3 March 2021
A Romanian court sentenced a former tourism minister, Elena Udrea, as well as Ioana Basescu , the daughter of former president Traian Basescu to jail on Tuesday for money laundering and instigating others to take bribes in a 2009 for presidential campaign financing case.
Elena Udrea, a close political ally of President Basescu, was sentenced to eight years in prison for corruption by Romania’s Court of Appeal.
Ioana Basescu, was sentenced to five years in prison for collecting and laundering money that was then used to pay for her father’s presidential election campaign in 2009.
Anti-corruption prosecutors exposed conflict of interest, abuse of power, fraud and awarding of state contracts in exchange for bribes. Udrea, then was regional development minister and informal presidential campaign coordinator instigated a former deputy minister and a county council head demand bribes worth roughly 1.6 million lei from two businessmen in exchange for public works contracts.
Traian Basescu, who served as president of Romania from 2004 to 2014, is currently an MEP (Member of European Parliament) for the European People’s Party.
According to Transparency International, Romania is one of the European Union’s most corrupt member states. In the past five years the country has seen its largest street protests in decades over entrenched corruption. The attempts by a previous leftist government to decriminalize some graft offences were viewed with concerns in Brussels and Washington.