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România Liberâ - Romania | Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Romanians love corrupt officials

The Romanian parliamentarian and owner of the record championship winning football club Steaua Bukarest, Gigi Becali, was sentenced to three years in prison on Monday by the country's High Court. He was found guilty of defrauding the government of just under 900,000 US dollars in a land swap in the 1990s. For the conservative daily România Liberă it's no wonder that Becali is still hugely popular in the country: "Why should it surprise us that Becali could do just as he pleased in this country? After all, he fulfils all the criteria for being loved by the majority: he's got money (and he stole it from the state - in Romania that's considered clever). He administers his own form of justice (an army of bodyguards does this for him). ... He gives charity to the poor and - very important: he has built churches. Is that not the Romanian ideal? Yes, it is! ... And soon someone else will conquer the hearts of the people and take Becali's place. Because we have an inexhaustible reserve of this kind of people."

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