A Bucharest Court is due to decide whether to approve parole for Miron Cozma, a former miners’ union leader involved in violent protests last decade, after a special penitentiary commission approved recommended the move on Wednesday. The commission’s approval is consultative.

It is the third time when the possibility of letting Cozma, who led the so-called “miners’ crusades” resulting in dozens of victims and the toppling of a government in the nineties, is considered. If approved, Cozma would leave prison six months earlier.

This comes after the High Court decided in December 2005 to combine the sentences for Cozma’s involvement in the two miners’ crusades, to which ex-President Ion Iliescu, a former Communist apparatchik, has also been linked.

The first sentence was set to seven years and 11 months - already paid - for the 1991 crusade to Bucharest, which resulted in the fall of the-then government. The second sentence of ten years is related to the Costesti miners’ crusade in February 1999.