Romania spy chief blasts court ruling banning surveillance

Romania's intelligence chief says a recent court decision that bans his agency from carrying out phone-tapping on behalf of police and prosecutors will harm Romania's national security.

Eduard Hellvig, who heads the Romanian Intelligence Agency, said in a statement Thursday that the ruling would make it illegal to monitor espionage, terrorism, organized crime, cybercrime and corruption. He said the agency would respect the court decision.

The Constitutional Court recently ruled it was unconstitutional for the agency to tap phones in prosecutions because it was "not an organ for criminal investigation."

The anti-corruption prosecutors' office has successfully prosecuted many high-level officials in recent years and uses the agency's sophisticated surveillance technology in some of its prosecutions.

Romania's supreme defense council will discuss the court's decision on Friday.