According to judicial sources, Romanian anti-corruption prosecutors and the United States judicial authorities started a complex investigation on Friday, September 30. They searched the Mihail Kogalniceanu military air base near Constanta, Romania, to gather evidence in a corruption case.
In a press release, the Romanian National Anti-Corruption Directorate stated that prosecutors are looking into a criminal case involving suspicions of corruption or similar to corruption. According to Romanian legislation, this is punishable with up to 7 years in jail.
There are 27 searches that anti-corruption prosecutors are currently handling. These searches included the military base offices where documents about some suspect purchases were found. The investigation also targets several businessmen and civil employees at the military base.
This is not the first time the prosecutors have investigated the activity at the base. In a case of diesel theft, Romanian anti-mafia prosecutors raided the Kogalniceanu military base last year. Investigators discovered several individuals who had formed an organized criminal group in Romania in 2017. The gang used to stole liquid fuels, including diesel, from the Mihail Kogalniceanu military base and areas in Constanta dedicated to military tactical exercises.
At that moment, the investigators claimed that the culprits took diesel fuel from generators at different times from military units at the US military base Mihail Kogalniceanu. The total damage is estimated at $2,000,000.
Mihail Kogalniceanu has become one of the Eastern flank’s most critical and strategic air bases. The US, Romanian and NATO troops use the airbase, and there has been a constant increase in the number of military personnel arriving at Mihail Kogalniceanu from NATO countries to strengthen the Eastern flank in the context of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.