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January 18, 2008 Torture in prisons is kept secret

Father Don Demidoff, in Romania also known as Don Bosco, will continue his fight against torture in Romanian prisons The particular situation in Romania: "the state authorities do not attach importance to law and justice actually is blind" Torture in prisons is kept secret The efforts of Father Don Demidoff for the termination of torture against the prisoners in Codlea have lead to the denial of the public prosecutors to carry out criminal proceedings. Additionally a prisoner has been "instructed" to appeal against Don Demidoff. After extensive endeavors the public prosecutors, informed by Father Don Demidoff, being the president of the League for the Renaissance of Moral Standing, have come to a conclusion about the torture of detainees in the high security prison in Codlea. For evidence Father Don Demidoff has brought forward dozens of letters, in which the prisoners ? who based on a protocol agreed with the administration of the prison had been provided with pastoral care by Father Don Demidoff in the past ? complained about the inhuman treatment ? permanent bashing, no access to the according medical treatments and especially the isolation of prisoners in the section V. Some of the prisoners complained that they "are tied up with chains and handcuffs at the iron beds, that they are brutally bludgeoned, remorselessly beaten, humiliated, cursed as gypsies and Magyars, that the food contains dirt and remains of animals". The administration of the prison and the prosecutors? office did not give an answer to these repeated complaints. As a consequence Father Don Demidoff has filed a penal complaint against the administration of the prison ? director Marian Dumitrache, vice director Valentin Parpala, psychologist Claudiu Staer and further officials, which had been responsible for the supervision of the prisoners. The complaint had been filed midyear 2007- for evidence of his complaint Father Don Demidoff has brought forward letters and particularly statements of the prisoners, reporting the inhuman treatment. The hearings and investigations had been performed very slowly ? the administration of the prison had not always made available the prisoners to be heared, several assumptions show that the prisoners had been silenced by threats and by transferring some of them to other prisons. In last December the prosecutors in Brasov had come to the conclusion that a criminal prosecution is not necessary, this being communicated by the delivery of a relating order on January 12, 2007. Father Don Demidoff was not positive about the conclusion of the prosecutor?s office at the court of appeals in Brasov that a criminal prosecution is not necessary and has filed a complaint against this decision. "As a reason for this decision the order states the declarations of the prisoners, communicating that those, who have complained about serious deeds, have not brought forward evidences for the confirmation of the responsibility of the indicated persons. Therewith the threats and the permanent distrust in the prisons and the impossibility of the direct delivery of evidences by the victims are ignored. According to their duty the prosecutors must actively take part in deciding about all circumstances and elements serving for the establishment of the truth by the means of hearings of witnesses, confrontation and statements of the defendants. "In this case the defendants have not been heard", Father Don Demidoff declares in the complaint delivered to the General state prosecutor. Father Don Demidoff also quotes the statements of the prisoners towards the public prosecutors, confirming the torture. Of course the prosecutors are not willing to verify these statements in the prison of Codlea directly. Mistrust is growing, as this midmonth a summons had been delivered to Father Don Demidoff ? Don Demidoff is sued by Ionel Moisii, a prisoner of Codlea. The justification of this claim is not exactly evident, as the copies attached to the summons are hardly readable. But it can be stated that the prisoner Ionel Moisii has initiated a claim due to incitement of violence, blackmailing and manipulating of prisoners to give false statements against Don Demidoff. This prisoner declares that Father Don Demidoff has got the statements of the prisoners, who had been heard by the prosecutor?s office, by blackmailing ? so that this prisoner defends the director of the prison of Codlea and the other executives by stating that they have been accused wrongly. In a hardly readable form the prisoner indicates several reasons and matters, though in every document ? even in the summons for Father Don Demidoff ? his name is quoted wrongly ? Dan Demidoff instead of Don Demidoff. These statements are not truthful ? Father Don Demidoff fights for the improvement of conditions of detention, for the termination of torture, although in this connection one prisoner does not agree and defends those, who are accused of torture and inhuman treatment. Father Don Demidoff is not intimidated by such attempts ? last year he has informed the European Parliament about the torture in the prison of Codlea and in other Romanian prisons. The head of the plenary assembly has confirmed the receipt of the claim of Don Demidoff, recorded under the number 437/2007 in the general register, and has presented it to the petition committee, which will decide about the admissibility of the complaint. "These specific attempts at intimidation typically for a communist state have not impressed me. I am going to continue my fight for the termination of torture in the Romanian prisons", Father Don Demidoff declares.