The Baneasa Mall. The largest investment in Bucharest made by the companies of the businessman Puiu Popoviciu on 221 hectares owned by the University of Agronomic Sciences and Veterinary Medicine (USAMV), through a joint venture, after which the people of Bucharest received a huge oasis of shopping and leisure , where the most important companies in the world were brought.
Over 20,000 workplaces. Taxes and fees of over EUR 1,15 BILLION collected by the state in the period 2005 – Dec. 2019, which have exceeded several times the circulation value of the land, values established with certainty by the expert reports of some international firms.
The 221-hectare land did not go anywhere, it was and still belongs to the University, which is State Owned, which received millions of euros from the venture, becoming one of the most modern higher education institutions in Romania. The joint venture was later transformed into a commercial company – Baneasa Investment in which USAMV owns 49.882%, which is a state university and holds title to the respective lands. On 4 hectares out of the 221, the modern US Embassy was built, being obvious that Romania’s strategic ally would not have allowed to raise its strategic bunkers, if there were any problem of legality.
But no! How to allow a Romanian businessman to achieve such a performance?!? Romania must not have leaders in any field. Everything that is top Romanian must be destroyed and put in prison.
The NAD is politically thrown down the wire. Which accuses that it is an abuse of office, with great damage, although a few years before the General Prosecutor’s Office had investigated the case and had dismissed it. More specifically, the prosecutor’s office gave the order not to start the criminal prosecution on 14.02.2008 of Puiu Popoviciu and the rector Ioan Alecu, at the criminal complaint made by the landowner Gigi Becali, but in the summer of the same year NAD reopened the case on the grounds that the damage exceeds 1 million euros and is within its competence . On top of that, the report of finding the damage was made by NAD specialists only in 2010, that is, two years after they arrogated the file, but these are details that no longer matter. But now it was an order from above … we are in 2009. Detentions, searches, seizures, the entire show. Amateur accusations. Businessman Puiu Popoviciu is foully and humiliatingly accused of give bribe a calendar and a bottle of whiskey to an Interior Ministry intelligence officer.
Agronomy professors are gathered in a room where they are told that the prosecutor Marin came to the University and that they are threatened that they will be arrested by bus and taken to NAD if they do not vote in the Senate that the University constitutes itself as a civil party as requested in writing by NAD. The university is ultramodern, it has made unprecedented profits from the venture, but the professors vote for fear of being arrested because they register in the NAD file as a civil party, without being able to establish the amount of damage, because they cannot calculate it since it does not exist. Subsequently, a 5-member USAMV commission ruled that there was no prejudice. But it does not matter anymore. NAD prosecutors ruled in their own right in 2010 that there was damage, and that it consisted of the market value of the 221 hectares, although NAD specialists (employees of the prosecutor’s office) are not independent, have no accreditation from ANEVAR or the Technical Expert Body. What damage? Because the land went nowhere. It belonged to the State University and is still, as it is written in the title deed. In addition, the land ownership documents were verified by armies of lawyers for clients who developed buildings (IKEA and other retailers), banks that granted construction loans, including the US State Department, but the case prosecutor DNA Nicolae Marin saw himself as smarter than everyone.
NAD prosecutors have accused the rector Ioan Alecu of abuse of office, even though the professor is not a civil servant!!! They seized, blocked the bank financing, so that the Mall Baneasa shopping complex – a commercial masterpiece – finished and put into use, was surrounded by a sea of fallow land, blocks of flats and villas that were not completed, and which were part of the investment plan. A residential neighborhood was blocked by the DNA prosecutor, Nicolae Marin, at the criminal complaint of a landowner, upset that he could not make the first the venture with the University.
The authors of the commercial masterpiece accomplished, mind you, with private money, are tarnished in the press by a prosecutor’s office that issued press releases in which they gave clear verdicts of guilt, before any trial. The “Popoviciu Lot” is being held illegally. Demonized in the public square. Presented as already guilty, obtaining a real popular anger.
Faced with the anger of public opinion, instigated by NAD, the President of Romania Traian Basescu intervened in the press: “Let’s understand each other on the following: where is Popoviciu’s crime that he made an investment of several billion in Bucharest? Is it a crime? It seems that this is the public approach and it is very wrong. The problem, if it exists, is in the area of legality of land transfer, but from here to blaming an investment of such size, I consider it a mistake.”
So, it’s not a crime, Basescu said, but there would be “problems” with the property title, the former president mentioned it! Exactly this statement makes you believe, knowing the character, that Basescu was no stranger to the case at all, because he had no way of knowing this judicial detail with the “problem” of the title deed, which had not been put on the cover in public and not even the defendants in the case did knew it at the time of the statement.
This is all the more so as Basescu’s eldest daughter, Ioana, had bought a penthouse in one of the blocks of flats built by Baneasa Investment for half a million euros (in documents) and had opened her notary office in a building on the 221 hectares, at a small distance from the US Embassy. Facts out which a big deal was made in the press. Probably this is how Basescu understood to justify where his daughter got so much money from, according to his style of looking at how miserable all those about whom information appeared in the press that have allegedly helped him in one way or another. On the principle: if it reached the cellar in my time, who could believe that I had any connection?!
This is why I believe that the businessman Puiu Popoviciu was executed with Basescu’s knowledge by the RIS – NAD Binome, which since April 2009 had signed through Kovesi – Maior – Coldea the secret RIS – POHCCJ collaboration protocol, protocol declared illegal by the Constitutional Court years later. The political-judicial games were bigger than that, as in the file was charged also the head of the then secret service of the Interior – Cornel Serban, forced to resign, moment after which DIPI, the only secret service that in 2009 was not under the control of the mobster System created by Basescu, was packed with bosses appointed with the endorsement of General Florian Coldea, the operative chief of RIS, becoming practically a service controlled by RIS. Ironically, Cornel Serban had signed the mission order to investigate Mircea Basescu (the president’s brother) in the arms scandal in Valcea.
We return to the performance of NAD prosecutors. NAD case prosecutor Nicolae Marin is a problem magistrate, full of acquittals. Who acted brutally, generating Romania’s conviction at the ECHR for the investigation in the Baneasa case. 7 years later – what’s the use? – The ECHR in Strasbourg found by Decision of March 1, 2016 (File 52942/09) that the arrest warrant of March 23, 2009 issued by prosecutor Nicolae Marin on behalf of Puiu Popoviciu did not contain any of the reasons provided by law – art. 183 para. (2) the old CPC – to justify the measure. “The Court concludes that, by failing to state the reasons on which it was based, the prosecutor’s mandate violated the applicable internal criminal procedural provisions.”
The European court ruled that the businessman was illegally deprived of his liberty between the time he was brought to the NAD headquarters and the time the restraining order was issued. The ECHR found that Puiu Popoviciu was escorted to the NAD headquarters on March 24, 2009, around 15:00, being held in police custody until 23:30, without the deprivation of liberty in the 8 and a half hours to have a legal basis: “The applicant was not deprived of liberty in accordance with a procedure prescribed by national legislation, which makes imprisonment from 15:00 to 23:30, on March 24, 2009, incompatible with the requirements of Article 5.1 of the Convention”.
Did prosecutor Nicolae Marin suffer anything because he generated Romania’s conviction at the ECHR? Nothing. He did his job to the end, because he was part of the System created in 2009. The tools of the repressive system are protected. Thanks to the same secret protocols between the Romanian Intelligence Service and the General Prosecutor’s Office, declared illegal by the Constitutional Court. In what country are businessmen who have made remarkable investments, who have brought huge profits to the state budget, arrested and sentenced to prison?
The trial followed. In 2012, prosecutor Nicolae Marin issued the Indictment in the file 206 / P / 2006 of 17.12.2012. The case of Baneasa Mall (9577/2/2012) was assigned to Judge Bogdan Corneliu Ion Tudoran, from the Criminal Section I of the Bucharest Court of Appeal, an individual who has oscillated in his career between politics and the judiciary, being in the past Secretary of State for Defense. With a dubious past. With a son with big legal problems.
On 23.06.2016, Judge Bogdan Corneliu Ion Tudoran, without taking into account the fugazies in the case, sentenced the entire Popoviciu group to extremely harsh punishments – 9 years in prison for Puiu Popoviciu so on and so forth.
But the judge does something that has nothing to do with justice. Although the criminal offense of abuse is one of damage, he convicted the accused of abuse without establishing the damage!!! He gave the convictions and separated the criminal case from the civil one, forming a new file (4445/2/2016) in which to subsequently decide the issue of damage from the file 9577/2/2012. A unique judicial aberration in the annals of justice. Do you realize? If it had been later established that there was no prejudice, what would have been the fate of convictions? Do you realize the risk? But Tudoran knew what he was doing, because he allocated to himself the case with the civil side, with his own power. He refused to abstain and his recusal failed.
The system worked in secret, because without waiting for the settlement of the civil case, the High Court rejected the appeal of the defendants in the Baneasa case, reducing the sentence applied to Popoviciu to 7 years in prison. That is why the businessman, who was in London, surrendered to the British authorities and asked not to be extradited on the grounds that he had been abusively convicted by a corrupt political-judicial system. The extradition case is currently pending before the British courts.
In Bucharest, miracles follow. In a pile-up. Judge Tudoran is requesting retirement. There are reports that he is crushed with criminal complaints from various victims, which are analyzed at the SIJCO, as a result of connections with the underworld.
On December 28, 2018, he issues sentence no. 267 / F (4445/2/2016), in which he finds the existence of a prejudice and orders that all the land be brought to its initial state!!! You mean to demolish the whole Baneasa Mall??? Including evacuating the US Embassy? How could such a decision be applied?
On September 19, 2019, he is retired by the Decree of the President of Romania no. 704 published in the Official Gazette no. 764 of September 20, 2019. But the judge disappeared in retirement, without motivating the sentence on the civil side. Which the judges of the High Court are waiting to be sent on appeal in a motivated form. Impossible, the judge cannot be found. The clerks from the Bucharest Court of Appeal called him insistently. In the press it is found that Judge Tudoran is hospitalized in various hospitals for nervous diseases. He allegedly has psychiatric problems. Ill for real or made-up to evade criminal responsibility, a large part of the press approaches the case.
Lumea Justitiei reveals for the first time that on November 4, 2019, while Judge Bogdan Corneliu Ion Tudoran was hospitalized in psychiatry, his son appeared at the clerk office of the Bucharest Court of Appeal and handed over on a memory stick, in electronic format, the motivation of the civil sentence from December 28, 2018. The motivation in the signed form could no longer be accepted, because Tudoran was no longer a judge, he had been officially retired. He no longer had the right to sign.
The Board of Management of the Bucharest Court of Appeal officially found, in writing, “the impossibility of drafting decision no. 267 / F of 28.12.2018 ”, so that on June 12, 2020, the High Court decided: “It cancels the appealed criminal sentence and sends the case for retrial to the same court, respectively to the Bucharest Court of Appeal”. Partly, justice was done!
The huge problem remains: the status of Judge Tudoran. Criminally investigated by SIJCO. Whom the case prosecutor Mihaela Iorga Moraru cannot bring to the hearings on the grounds that he has been hospitalized for more than a year … is that so? Incendiary footage appears in the press. Tudoran had a secret visit at the SIJCO in August 2019. He was photographed and filmed. Himself and his son. It is heard that he was visiting Nicolae Marin, the current head of the Section for the Investigation of Criminal Offences in Justice, to drink coffee.
You simply get a headache just thinking about it! Chief Prosecutor Nicolae Marin is the author of the indictment. Tudoran who confirmed it by sentence. Dozens of pages were copied verbatim. Copy-paste!
They can both be held liable for what they did, in connection with the biggest investment in the Capital!
SIJCO case prosecutor Mihaela Iorga Moraru, Nicolae Marin’s colleague with whom they both left the NAD with a scandal at the end of the Kovesi era. It`s a small world!
Is Tudoran really sick? When did his illness start? How could he be healthy in his head at the time of the criminal trial, and unable to motivate when he burned it on the civil side? Do we somehow witness an arrangement in which the prosecutor and the judge take each other out?
How did an individual who generated Romania’s conviction at the ECHR become head of the SIJCO? An individual about whose performance, ECHR judges ruled: “The fight against corruption cannot justify resorting to arbitrariness when people’s deprivation of liberty is at stake”. This individual never got his professional degree as a high court prosecutor through competition, but as a result of a simple interview. A trick. It is heard that because of him at the SIJCO the criminal files of the defendant Laura Kovesi are kept on hold, which are being investigated by the prosecutor Adina Florea and which Marin would not allegedly want to confirm.
Let’s not forget that Nicolae Marin was sent as head of NAD Ploiesti between 2018 and 2019, after the scandal broke out with the rogue prosecutors from this “elite” structure, who were harassing people on the conveyor belt, threatening, blackmailing and torturing … none of the torturers have been arrested yet … although many criminal cases have been opened against them.
At SIJCO all criminal cases (dozens in number) made against Laura Kovesi, Augustin Lazar and former RIS leaders who signed in 2009 and 2016 the illegal RIS – POHCCJ – HCCJ collaboration protocols, are blocked. Well, Nicolae Marin worked on abusive protocols! How did someone like him get to manage such sensitive files of individuals who have ruined Romania’s elites, knowing that NAD has statistically collected over 1000 acquittals in resounding cases with politicians, businessmen, magistrates and owners of press trusts?
The dismissal by the High Court of Judge Tudoran’s sentence from psychiatry is the ultimate proof of the defiant way in which people who have accomplished something remarkable in this country are judged.
Currently, in the Baneasa case, many people are in prison as a result of Tudoran’s sentence. The only one who is not in prison is Popoviciu because he surrendered to the British authorities, accusing that he is a victim in his country. But he is confined at an established home, with a monitoring bracelet on his foot. Tudoran’s criminal sentence must be overturned by way of review. People must be released immediately until it is determined whether Tudoran was also mentally ill when he gave the sentences.Everyone has the right to a fair trial, which implies the right to a judge with a sound mind! Because in the same case, as a judge you cannot be OK on the criminal side and hospitalized in psychiatry on the civil side!