Professional discussion on the topic „The Romanian Experience: Anti-corruption Institutions and Measures“ brought together magistrates, NGOs and journalists in the Ceremonial Hall of the Palace of Justice on 16th of Match. The forum was opened by the President of Bulgaria’s Supreme Court of Cassation, Lozan Panov. The special guest, Laura Kovesi, the Chief Prosecutor of Romania’s National Anti-Corruption Directorate, spoke about the Romanian experience in fighting corruption and said that in the past 10 years, the number of convictions for corruption has increased almost 4 times.
On 15th of March, Kovesi met with Bulgaria’s President Roumen Radev. At the meeting, she presented the structure, control mechanisms and the successful results of the Anti-corruption Directorate in Romania.
According to Kovesi, three things are needed to achieve results in the fight against corruption – independence of the prosecutors, adequate legislation and effectiveness of the investigations. These are the prerequisites for citizens to have confidence in the work of the anti-corruption directorate. The greater confidence stimulates larger number of reported real signals for corruption, added Kovesi.
Kovesi said that the criterion for the efficiency of a structure such as the prosecution was not the number of indictments, but the number of final court decisions. For the past 10 years, the convictions for corruption in Romania increased from 155 to 870. As a result of these cases, only for the last year, 660 m euros went into the budget of Romania – from confiscated property of the defendants.
In turn, the host of the meeting Lozan Panov said that in terms of corruption at the high levels of power in Bulgaria, the court cases almost always ended with acquittals and according to him this could be called “judicial lenience”.