Judicial routine in the file of the former SIS director, Vasile Botnari

Sursa: CIJM

The examination of the criminal case in which the former director of SIS, Vasile Botnari, is accused of illicit enrichment doesn't move forward. Since October, when the first court hearing was scheduled, neither the prosecutors nor the defense has been able to present their position. The criminal case against Botnari was also started due to a journalistic investigation, carried out by the team of the Center for Investigative Journalism, which proved that the dignitary did not declare a luxury building in which he lived during his public office, as well as other properties.

Two of the four scheduled meetings were postponed at the request of the accuser, one was interrupted, and at the last one, on December 5, Botnari's mother-in-law, accused in the case of complicity, did not appear. The next meeting is scheduled for January 30, 2023.

The criminal case was sent to the Chisinau Court, Buiucani office, at the end of September. The ex-director of SIS, Vasile Botnari, is on trial together with his mother-in-law, who is accused of complicity.

The prosecutors state that Vasile Botnari would have implemented a plan to procure cars and houses through intermediaries and put them in the names of his relatives or trusted persons. Thus, real estate property with a total value of over 24.5 million lei was identified, as well as owned automobiles worth over 4 million lei. Therefore, with the authorization of the investigating judge, the anti-corruption prosecutors applied security measures in the form of seizure of these assets, for possible special confiscation.

"The incriminated acts took place in the period 2014-2019. Then, the accused consecutively held positions of public dignity (in Parliament, Government, and SIS), during which he bought goods through third parties, including his mother-in-law and daughter, whose value far exceeded the financial means acquired by the accused. For example, during the period 2014-2019, the mother-in-law, being a pensioner, had an income of only approximately 329,000 lei in total and during the same period, she accumulated real estate with a total value of over 19 million lei. The accusers declare that the daughter, having no income during that period, obtained an apartment, parking space, and car with a total value of over 5.9 million lei".

The investigation carried out by the reporters of the Center for Investigative Journalism in March 2021 revealed the fact that the current lands and buildings of Vasile Botnari came into his own during the period when he held high positions of public dignity, being one of the close associates and protégés of Vladimir Plahotniuc

Vasile Botnari never reported any housing in the asset declarations, signed as a civil servant. The former civil servant declared only the income from his salary, even though his family had businesses, and  his wife Natalia was the administrator of some of them. He owns, since May 2004, a 30% share in SRL Vabaro Lux, a company specializing in the sale of wood and carpentry articles.

In 2008, Natalia Botnari founded a services company A & N SERVICE. She has always been the sole administrator of the enterprise. In 2019, the company's turnover amounted to 1.33 million lei.

In 2014, Vasile Botnari's wealth was subject to control by the National Integrity Authority. In the statement of findings, signed by Alexandru Donciu,  is mentioned that Vasile Botnari did not violate the legal regime of declaring income and properties.


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