Former head of Prison no. 13, Igor Juvala, was detained for abuse of office. This information was confirmed for CrimeMoldova by the head of Anticorruption Prosecution, Viorel Morari.

The former prison chief was arrested on November 24 and is suspected of abuse of office. He is charged with facilitating and enabling remand prisoners to communicate with other persons, involved in the offense and who know important facts of the prosecution.

According to a statement, issued by the Prosecution General’s Office on  November 10, the Anticorruption Prosecutor's Office registered the report, stating that two mobile phones had been found in the cell, where the accused Veaceslav Platon is held. The phones were detected by anticorruption prosecutors on November 2, 2016 following the search that was authorized by the judge as part of the criminal case, accusing Veaceslav Platon of committing offenses, foreseen by art.190 par. (5) of the Criminal Code and Article 243 par. (3) b) of the criminal Code on the fact of embezzlement and money laundering through the Savings Bank of Moldova. On this count, the Anticorruption Prosecutor's Office initiated a criminal case, in accordance with Article 328 par. (1) of the Criminal Code, in terms of abuse of office, committed by the officers of the Department of Penitentiary Institutions.

Additionally, the press release states that the public person was detained on grounds of statements, made by a witness, held in Prison No. 13 in the period of May - August 2016 and the detection of two mobile phones in Veaceslav Platon’s cell. According to the witness, in the period of May - August 2016, the detainee of Prison No. 13, P.S. was escorted to the office of the Head of the Prison, who offered her the opportunity to have telephone conversations with the accused Veaceslav Platon and Vitalie Burlacu, who at that stage were wanted. Prosecutors also established that in September-November 2016, Veaceslav Platon illegally detained two mobile phones in the cell, which were detected in the course of the search.

Igor Juvala was preventively detained for 72 hours and the Anticorruption Prosecution Office continues criminal investigations to establish the circumstances of the case and punish the guilty persons.

Juvala risks a fine of 650-1150 conventional units, or imprisonment of up to 3 years, in both cases, with the deprivation of the right to occupy certain positions or to practice certain activities for a period of 2 to 5 years.

Former head of institution, Igor Juvala, was dismissed after a scandal over the escape of a prisoner, which the Department of Penitentiary Institutions (DPI) tried to cover up. 

Several sources within the DPI communicated for CrimeMoldova, requesting anonymity, that the prisoner had been helped to escape by a lawyer, who gave him his clothes. When the prisoner that was under investigation, escaped, the lawyer left the institution, too. The same sources claimed that the alleged escape was a framed up test for Juvala, coordinated in advance by the DPI and NAC, and the acting head of Prison No. 13 Igor Pintea, was one of the organizers.

Igor Juvala’s office and residence had been searched, but nothing compromising was found. In October 2016, Chisinau Court of Appeal imposed a fine of 500 lei on Juvala for having prevented the meetings of the former Prime Minister Vlad Filat with his relatives.

Recall that the sources in the DPI informed us that Igor Pintea became the chief of Prison No. 13 after the resignation of Juvala. He is a former police officer, aged 47. Pintea is accused of mistreating a youth man during the protests in 2009 and the court of the first instance and later the court of appeal sentenced him to five years of imprisonment. However, the Supreme Court ordered the retrial of the case to elucidate the circumstances. Currently, the case is pending in the Center District Court. However, the lawyer of the victim requested the case to be reexamined by the ECHR.

Pintea was also one of the organizers of the prisoner’s escape.

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