Intimidation of Attorneys in Moldova. The Statements made by the Bar Association
Though with some delay I decided to post here the statements made by the Moldavian Bar Association in connection with the facts of intimidation of the members of the Bar in Moldova:
November 14, 2006 Chişinău
of the Council of the Moldavian Bar Association
The Council of the Bar Association of Moldova after having examined at the extraordinary sitting the request to intervene made by the attorneys Eugen Tetelea and Maria Tetelea who have their office in Calarasi, 159 Alexandru cel Bun str., decides as follows:
- To qualify the search of the offices and dwellings of attorneys Eugen and Maria Tetelea as illegal actions in the sense of art. art. 8 of the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms.
- To express a protest against the actions of the criminal prosecution officer, the prosecutor and the judge of instruction against the attorneys Eugen and Maria Tetelea, considering these actions as abuse and exceeding of power.
- To demand the competent authorities to investigate the legality of the search procedures at the offices of attorneys Tetelea and their dwellings and to refrain from such actions in future.
- To forward the text of the Declaration of Protest to the respective authorities (the Superior Council of the Magistrates, the Prosecutor’s General Office, the Ministry of Internal Affairs) and mass media.
- To inform the governing bodies of the Republic (the President of the Republic, the Prime Minister of the Republic, the Chairman of the Parliament) about the illegal actions committed by the criminal prosecution officer, the prosecutor and the judge of instruction against the attorneys Tetelea.
- To inform the public opinion, international organizations, national and international non-governmental organizations about the actions of intimidation of attorneys by the law-enforcement officials, prosecution and justice bodies.
- To convene a press-conference and to give publicity to the case of intimidation of attorneys Tetelea.
- In case if the competent authorities take no urgent measures we reserve the right to call attorneys to resort to the actions of protest including the complete boycotting of participation in cases examination at the criminal prosecution and judicial stages.
The President of the Council of the Moldavian Bar Association
DECLARATION OF THE COUNCIL OF THE MOLDAVIAN BAR ASSOCIATION IN RELATION WITH THE ATHORITIES’ ABUSES COMMITED AGAINST THE BAR INSTITUTION
The Council of the Moldavian Bar Association express their anxiety in relation with the more and more frequent abuses by the law-enforcement bodies against the members of the Bar of Moldova. After threatening the attorneys Roman Zadoinov and Ana Urschi with the criminal prosecution in June of the current year the authorities have arranged a new provocation against the bar institution.
In defiance of the Law on the Bar and art. 8 of the European Convention the officers of the criminal prosecution, the prosecutor, the judge of instruction authorized and searched the office and dwellings of attorneys Eugen and Maria Tetelea at the town of Calarasi. The search was carried out having breached the legal guaranties of attorney’s independence provided by law. The Council of the Moldavian Bar Association consider that the actions towards these two attorneys purpose not just the aim to put them under pressure in relation with certain cases that they participate in but also the intimidation of all members of the Bar in order to force them to take collaborationist positions to the detriment of their clients.
The Council of the Moldavian Bar Association pay the authorities’ attention to the fact that the intervention into activity of persons that carry out defense in the limits provided is prosecuted by law (art. 26 of the Constitution of RM). In this connection we also remind the Prosecutor’s General Office, the Ministry of Internal Affairs and the Judicial Machinery that in a society based on respect towards justice an attorney play not just a technical part and his mission is not limited just to carrying out a legal mandate. In a state of law an attorney is indispensable to justice and has a mission to defend the rights and freedoms of those who stand before courts. This role charges the state to guarantee the absolute independence and freedom from any pressure to attorneys. Hence intimidation of attorneys, irrespective of the methods it is carried out by, undermines the acts of justice as the foundation of the state of law.
Taking into consideration all the abovementioned the Council of the Moldavian Bar Association solicit the Ministry of Internal Affairs and the Prosecutor’s General Office not to resort without necessity to carrying out any procedural actions towards attorneys in order not to violate the right to defense of their clients. We solicit the judges of instruction to display the responsibility and not to authorize the searches and other procedural actions against attorneys except for the cases of existence of some trustworthy evidence that such actions are legal. In case if such incidents continue the Council of the Moldavian Bar Association reserve the right to resort the actions of protest in the limits provided by law.
Gheorghe Amihalachioaie the President of the Council of the Moldavian Bar Association
November 20, 2006