Europe

Romania leader charged with false statements can go to trial

  • People gather in front of the government building for a demonstration in Bucharest, Romania, Wednesday, Feb. 8, 2017. Romania has seen massive anti-government protests in the week since the center-left government passed an emergency decree that would decriminalize some public corruption. (AP Photo/Darko Bandic)

    People gather in front of the government building for a demonstration in Bucharest, Romania, Wednesday, Feb. 8, 2017. Romania has seen massive anti-government protests in the week since the center-left government passed an emergency decree that would decriminalize some public corruption. (AP Photo/Darko Bandic)  (The Associated Press)

  • Protesters wave flags as they gather outside the government building in Bucharest, Romania, Thursday, Feb. 9, 2017. Romania's justice minister resigned Thursday following mass protests over a law that eases criminal penalties for government officials engaged in corruption. (AP Photo/Darko Bandic)

    Protesters wave flags as they gather outside the government building in Bucharest, Romania, Thursday, Feb. 9, 2017. Romania's justice minister resigned Thursday following mass protests over a law that eases criminal penalties for government officials engaged in corruption. (AP Photo/Darko Bandic)  (The Associated Press)

  • Anti-government protesters light the flashes of their mobile phones outside the government headquarters in Bucharest, Romania, Thursday, Feb. 9, 2017. Romania's justice minister resigned Thursday following mass protests over a law that eases criminal penalties for government officials engaged in corruption.(AP Photo/Vadim Ghirda)

    Anti-government protesters light the flashes of their mobile phones outside the government headquarters in Bucharest, Romania, Thursday, Feb. 9, 2017. Romania's justice minister resigned Thursday following mass protests over a law that eases criminal penalties for government officials engaged in corruption.(AP Photo/Vadim Ghirda)  (The Associated Press)

A top Romanian court says the Senate speaker can stand trial accused of making false statements to protect people in a real estate case.

The High Court of Cassation and Justice on Friday rejected an appeal filed by Calin Popescu Tariceanu, who argued there were insufficient grounds for his trial.

Last year, prosecutors charged Tariceanu with making false statements under oath and hampering the investigation into a suspected fraudulent land restitution case by denying knowledge of connections between a Romanian prince and a politically connected businessman and others.

Romania has seen massive protests this month against a government decree that would have diluted the anti-corruption fight that has targeted top officials.

The government dropped the decree and will now craft a draft law to be approved by Parliament.