Andrei Pantea, former first vice-prosecutor, who ensured the interim prosecutor general of Moldova, has been detained for 72 hours by the anticorruption prosecutors for abuse of power and transfer of the Karamalak case to the jurisdiction of the Russian Federation.

Press officer of the Prosecutor General’s Office, Maria Vieru, confirmed the information.

Karamalak, aka Bulgaru, is a thief in law in Moldova.

Pantea resigned from office, when the Superior Council of Prosecutors accepted his letter of resignation dated 21 September 2015.

Previously, audio recordings circulated in the press, in which Andrei Pantea had a phone conversation with the former athlete Ion Soltoianu, convicted for shooting the former police officer Ion Stratulat on a terrace in the center of Chisinau.

Update: Anticorruption Prosecutor's Office, conducted searches at the residence of Pantea, as a result, they found documents, relating to the case of Karamalak. At the same time, the detention of the former first vice- prosecutor general, Andrei Pantea, was made on the basis of evidence, collected in the case, including the statements of several witnesses that point out that he had received indications on the transfer of criminal proceedings of the Karamalak case.

Additionally, the detention was justified by the need to put under accusation the former first vice prosecutor general, Andrei Pantea, because the investigation was initiated "in personam".

According to the indictment, on 6 and 7 March 2013, Pantea ordered, unfounded and groundless, the resumption of the prosecution in two criminal cases initiated against Grigore Karamalak. The cases were withdrawn from the General Directorate of Penal and Criminal Prosecution under the Ministry of Internal Affairs and the Department for Exceptional Cases of the General Prosecutor being transmitted further to a subdivision of the Prosecutor's General Office.

From the moment of withdrawal of the cases to their transfer to the Russian Federation, not a single action of prosecution was undertaken in the criminal cases, which were joined in one proceeding. This shows the groundlessness resumption of the prosecution, which was made only with the purpose of its transfer.

Moreover, on 14.12.2010, the first vice-prosecutor general, Andrei Pantea, rejected a similar request filed by Grigore Karamalak’s lawyer, who asked to initiate the transfer of the prosecution and criminal case. The refusal was explained by the decision of 29 March 2011 of the Supreme Court, which dismissed the request filed by the lawyer in Grigore Karamalak’s interests, obliging the General Prosecution to initiate a waiver of the transfer of the prosecution to the Prosecutor General’s Office of the Russian Federation.

Subsequently, the criminal case was transferred to the Russian Federation and closed by the competent authorities of that state.

The order on the closing of the Karamalak case of 13 February 2015, issued by the criminal investigation officer of the Main Department of Investigation of the Russian Federation, states that the competent authorities of Moldova transferred the criminal case of Grigore Karamalak in contradiction to art. 13 of the Minsk Convention of 22.01.1993 "On legal assistance and legal relations in civil, family and criminal cases" namely, the case materials were not authenticated by any official, and no official stamp of the Prosecutor General was applied, not all the documents were attached, which throws doubt on the validity of the documents examined.

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