Romania's constitutional court cancels corona fines
Romania's highest court ruled on Wednesday that fines of up to 4,166 euros for violations of corona restrictions were unconstitutional. The average monthly income in Romania is around 1,100 euros. The country's law enforcement bodies reportedly issued more than 300,000 fines totalling 120 million euros. Is the ruling fair?
A ruling that saves many citizens
The Baricada blog breathes a sigh of relief:
“More than a million Romanians have been furloughed and at least 250,000 people have lost their jobs. Those who are working are coping with the crisis because they have a secure income. But others are facing an extremely precarious situation and suffering from disorientation and fear. Frustration could spread among the people if the state and politicians fail to offer them support and treat them with respect. The decision of the Constitutional Court will save the Romanian people from having to pay 120 million euros in fines. ... The [national liberal] PNL government has no choice but to show empathy with the people if it wants to remain in power after the local and parliamentary elections in the autumn.”
Ruling makes protecting people harder
Republica.ro is baffled by the interference of the constitutional court:
“The fines are high to make people think twice about violating laws that are there to protect lives. When people pay the fine immediately they only have to pay half the amount. If they disagree with the fines imposed by the police, they can fight them in court. So why is the constitutional court sticking its nose in? The ruling will only make more people poke fun at the police on corona duty. They will be very wary about stopping people and sanctioning them now. The gangster gangs will tighten their grip on the streets now that the constitutional court has turned out to be their best buddy.”