Romanian Central Banker Olteanu Detained in Corruption Probe

  • Deputy Governor Olteanu detained for influence peddling
  • Central bank spokesman has ‘no immediate’ comment on Olteanu

Romanian Deputy Central Bank Governor Bogdan Olteanu was detained by anti-corruption prosecutors for alleged influence peddling during his time as parliament speaker in 2008, the prosecutors said on Friday.

Olteanu, who became central bank deputy governor in 2009, allegedly received 1 million euros ($1.1 million) and other benefits from a businessman to push through the appointment of a certain administrator for the Danube Delta Reservation Authority, the prosecutors said in a statement on their website. They will seek the Supreme Court’s approval of Olteanu’s arrest for 30 days.

“In July to November 2008, Olteanu requested and received 1 million euros and electoral support in exchange for proceedings to convince government members to name a certain person as Danube Delta governor,” the prosecutors said. “The money was delivered by the businessman through an intermediary at a party headquarters.”

The central bank said its activity wasn’t affected, adding Olteanu’s responsibilities will be taken over by the other board members according to internal procedures, spokesman Dan Suciu said by phone.

Olteanu is the latest high-ranking Romanian official to be probed by prosecutors as part of a nationwide anti-graft campaign that engulfed former Prime Minister Victor Ponta, while he was in office last year and put hundreds of politicians and businessmen in prison.

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