Three Israelis Arrested for Harassment of Romanian Anti-corruption Leader

It remains unclear why the suspects would seek to intimidate prosecutor Laura Codruta Kovesi, known for trying prominent officials accused of corruption.

In this file picture taken on Wednesday, April 8, 2015 Laura Codruta Kovesi the chief prosecutor of Romania's anti-corruption authority, speaks during an interview in Bucharest, Romania.
In this file picture taken on Wednesday, April 8, 2015 Laura Codruta Kovesi the chief prosecutor of Romania's anti-corruption authority, speaks during an interview in Bucharest, Romania.Credit: AP

Two Israeli men have been arrested in Romania on suspicion that they set up a criminal group to harass and intimidate the country's chief anti-corruption prosecutor, authorities said Wednesday.

The organized crime prosecutors' office, a separate agency, said that the suspects are employees of an Israeli company called Black Cube. They are suspected of hacking the emails of people close to anti-graft prosecutor Laura Codruta Kovesi, and of threatening and harassing family members and others close to her.

The office said that the suspected activity took place in March, but didn't say why the suspects would have tried to intimidate the prosecutor. Kovesi confirmed that there had been "an unsuccessful attempt" to intimidate her but did not elaborate.

The two men, whom prosecutors identified as Ron Weiner and David Geclowicz, were arrested April 3.

Kovesi, known for her tough approach to high-level corruption, was appointed last month for a second term as Romania's chief anti-graft prosecutor. She has held the position since 2013.

In 2015, her agency prosecuted 1,250 cases, with targets including a former prime minister and five former ministers.

Attorney Mordechai Zivin, representing the Israeli suspects, said "based on my experience and close familiarity with the Romanian justice system, I can say with certainty that the various Romanian bodies involved in the investigation will treat the suspects fairly and that their human rights will be observed as customary in a proper Western and European Union member country."

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