Moldova needs structural reforms, not only technical ones.

Ambassador Pettit is not impressed by the 4% economic growth either:

We are happy to have seen economic growth, but I would say that 4% for such a small country like Moldova is a relatively modest achievement”, added the American Ambassador.

Despite the critique brought by the US and EU Ambassadors, the Prime-Minister, Pavel Filip, did not renounce from the draft law on “decriminalizing economic crimes”, claiming that the idea came out of the “discussions with business”.

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Justice

Moldovan prosecutors conducted over 4300 special surveillance operations in 2017

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The General Prosecution’s Office of Moldova published a short summary of the report on the “special investigation activities” conducted in 2017 by prosecutors.

Within 57313 penal cases, the prosecutors sent 4367 requests authorizing special investigation measures by courts. 50 requests were rejected.

Most frequent “special measures” were:

  • intercepting and recording communication and images- 3142 cases;
  • collecting information from operators of electronic communication services- 803 cases;
  • localizing with technical means such as GPS- 287;
  • researching the domicile and/or placing audio and video recording devices within the domicile buildings- 63;
  • monitoring or control of financial transactions- 12;
  • supervising the domicile through technical means- 10.

In 581 cases, special surveillance actions were authorized directly by the prosecutors:

  • identifying the client, the owner or the user of the communication services- 264 cases;
  • visual surveillance- 151;
  • control of the extorted money or goods transfers- 99;
  • control acquisition- 31;
  • control delivery- 2.

According to the General Prosecutor, the special investigation measures were conducted in investigating “serious, very serious and exceptionally serious crimes”.

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