The phenomenon of tax evasion is present all around the globe regardless of whether we look at “civilized” or developing countries, being one of the most widespread and notorious form of financial crimes, responsible for a significant part of the shadow economy.
Although nowadays there are more and more situations in which legal entities are called to criminal responsibility for a wide range of offences, the criminal liability of a legal entity remains an incomplete and insufficiently regulated institution, which is why the current reality has known numerous practical inconveniences.
Like any other state in the world, Romania has been confronted in recent months and is still confronting with the atrocity of the pandemic caused by the Coronavirus COVID-19. Since the outburst of the rapidly spreading virus, all resources available were mobilized to effectively contain it and to repair the economic and social damage brought by the pandemic.
According to Art. 44 of Regulation (EU) 2016/679 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 27 April 2016 on the protection of natural persons with regard to the processing of personal data and on the free movement of such data, and repealing Directive 95/46/EC (General Data Protection Regulation), ˝Any transfer of personal data which are undergoing processing or are intended for processing after transfer to a third country or to an international organization shall take place only if, subject to the other provisions of this Regulation, the conditions laid down in this Chapter are complied with by the controller and processor, including for onward transfers of personal data from the third country or an international organization to another third country or to another international organization.˶
In the context of the significant inflation of laws and administrative regulations in Romania, many of them representing or deriving from European Union (“EU”) normative acts, one important risk to be considered by foreign investors should be that the legislation process that regulates the permitting process is constantly modified. Moreover, most administrative permits, such as, for example, environmental permits or operating licences, are valid only for a limited period. Thus, the necessity to renew the permits and licences after important investments have already been made by the investors may represent a real challenge.
Nowadays, in the Romanian judicial practice the proceedings in which, apart from the criminal prosecution of natural persons for the perpetration of criminal offences, criminal liability of legal persons (various companies, smaller or larger, producers of goods, service providers or operators, etc.) is also pursued, have got to become more and more often.
At the European Community level there have been numerous regulations related to asset freezing and confiscation, the most recent being Directive 2014/42/EU of the European Parliament and of The Council on the freezing and confiscation of instrumentalities and proceeds of crime in the European Union (the “Directive”).
The implementation of the EU’s fourth money laundering directive (2015/849/EU, or MLD4) is a subject of significant interest in Romania, as the process of adopting a new Money Laundering Bill (MLB) in line with the provisions of the MLD4 to replace the current Money Laundering Act is in full progress.