Notorious star-lawyer Valerian Mînzat, sentenced to nine years in prison, was released early. Lipcani Prison appeals the decision
Sentenced to nine years in prison in 2015, star lawyer Valerian Mînzat was released early from Lipcani Prison No 2, where he was serving his sentence in a fraud case. According to the information presented on the court portal, following the decision of the magistrates of the Edineț Court, Briceni headquarters, on 7 September, Valerian Mînzat’s request for amnesty was admitted.
Valerian Mînzat was stripped of his lawyer’s license in 2018 by an order issued by the Minister of Justice. He served his sentence from 26 May 2017 and the end of his term was set to four years from now- for 25 May 2026.
According to ZdG sources, the star lawyer’s sentence was reduced because of “inhuman conditions of detention”, but also because Mînzat was employed without pay in the labour force.
Valerian Mînzat, a former employee of the Criminal Police, was sentenced in 2015 to nine years in prison after having, in 2009, following a prior agreement with Ion Taran, then head of the Road Accident Investigation Section of the General Police Commissariat, and Dorel Găină, head of the Legal Assistance Section of the “Moldasig” insurance company, to stage a road accident with the intention of getting hold of a sum of money from the company. On 5 April 2017, eight years after the crime, during which time Mânzat had not spent a day behind bars, the judges of the Court of Appeal upheld the decision of the lower court, sending Mânzat to prison for nine years.
Mânzat’s imprisonment did not take place for almost two months. On Saturday, 27 May, police enforced the sentence on the celebrity lawyer known to the public for his lavish lifestyle on social media.
The reasoned decision by magistrates Xenofon Ulianovschi, Svetlana Balmuș and Ion Secrieru, which was made public, describes in detail the plan by which the crime was committed. Three days after the reasoned judgment was read out, the Court of Appeal’s decision was appealed to the Supreme Court.
At the same time, the lawyer of the Penitentiary No. 2 Lipcani has appealed to the court the decision of the Edinet Court, Briceni office, by which the former star lawyer Valerian Mînzat was released early from the Penitentiary No. 2 Lipcani, where he was serving his sentence in a fraud case.
In a comment to Ziarul de Gardă, Mihail Rotaru, spokesman of the National Administration of Penitentiaries (ANP), said that the appeal was filed on September 14, which is a standard procedure established when a person is released on parole early.
“(…) The lawyer of Penitentiary No. 2 Lipcani filed an appeal regarding the application of Article 91 – early conditional release. Similarly, for the conditions of detention on what 106 days were removed, the same, was addressed to the court with appeal (…). Overall, he met all the conditions: he worked in the penitentiary, he went to the educational programs that were established as mandatory in order to fulfill the plan and, respectively, the accumulation of the amnesty to the conditions of detention and to the provisions of Article 91, he fulfilled them and was released, but as I said before, it is the obligation of the legal officer of the penitentiary to file a mandatory appeal if there is a question of release (…)”, said Mihail Rotaru.
ZdG has previously written about this case, but also about the fact that lawyer Valerian Mânzat, who gave his wife a Porsche car worth 45 thousand euros, was appointed by the Union of Lawyers of Moldova to participate as a voting member in the Criminal Justice Reform process for 2011-2016. After that, Mânzat was removed from the working group.