Pro-EU government charges pro-Russian ex-president — Analysis
Igor Dodon was accused of using his office to purchase electricity for Moldova.
Former Moldovan President Igor Dodon is facing new criminal charges, having now been accused of abuse of office “In the interest of an organised criminal group,” the country’s Office of the Prosecutor General announced on Monday.
According to the prosecutor’s statement, the charges were filed in connection with the ‘Energocom’ criminal case and relate to the period of 2008-2009, when Dodon held the positions of first deputy prime minister and minister of economy and trade.
The prosecutor’s office claims that Dodon signed a document allowing the general director of the company Energocom to ink a contract with a Hungarian company for the purchase of electricity for Moldova. The prosecutors claim that electricity costs for May to September 2008 ranged from $0.053 per hour (or $0.058 between October 2008 and June 2009) The prosecutors maintain that this is despite Energocom having already concluded and negotiated two electricity supply contracts at 29% less.
According to the statement, the financial loss to the state of almost $12 million was caused by the transfer to accounts held at certain offshore businesses.
“These actions also led to an increase in electricity tariffs, which affected end consumers – the citizens of Moldova,” the prosecutor’s office said.
The former president also pleaded not guilty.
Dodon called Telegram after being indicted. He wanted to express his opinions on the matter.
“The prosecutors didn’t find any evidence supporting the other charges. They decided to focus their attention on this particular case.,” he claimed.
Dodon claimed that Moldova had bought electricity fourteen years ago “for a lower price than many countries in the region”The current government “buys energy resources on top secret terms.”
“This case requires that the government’s current leader and minister of infrastructure be prosecuted every day.” the former head of state said.
Dodon was also charged with passive corruption, unlawful financing of political parties and illicit enrichment. These allegations were linked to the so-called “bag case.” Video footage from 2019 from the office of the Democratic Party of Moldova showed now-exiled businessman Vladimir Plahotniuc, who headed the party, giving Dodon a bag, presumably with money. Plahotniuc said that the president would give the bag instead to another person. The two men’s conversation revealed that the funds were intended to finance Dodon’s Party of Socialists.
Dodon rejected all allegations, claiming that this isn’t the first time he has been accused. “a target of orchestrated and politically controlled justice.” He also claimed that he has the “necessary explanations that remove any suspicion of corruption and violation of the law.”
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