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Combating Corruption in Romania: Legal Remedies & the Ongoing Quest for Accountability / December 15, 2020
07.12.2020 | JURIDICE.ro

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In a virtual roundtable discussion led by Reagan-Fascell Democracy Fellow Camelia Bogdan, entitled “Combating Corruption in Romania: Legal Remedies and the Ongoing Quest for Accountability.” Sponsored by the National Endowment for Democracy’s International Forum for Democratic Studies, the meeting will take place virtually on Tuesday, December 15, 2020 from 11:00 am to 12:30 pm EST (4:00 to 5:30 pm UTC); connection instructions will be sent to confirmed participants. The event will take place under the Chatham House Rule.

Corruption poses an enormous challenge to democratic governance in Romania.  Despite efforts to curb corruption and its adverse impact on development and the rule of law, enforcement of anti-corruption measures remains weak, undermining accountability and contributing to a culture of impunity in the country.  Romania’s recent attempts to decriminalize graft and money laundering offenses, coupled with the targeting of judges and others who fight corruption, highlight these challenges and the ongoing threat to the rule of law. While members of Romanian civil society have consistently opposed efforts to undo the regime of anti-corruption regulations, the community of democratic states has not paid sufficient attention to the plight of those fighting for the rule of law in Romania, many of whom face a backlash at home for doing so.

In her presentation, Romanian judge Camelia Bogdan will draw attention to the persistent challenges of corruption in Romania, an EU member state. Drawing upon the example of her particular case, Judge Bogdan will highlight the need for the international community to hold states to account on their key legal obligations, including the U.N. Convention Against Corruption and the regime of international anti-money laundering standards.  She will offer a set of recommendations for strengthening transparency and the rule of law in Romania. NED Vice President for Studies and Analysis Christopher Walker will moderate the session, and Dr. Dennis Deletant, Emeritus Professor of Romanian Studies at University College, London, will provide comments.

Judge Camelia Bogdan is a judge on the Bucharest Court of Appeals and an expert on asset recovery, countering money laundering, and combating transnational corruption and other financial crimes. She has twice been expelled from the Romanian judiciary on politically motivated charges, as a result of her battle against the corruption of political and economic elites. An accomplished scholar with a doctorate in criminal law from the University of Bucharest, she has authored two monographs on asset recovery and money laundering, several practical guides to asset recovery for practitioners at the national and EU level, and over 130 judicial studies in law journals. She is an associate researcher with the Centre Régional Francophone de Recherches Avancées en Sciences Humaines et Sociales de Bucarest (CEREFREA – Villa Noël) and contributes regularly to the University of Cambridge’s International Symposium on Financial Crimes. In 2018, she was a Fulbright scholar at the University of Florida’s Levin College of Law. In recognition of her work, she received the 2019 Ion Ratiu Democracy Award from the Woodrow Wilson Center.

Dr. Dennis Deletant is Emeritus Professor of Romanian Studies at the School of Slavonic and East European Studies, University College, London (UCL), where he taught between 1969 and 2011. He held the same position at the University of Amsterdam (on secondment from UCL) between 2003 and 2010. From 2011 to 2020, he was Visiting Ion Rațiu Professor of Romanian Studies at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C. In December 2000, he was awarded the Romanian Order of Merit for his services to Romanian democracy, and in November 2016, he received the Star of Romania (the country’s highest civilian decoration) for his contributions to the promotion of Romanian history and culture. He is the author of several monographs on the contemporary history of Romania, including Romania under Communism: Paradox and Degeneration (2019) and British Clandestine Activities in Romania during World War II (2016).

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