Prosecutors challenge acquittal of ex-prime minister Filat

The Anticorruption Prosecutor’s Office challenged the sentence passed by the Buiucani Court of Chisinau City on May 7, by which former Prime Minister Vlad Filat was acquitted. The state prosecution requested the Chisinau Court of Appeals to annul the decision of the court of first instance and find the former prime minister guilty of money laundering, IPN reports.

In their appeal, the prosecutors demand that the former prime minister be sentenced to seven years in prison and have about 13 million lei, the equivalent value of the money that was the object of money laundering, confiscated. According to them, this action is vital for law enforcement and to demonstrate that no one is above the law, regardless of the social position or political influence.

The Anticorruption Prosecutor’s Office noted significant discrepancies between the court’s conclusions and its substantiation. Although the sentence of acquittal of Vladimir Filat was motivated by the absence of elements of a crime, the court issued contradictory conclusions in various sections of its decision.

According to the APO, the trial court failed to provide a logical justification for these divergent conclusions. Thus, in the opinion of state prosecutors, a careful review of the court’s decision and correction of obvious errors in the interpretation and application of the law are necessary. At the same time, the prosecutors argue that the court during the examination of the criminal case manifestly acted to the detriment of the position of the state prosecutor, violated the rights of the prosecution to administer the evidence it considers relevant to the charges, repeatedly rejected the state prosecutor’s requests and thus refused to question witnesses for the prosecution.

The criminal case was initiated in August 2015 by the National Anticorruption Center. In 2013, Vladimir Filat, while holding the position of chairman of the Liberal Democratic Party of Moldova (PLDM), being a public figure, knowing that through Ion Rusu, with whom he was in an affinity relationship, he owns financial means obtained illegally from Banca de Economii, in the total amount of 12 847 902 lei, converted and transferred the money through companies managed by Ion Rusu to the account of the nonresident company Greenberg Quinlan Rosner Research LTD, for the payment of electoral consultancy services during the 2013 campaign, provided for the benefit of the PLDM.

The trial lasted for more than five years and the defendant denied any wrongdoing. On May 7, Vlad Filat was acquitted of money laundering, the Court of Chisinau City noting that the deed didn’t contain elements of an offence.

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