Romania’s anticorruption prosecutors have prosecuted the mayor of Baia Mare, Catalin Chereches, for abuse of office, complicity to forgery, and tax evasion, writes www.romania-insider.com.
According to the National Anticorruption Directorate (DNA), Chereches coordinated a group which embezzled the funds that should have reached the local handball clubs HCM and Minaur Baia Mare.
The mayor knew that the handball clubs’ accounts registered fictitious expenses, but he made sure that the members of the Baia Mare Local Council would allocate money to support the two clubs’ activities, according to DNA investigators. The players did not receive the money, which instead got into the pockets of the criminal group’s members. For example, the handball players from HCM Baia Mare signed the documents according to which they each received RON 65,000 (some EUR 15,000) but in reality they got less than RON 10,000 (some EUR 2,200).
The mayor was the person in charge with selecting the handball players at the two clubs, signing the contracts with them, establishing the value of the contracts for each player, selecting the coaches and the equipment, and managing the amounts allocated by the Baia Mare Local Council.