The former Deputy General Prosecutor, Ruslan Popov, who is accused of illicit enrichment and making false public statements, has contested in court the act issued in his name by the National Integrity Authority (ANI) on September 30, 2021, which appears as evidence in the case. Both the criminal case against Ruslan Popov and the investigation into his wealth were initiated following an inquiry by the Center for Investigative Journalism from Moldova (CIJM), which uncovered the Popov family's schemes and wealth.
Magistrate Viorica Dodon from the Chisinau District Court has scheduled the first hearing to examine the appeal of the former head of the General Prosecutor's Office for October 17, 2023.
In the document issued by integrity inspector Adrian Fotescu on September 30, 2020, the termination of the control procedure of Ruslan Popov's assets was ordered. However, the integrity inspector notified the Tax Office to commence an audit of the peasant household registered in the name of Alexandru Popov, Ruslan Popov's father.
The integrity inspector also discovered irregularities in Ruslan Popov's asset declarations and gave him a 30-day deadline to make corrections.
Ruslan Popov is accused in a criminal case of illicit enrichment. The prosecutor allegedly is the final beneficiary of a modern orchard and a refrigerator for storing fruit registered in his father's name, a simple pensioner from the village of Milestii Mici.
The former prosecutor is also charged with committing eight episodes of forgery in the declaration of his assets and personal interests.
Popov was detained at the beginning of October 2021 and was in preventive detention for almost 30 days in the detention center of the National Anticorruption Center.
Initially, the Chisinau Court ordered his placement under house arrest, but a few days later, the Chisinau Court of Appeal granted the anti-corruption prosecutors' request to place him in detention center.
Later, the Chisinau Court of Appeal modified the decisions of the trial court regarding Popov, extending his house arrest. The former prosecutor escaped the preventive measure on the eve of the winter holidays.
During the investigation, Prosecutor Popov was suspended from his position, and in March 2022, he submitted a request for release from the system, which was accepted.
Ruslan Popov pleads not guilty.
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