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Cristian Popescu Piedone

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Name  Cristian Piedone

Role  Politician
Cristian Popescu Piedone SURSE Cristian Popescu Piedone a DEMISIONAT
Born  February 15, 1963 (age 52) Bucharest, Romania (1963-02-15)
Political party  Party of Social Democracy in Romania Social Democratic Party National Democratic Bloc Christian Democratic National Peasants' Party Conservative Party Alliance of Liberals and Democrats National Union for the Progress of Romania
Alma mater  University of Petrosani

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Cristian Popescu Piedone (born February 15, 1963) is a Romanian politician who has served as mayor of Bucharest's Sector 4 from 2008 until the November 4, 2015, when he resigned following the Colectiv nightclub fire and the subsequent 2015 Romanian protests.

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Early life

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Before the Romanian Revolution, Cristian Popescu was the head waiter at a seaside restaurant. In 1990, he opened his own restaurant named Restaurantul Ciocârlia ("Nightingale Restaurant") on the Dâmbovița River quay in Bucharest. Popescu joined the Party of Social Democracy in Romania in 1994 after the youth wing of the party started congregating in his restaurant.

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He began studying at the Dimitre Gusti High School in Bucharest in 1991, at the age of 28, graduating four years later. He later continued his studies at the University of Petroșani, which he graduated in 2002.

Local councilor

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In 2000, he was elected member of the General Council of Bucharest on the lists of the Social Democratic Party, becoming also an inspector at the Sector 6 city hall. In 2004, he was elected councilor for Bucharest's Sector 6.

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He quit the Social-Democrats and joined the Christian Democratic National Peasants' Party, then the National Democratic Bloc, a small party created by trade unionists of Blocul Național Sindical ("National Union Bloc") and allied with Greater Romania Party and finally joined the Conservative party.

Cristian Popescu Piedone Fostul primar al sectorului 4 Cristian Popescu Piedone i

Following the election of Bucharest Mayor Traian Băsescu as President of Romania, a by-election was held to replace the now-vacant function. Popescu was a candidate representing the National Democratic Bloc, gaining 37,985 votes, or 8,71%.

In 2007, obtained his driving license in Pitești, Argeș County after temporarily moving his domicile to Priboieni. Following a fraud and corruption investigation, the authorities decided to cancel his driving license, together with hundreds other licenses. Journalists noted that moving his domicile without resigning from his function as member of the local council is illegal. Additionally, while a resident in Priboieni, he registered a Cadillac in Bucharest, for which he was criminally prosecuted.

Popescu Piedone founded an NGO named Asociația pentru Protecția Cetățeanului ("Association for the Protection of the Citizen"), which drew criticism after receiving donations from the State Lottery, a state-owned company managed by a fellow Conservative Party member.

His assumed moniker, Piedone (Italian for "big foot") is taken from the Spaghetti Western character by that name starred by Bud Spencer. In 2006, Popescu legally changed his name to include Piedone.

Mayor of Bucharest's sector 4

The Conservative Party's candidate for mayor in the 2008 local election in Sector 4, Popescu Piedone won the elections against PD-L's Radu Silaghi.

Before the Romanian local election, 2012, Popescu negotiated with the National Union for the Progress of Romania (UNPR) to be their candidate. He resigned in September 2011 from being the prime-vice-president of the Conservative Party and president of its Bucharest branch. In October 2012, he announced that he would run on the Conservative Party ticket, but the following month, he announced that he would run on the UNPR side. Romanian MP Elena Udrea announced that Popescu Piedone would be the coordinator of the UNPR - PD-L campaign. A few months later, in March 2012, Piedone decided to run on a Social Liberal Union ticket.

Popescu Piedone was reelected in the June 2012 elections, gaining 80.36% of the votes in Sector 4.

His Conservative Party merged with the Liberal Reformist Party to form the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats (ALDE) and in July 2015, Popescu Piedone resigned ALDE, joining UNPR, as he claimed he has "a beautiful friendship" with its leader, Gabriel Oprea. In September 2015, he announced that he would run again for Sector 4 mayorship from the National Union for the Progress of Romania.

A criminal complaint by the Save Bucharest Association related to the demolition of a building belonging to a heritage protected area was admitted by the Sector 4 court, with Piedone being officially criminally charged in August 2015. The case involves a building belonging to the Samurcășești Monastery which was demolished in order to be replaced a 5-floors building in association with a real estate investor.

On October 30, 2015, the Colectiv nightclub fire killed dozens of people. Since the nightclub had been authorized by mayor Piedone, protesters demanded his resignation, which he did on November 4.

The National Anticorruption Directorate began investigating the case and they arrested Popescu Piedone on November 6 on charges of abuse of power for not respecting the fire safety laws when authorizing the nightclub.

In April 2016, Popescu Piedone registered as a candidate for the Sector 4 mayorship in the 2016 local elections, but his candidacy was contested by an association of the victims in the Colective nightclub fire. The judges of Bucharest Tribunal decided to disallow him from becoming a candidate.

References

Cristian Popescu Piedone Wikipedia


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