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What the newspapers say: April 22, 2011

de A.C.
Vineri, 22 aprilie 2011, 8:20 English | Press Review

All newspapers read about the arrival of Romanian fugitive Nicolae Popa, the man that caused the arrest of media mogul Sorin Ovidiu Vantu in September last year. Newspapers wonder whether Nicolae Popa will release the information he holds against Vantu and who is going to pay for his repatriation. Another hot topic today, is the release of media mogul Vantu in the case involving news television Realitatea TV manager Sebastian Ghita, who accused Vantu of blackmail and threats against his life. Elsewhere in the news, Hungary is ready to link Romania to the European highway but Romanians are just starting. Romanian frigate sets sail towards the Mediterranean to block naval traffic against Libya. 

The hottest topics in today’s press involve businessman and media mogul Sorin Ovidiu Vantu. Evenimentul Zilei reads about the decision of the magistrates to release Sorin Ovdiu Vantu from temporary arrest following the complaints made by news television Realitatea TV manager Sebastian Ghita against the businessman, who claims he was threatened and blackmailed by Vantu. 

However, the decision is not final and was already appealed by prosecutors. Debates in the trial in which prosecutors urged the arrest of the Realitatea Media trust owner Sorin Ovidiu Vantu lasted for five hours. 

Yesterday, most newspapers released audio recordings of conversations between Ghita and Vantu which were brought as evidence by Ghita to support his accusations. The transcripts of the tapes reveals that Vantu threatened to murder Ghita unless he complied with his requests. 

Sebastian Ghita declared for Romania libera that he has an obligation to defend against the mob system and that it is not his duty to comment on the judicial system in Romania. However, Ghita said that he hopes that justice will be made in the end. 
The second hot topic in today’s newspapers is the repatriation of fugitive Nicolae Popa, who has been the cause of Vantu’s arrest last year, accused of helping Popa escape his 15 years sentence in Romania. 

Before leaving for Romania, Popa declared for the journalists present that he will defend his innocence. Gandul reads that Popa is brought in Bucharest with a private jet for which the Romanian state would pay 100,000 euro. 

The newspaper reads that prosecutors hope Popa will be tempted to negotiate his prison time by revealing information about the involvement of businessman Vantu in the FNI scandal which brought hundreds of Romanians to lose their life savings. 
Prosecutors count on the fact that Popa could incriminate Vantu considering that in these years, Vantu has been paying Popa 200,000 euro/year. 

Romania libera puts forward some reasons which might determine Popa to betray Vantu, because Popa might represent the fatal blow against the businessman. The newspaper reads that Popa considers Vantu responsible for his expatriation because the businessman failed to send him six million euro to bribe Indonesian authorities, as phone taps revealed last year. 
What is more, the files in which Vantu was declared innocent for lack of evidence will be re-opened. 

The newspaper reads that if betrayed by Popa, Vantu might be sentenced to 10 to 20 years of prison. Moreover, the state can also hope to recover some of the money it lost with the FNI scandal – about 100 million euro paid as damages for a part of the investors in the business orchestrated by Vantu. 

In the FNI case, the total prejudices exceeded 3.300 billion old lei and is the file in which Popa was sentenced to 15 years of prison together with Ioana Maria Vlas who received 8 years of prison. 

Elsewhere in the news, Gandul ready Hungary is ready to link Romania to the European highway but that the Romanian party is just starting works. Romania’s Transports ministry announced earlier this week the winners of the tender organized for the highway projection and construction between Nadlac, the Western border and Sibiu, central Romania. 

Costs for 183 km of highway amount to 1 billion euro, without VAT.The European highway starts in Germany at Nuremberg, continues on Prague, Vienna, Bratislava and Hungary. In Romania it should continue through the Western border at Nadlac, Arad, Deva, Orastie, Sibiu, Bucharest, Fetesti and Constanta, the Eastern side of the country. 

Romania libera reads that today, the Romanian frigate Regele Ferdinand will set sail towards the Mediterranean Sea where its mission will be to block naval traffic against Libya. The mission will proceed under NATO standards. 
There are 205 military men and two officers on the frigate. Total costs for the Romanian state amount to 4.5million euro. 

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