Information transmitted to the Government
469. By letter dated 26 August 1993 the Special Rapporteur informed the Government that he had received reports alleging that police officers resorted to torture and ill-treatment of detainees frequently in order to force them to make confessions which were later used as evidence in the courts. The following individual cases were reported:
(a) Stefan Tasnadi, an ethnic Hungarian from Sic commune, Cluj county, was arrested on 25 August 1992. While being taken to the police station in the town of Gherla, Cluj county, Mr. Tasnadi was allegedly beaten with a rubber truncheon and a loaded weapon. Upon arrival, he was beaten on the face, neck and hands with truncheons and fists. According to a medical certificate issued after his release, he received wounds requiring five to six days' medical attention. Despite the filing of an official complaint to the Military Procurator's Office, no investigation was reported to have taken place.
(b) Mihai Poteras was arrested at the end of February 1993 in the village of Tudora-Botosani on suspicion of theft and taken to the police station in Pascani, where he was allegedly beaten savagely for five days. After his release he was examined by a forensic expert in Bucharest and later admitted to the St. Spiridon hospital in Iasi for medical care.
(c) Doru Marian Beldie, aged 19, was arrested in Bucharest on 16 June 1992 on suspicion of homosexual activity. He was taken to the 17th District police station where he was reportedly beaten with truncheons on the palms of the hands and soles of the feet for several hours.
(d) Marcel Brosca, a 20-year-old student, was arrested on 7 March 1992 in Tecuci and taken to the police office in the railway station, where he was reportedly beaten for three or four hours. He was allegedly pulled by the hair; the sides and the back of his head were beaten against the table and the wall until blood poured over his face; his arms were twisted and he was beaten on the soles of his feet with truncheons. He finally signed a statement indicating that he had forced a minor to have homosexual relations with him.
470. The Special Rapporteur was also informed of an incident involving ill-treatment of members of the Roma community in Bucharest on 3 July 1992. According to the reports, between 40 and 50 soldiers belonging to military police unit UM 02180 came to the market at Piata Rahova armed with rubber truncheons, chair legs and pickaxes and proceeded to attack indiscriminately Roma people who were at the market. As a result, several persons were seriously injured, among them Mircea Gheorghe. He was allegedly hit with a stick on the head, which made him lose consciousness; the soldiers, however, continued to beat him despite the bleeding from his head. The Institute of Legal Medicine of Bucharest stated three hours later that Mircea Gheorghe had suffered a 4 cm-long lesion on his head and multiple, large contusions on the right shoulder, chest, thigh and calf.
471. The Special Rapporteur also received a report on the prison conditions prevailing in the country. They referred to the continuing use of methods of restraint such as handcuffs and leg irons for very long periods as a form of punishment, or the frequent use of isolation cells as a means of punishment for relatively minor breaches of the internal prison rules.