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New Romanian legislative bill would leave suspects know everything about inquiries against them

de V.O.     HotNews.ro
Marţi, 26 februarie 2008, 20:49 English | Top News

The Romanian House of Deputies adopted on Tuesday a legislative initiative that allows the presence of a suspect's lawyer at any act of criminal inquiry related to that suspect. Moreover, the bill says that the absence of the lawyer may impede the criminal investigation unless that lawyer is informed about any further move during the inquiry. The initiative is signed by six Social Democratic deputies including ex-prime minister Adrian Nastase, who himself has been the subject of graft inquiries.

The initiative may lead to situations where a prosecutor that has received a judge's approval to eavesdrop on a suspect would not be able to do so unless the lawyer of the suspect assists the operation.

Ex-PM Adrian Nastase may himself benefit from the new rule as his lawyers would be able to learn in due time what a witness states against their client and to warn Nastase about it.

And lawyers representing drug trafficking suspects may be present at the hearings of protected witnesses and may know what the latter say about their clients.

The bill has been rejected by Senators but was approved by deputies with a large majority - including representatives of the governing Liberal Party. The only parties against the change were those of the opposition Democratic-Liberals (PDL) and the Greater Romania Party.

The government said it did not support the change.




















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