In the wake of a CIJM investigation// Details of the criminal investigation on behalf of prosecutor Vladislav Căruceru
Procurorul Vladislav Căruceru

Vladislav Căruceru is the prosecutor who has been referred to justice for allegedly compelling individuals to make statements and disclosing data related to a criminal investigation. This information is based on a document exclusively published by and signed by Veronica Dragalin, the head of the Anticorruption Prosecutor's Office. The Center for Investigative Journalism (CIJM) has also published an investigation which reveals that Evgheny Kheyman, the person who managed the company Westerby Limited in the Bahamas and sponsored the Socialist Party in 2016, was involved. Kheyman, who served as the administrator of the Enterprise with Foreign Capital "Natur Bravo" from December 2016 to November 2017, allegedly faced pressure from Căruceru to provide statements. However, Căruceru has repeatedly denied these allegations.

Vladislav Căruceru, a prosecutor in the Section for the unification of practice in the field of criminal prosecution within the General Prosecutor's Office, has been considered a suspect since 2021 in a criminal case involving the compulsion to make statements. He is accused of pressuring a former employee of Natur Bravo Company to make statements in favor of Evgheni Kheyman, the former administrator of the offshore company in the Bahamas who sponsored Igor Dodon's presidential campaign in 2016 using funds from a former Duma deputy of the Russian Federation. Throughout the investigation, Prosecutor Căruceru has maintained his plea of not guilty.

A criminal case was filed in 2020 against Vladislav Căruceru based on a complaint filed by the wife of Evgheni Kheyman against Mukhmad Galaev, the director of the Natur Bravo canning factory, and Roman Statnîi, a former anti-corruption Prosecutor. In her complaint, Kheyman's wife, who had been accused and convicted of fraud, alleged that the State Prosecutor had fabricated a criminal case against her husband in 2018 at the behest of Vladimir Plahotniuc and the former Prosecutor General, Eduard Harunjen. Susana Kheyman also claimed in her complaint that her husband had been threatened by the Statnîi and coerced into surrendering goods and money amounting to a total of 1.8 million euros.

After the PSRM (Party of Socialists of the Republic of Moldova) withdrew from the government following the early elections in July 2021, Mukhmad Galaev filed a complaint against Căruceru, stating that the Prosecutor had pressured his former driver to make false statements against him. Galaev explained, "My former driver, Radu Maftei, was summoned to Vladislav Căruceru's office. For over an hour, Prosecutor Căruceru attempted to coerce my former employee into providing statements that would support Kheyman's claims that I and Statnîi had deprived him of his London apartment. Maftei was expected to declare that he had provided Kheyman with a contract renouncing the apartment. However, my former employee did not succumb to Căruceru's pressure. Subsequently, Evgheni Kheyman was called to the prosecutor's office, where he faced similar coercion. To the best of my knowledge, Radu Maftei did not yield to the pressure. I filed this complaint to demonstrate that the case filed against me is fabricated and that I am not at fault," Galaev stated.

Galaev also mentioned that he had previously lodged a complaint against Kheyman for embezzlement during his tenure as the company's manager. The Anticorruption Prosecutor's Office initiated a criminal case on behalf of the former administrator, which was overseen by Roman Statnîi. In 2018, Evgheni Kheyman was sentenced by the Chisinau Court of Appeal to four years in prison, with the sentence being carried out under general prosecution. The owners of Natur Bravo, the family of former Russian deputy Vaha Agaev, sought to recover the funds stolen by Kheyman. When the PSRM assumed control of the government and Alexandr Stoianoglo was appointed as the prosecutor general, the Supreme Court of Justice referred the case back to the appeals court, and the General Prosecutor's Office acknowledged Kheyman's complaints.

Cristina Ţărnă, Mukhmad Galaev's lawyer, subsequently submitted a request for the recusal of Vladislav Căruceru.


When questioned by reporters from the Anticorupţ portal, Roman Statnîi stated that he was not aware of the statements made by Radu Maftei or Galaev's complaint. However, he expressed confidence in his eventual acquittal. Statnîi said, "I have not been informed. I only know that Deputy Lilian Carp was informed that the investigations are reaching their conclusion. I am not worried. The article that was charged against me was declared unconstitutional at the time the case was filed. The court declared the result of the requested expertise null and void and found several procedural irregularities in the management of the case."

Vladislav Căruceru, in response to the accusations leveled against him, stated that he disagrees with the charges. He argued, "There is a signed witness statement on record. There is no indication that they disagreed or that they were pressured by me or anyone else. The witness was informed of their right to have a lawyer present. They could have requested a lawyer appointed ex officio. Why didn't they raise any complaints at that time but only now?" Căruceru sought to justify his actions.

Regarding the question of whether Evgheny Kheyman was present during Radu Maftei's hearing, Vladislav Căruceru stated that he would need to recollect this specific detail.

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