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The Institute for the Investigation of Communist Crimes and the Memory of the Romanian Exile

A presumptive communist torturer was sent to trial on March 9

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Penitenciarul Galaţi

On March 9, the Day of the Anti-Communist Political Prisoners of 1944-1989, the Institute for the Investigation of Communist Crimes and the Memory of the Romanian Exile (IICCMER) announces that The Public Prosecutor’s Office attached to the High Court of Cassation and Justice sent Marian Petrescu, former commander of the Galaţi Penitentiary during February 1, 1959 – June 12, 1961, to trial. He is accused of subjecting the anti-communist political prisoners to inhumane treatments. This decision was made possible due to the criminal complaint filed by IICCMER on June 30, 2016.

On this occasion, IICCMER also announced that it is currently planning a series of new criminal complaints related to the communist crimes which took place in Romania during 1947-1989.

In the criminal complaint filed by IICCMER against Petrescu Marian, the prosecutors have finalized the investigation and decided to send him to trial for committing the offence of inhumane treatments.

In the indictment, the prosecutors stated:

During February 1, 1959 – June 12, 1961, the defendant Petrescu Marian, as commander of the Galaţi Penitentiary, subjected the collectivity of political prisoners (counterrevolutionaries) detained at that prison to physical and psychical torture and extermination through repeated deeds of breaking or ignoring the law and of his professional obligations.

The defendant subjected the prisoners to inhumane and degrading regimens, which he applied regularly and systematically (constant starving, lack of or poor conditions for medical assistance, cold, miserable conditions, repeated beatings, disciplinary penalties, punishments and extermination).

All this lead to the death of the 102 people incarcerated at the mentioned prison, 90 of which were political prisoners.

The available evidence shows that the detention conditions were influenced by the prison commander which was the main responsible for the way the prisoners were treated.

The inhumane attitude of the defendant is also reflected by his policy regarding the burial of the prisoners: they were buried in a designated area of the Galaţi cemetery, with no notification of their families and with no knowledge of the location of their graves.

The file was forwarded for resolution to the Bucharest Court of Appeal.