Supreme Court of Justice ruled: Former Romanian MP Cristian Rizea, a refugee in Chisinau, will not be granted political asylum in Moldova
Cristian Mihai Rizea, a former member of Romania’s parliament who is under international investigation, whose citizenship of Moldova was withdrawn by Igor Dodon in November 2020 and whose application for political asylum was subsequently rejected, is losing the lawsuit against the Moldovan president in which he sought the annulment of a decree invoked when he rejected his application for political asylum. A ruling to that effect was issued by the Supreme Court of Justice.
On 4 May 2022, Cristian Rizea filed an application against the President of the Republic of Moldova for the annulment of an administrative act of a regulatory nature invoked in the rejection of his application for political asylum.
In the grounds of his action, Rizea stated that on 4 November 2020 he had applied to the former President of the Republic of Moldova, Igor Dodon, for political asylum, and in a reply signed by Nicolae Posturusu, the former Secretary General of the former President, he had been informed that the application to the Head of State for political asylum had been rejected on the basis of the Regulation on the granting of political asylum by the President of the Republic of Moldova, approved by a decree of 31 October 2003.
Thus, Rizea requested the annulment of the 2003 decree.
By judgment of 21 November 2022 of the Chisinau Court of Appeal, the application was rejected.
Having examined the merits of the case, the Chisinau Court of Appeal held that the preamble to the decree of 31 October 2003 did not affect the legality of the Regulation on the granting of political asylum by the President of the Republic of Moldova, for which reason the arguments put forward by Rizea in that regard were unfounded.
On 22 December 2022, Rizea’s lawyer lodged an appeal against the judgment of 21 November 2022 of the Chisinau Court of Appeal, requesting that the judgment be quashed and that a decision be issued allowing the application.
By reference of 25 January 2023, the President of the Republic of Moldova requested the dismissal of the appeal “because the court of first instance correctly established that the administrative act of a regulatory nature was issued in strict compliance with the requirements of the law”. Thus, by a judgment delivered on 15 February 2023, the Supreme Court of Justice declared Cristian Rizea’s appeal inadmissible and the judgment is irrevocable.
Former Romanian MP Cristian Rizea, sentenced to 4 years and 8 months in prison in Romania and who took refuge in Chisinau, was stripped of his Moldovan citizenship on 2 November 2020 by a decree signed by former head of state Igor Dodon.
“There was also an interesting decree I signed yesterday. There has been a lot of talk in the press about a certain Rizea, a citizen of Romania who has been hiding in Moldova, and I want to tell you that at the proposal of the citizenship commission yesterday I signed a decree cancelling the citizenship of this character, and already the competent authorities in Moldova and Romania must exchange information and take action to expel this criminal from the country according to Romanian justice,” Dodon said on November 3, 2020.
The former Romanian MP is charged in Chisinau in a criminal case for false statements. He is accused by prosecutors of lying when he said he was not in trouble with the law when his papers for Moldovan citizenship were perfected.
The criminal case will be resumed from the beginning by a different panel after a five-month break.
Former Romanian MP Cristian Rizea, accused of acquiring Moldovan citizenship with misconduct, caught making false statements: case file sent to trial. Details from PG
At the end of 2021, the Chisinau Court of Appeal issued a ruling depriving Rizea of his right to refugee status in Moldova and rejecting his request to suspend the 2020 presidential decree withdrawing his Moldovan citizenship.
Rizea’s extradition case is being examined at the Chisinau court, at the request of the Bucharest authorities, who are waiting for the fugitive MP to serve his sentence.
Cristian Rizea has been under international search through Interpol channels for arrest and extradition since 19.03.2019, with a view to serving a prison sentence in Romania for a term of 4 years and 8 months for the crime of influence peddling, money laundering and influencing statements, according to the final judgment issued by the High Court of Cassation and Justice of Romania.