The Bucharest mayor Sorin Oprescu, arrested on corruption charges two days ago, announced that he will not resign from the current position.

The court issued a 30-day temporary arrest warrant for the mayor. The decision is not yet final and can be appealed at the Bucharest Court of Appeal.

Oprescu sent a message to all those who “were in a hurry to accuse him” to “have a little more patience” after his lawyer, Alexandru Chiciu, visited him in arrest, according to Mediafax newswire.

The lawyer said the mayor is thinking about his defense strategy at the moment.

In the meantime, several other people who are believed to be involved in the case were taken into custody. Cristian Stanca, former driver of Sorin Oprescu, Mircea Octavian Constantinescu, economic director at the Bucharest City Hall, as well as other five people were arrested in this file.

Oprescu was detained on September 5 under orders from the National Anticorruption Department (DNA) prosecutors, on bribe charges. 

According to a DNA press release, prosecutors are investigating Oprescu for acts of corruption that he allegedly committed between 2013 and 2015.

“Between 2013-2015,  a well-organized group that the accused Oprescu Sorin Mircea was part of, set up within the Bucharest City Hall a system in which companies that wanted to receive contracts with public institutions under the mayor had to give up a part of the gross profit they made from those contracts as bribe to decision agents within the staff of the Bucharest City mayor,” says the press release, quoted by Mediafax newswire.

The company kept up to 35 percent of the gross profit while the rest of the money was paid to the public workers in the Bucharest City Hall as bribes. Approximately 10 percent of the value of the contract went to Sorin Oprescu, according to the press release.

Otilia Haraga