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Brother of Romania's former president sentenced to 4 years in prison for influence-peddling

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BUCHAREST, Romania — A court has sentenced the brother of Romania's former president to four years in prison on charges of influence-peddling, ruling that he took a bribe from a convict in return for promising to secure his early release.

The court in Constantan sentenced Mircea Basescu on Friday. Marian Capatana, a politician, was sentenced to three years in the case. The ruling can be appealed.

Basescu, the brother of Traian Basescu, who was president from 2004 to 2014, was convicted of taking a 250,000-euro ($275,000) bribe via Capatana from the son of a convict imprisoned for attempted murder, promising him he could get his sentence reduced.

Mircea Basescu denies wrongdoing, and plans to appeal.

The court ordered the sum of 265,000 euros ($290,000) be confiscated from Basescu and Capatana.

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