The Chisinau District Court will examine the file of ex-deputy general prosecutor Ruslan Popov, accused, along with his wife, prosecutor Iulia Popov, of illicit enrichment in the absence of any defendants. The respective file was initiated following a series of investigations by the Center for Journalistic Investigations of Moldova (CIJM) into the wealth and connections of the former prosecutor.
The meeting was postponed at the request of Calinici's defense lawyer, a businessman accused of involvement in the alleged schemes of Ruslan Popov. The defense attorney informed the court that his client underwent surgery and needs two months for rehabilitation.
The president of the court panel, Vasilisa Muntean, announced that she received the consent from the hierarchically superior court to hold the court session in the absence of some defendants who will not comply with the subpoenas to avoid delaying the examination of the case.
The first meeting in the Popov case took place on July 15, 2022. Since then, 16 meetings have been scheduled, of which nine have been postponed.
Ruslan Popov is accused in a criminal case of illicit enrichment. The prosecutor would be the final beneficiary of a modern orchard and a refrigerator for storing fruit registered in the name of his father, 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 assets and personal interests.
Detained at the beginning of October 2021, Popov was in preventive detention for almost 30 days in the isolation cell 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 solitary confinement.
Later, the Chisinau Court of Appeal modified the trial court's decisions regarding Popov, extending his house arrest. The former prosecutor escaped the preventive measure on the eve of the winter holidays.
Prosecutor Popov was suspended from his position during the investigation, and in March 2021, he submitted a request for release from the system, which was accepted.
On the other hand, Ruslan Popov pleads not guilty.