Former Romanian transport minister indicted on corruption charges
Former Romanian transport minister, Ovidiu S., was indicted by the Anti-Corruption Department (DNA) for accepting bribes and favoring a company led by Romanian businessman Neli I, the local press reported, September 13.
“Former Transport Minister Ovidiu S. was indicted Thursday by the DNA prosecutors for influence peddling […],” Romanian news station Antena3 wrote on its website.
Ovidiu S. is accused of making a deal with Nelu I. whereby the latter opened up new fly routes for his airline Blue Air, allegedly helping Ovidiu’s godson in his regional political campaign. The suspect also allegedly accepted EUR 200,000 to guarantee that the Romanian Highways Authority (CNADNR) would revoke the cancellation of a contract with Nelu I.
The bribe was reportedly accepted in 2012 during the suspect’s earlier term as Transport Minister.
Ovidiu S. withdrew from his candidacy for the transport portfolio after the suspicions of his pending indictment were made public in late August. He was recommended for the candidacy by Prime Minister Victor Ponta following the resignation of previous Transport Minister Relu F. who was found guilty of corruption and sentenced to five years in prison.
Nelu I. was apprehended by police in December 2012. He is suspected of money laundering in connection with EU funds received for the building of a motorway by his construction company.