Romania: no retroactive penalty for lawmakers who hired kin

Romania's parliament says lawmakers can't be prosecuted for hiring close relatives to work in their offices before it became illegal to do so.

The motion was approved Wednesday by 306 lawmakers in the 378-seat Chamber of Deputies, the lower house of parliament. There was one abstention and the others lawmakers were absent.

The lawmakers argued they should not be punished retroactively for a law that came into effect in 2013, making it illegal for lawmakers to employ close relatives to work in their parliamentary offices.

The National Integrity Agency, which investigates conflict of interest by officials, says 32 lawmakers employed a close relative from 2011-2015.