Gagauzia governor accused of using Russian funds for political gain in Moldova

Yevhenia Hutsul
Yevhenia Hutsul

The Governor of Gagauzia, Evgenia Hutsul, and a senior official from Moldova's Shor party are set to face trial in Chisinau, Moldova's capital, NewsMaker reported on April 24.

According to the Anti-Corruption Prosecutor's Office of Moldova, Hutsul, serving as the secretary of the Shor party, allegedly imported money daily from Russia from 2019 to 2022, using these funds to support the party's political activities.

According to NewsMaker, Prosecutor's Office accuses Hucul of knowingly receiving money from organized criminal group to finance party's activities - almost 42.5 million lei($2.34 million).

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The Prosecutor's Office also alleged that Hutsul's accomplice, who managed the party’s main office in Chisinau, received money from the same criminal group between October and November 2022. These funds were reportedly used for organizing protests and compensating party members.

The defendants could face up to seven years in prison and a prohibition from holding certain positions or engaging in specific activities for up to five years. Despite the charges, Hutsul has stated they will not plead guilty, according to NewsMaker.

Hutsul previously won the bashkan elections in Gagauzia in 2023 with 52.39% of the vote.

Following the election, the Moldovan Anti-Corruption Center seized voter lists in the autonomous region as part of an investigation into illegal political financing and voter bribery, NewsMaker reports.

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In November 2024, Alexandru Mustiace, the head of Moldova's Information and Security Service (SIS), disclosed that Russia had expended over 90 million lei ($4.99 million) in the past two months to sway local election outcomes in Moldova.

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Read the original article on The New Voice of Ukraine