Court declares indictment against lawyer null and void
On 29 December 2014, the Buiucani Court declared the indictment that was issued against lawyer Alexandru Bernaz on 9 September 2014 null and void. Bernaz is thus no longer subject of a criminal investigation.
A few weeks before this decision, Lawyers for Lawyers called on the Moldovian authorities to conduct an investigation into the charges against Bernaz. L4L had reason to believe these charges were fabricated and constituted an act of retaliation for his work as a defense lawyer.
Last summer, Bernaz filed complaints against prosecutors of the Anticorruption Prosecutor’s Office. He challenged the procedural decisions of the prosecution and of the criminal investigation officers of the National Anticorruption Center (NAC) in a criminal investigation against his client. Shortly thereafter, the Anticorruption Prosecutor’s Office issued criminal charges against Bernaz in another criminal case in which he acted as defense counsel, accusing him of co-participation to the offense of which his client was accused.
In its decision the Court stated that Bernaz acted in his professional capacity as a lawyer, and that his professional activities were legal. According to the Court, the Public Prosecutor did not provide any evidence that supported a reasonable suspicion of Bernaz committing a criminal offence.
Lawyers for Lawyers welcomes the decision of the Buiucani Court and will continue to support Moldavian lawyers like Alexandru Bernaz.
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