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Jurnalul.ro Vechiul site Old site English Version Summit under the shadow of Teo Peter!

Summit under the shadow of Teo Peter!

de Violeta Fotache    |    19 Mar 2008   •   00:00

One wants justice and is treated as if one was begging. Such a shame! It happened to the family of artist Teo Peter, who was simply ignored by the authorities in George Bush’s country.

MOCKERY; The artist’s family ignored today as well

One wants justice and is treated as if one was begging. Such a shame! It happened to the family of artist Teo Peter, who was simply ignored by the authorities in George Bush’s country. The son and the brother of the bass player killed by VanGoethem want the USA to prove they don’t treat Romanians like some citizens in a third world country.


For 19 months, the mockery of the US authorities as far as the victim’s family was concerned continued even after the American justice didn’t punish Teo Peter’s killer in any way. Yesterday, two weeks before the visit of the USA President, George Bush, in Romania on the occasion of the NATO Summit, the request of the Peter family was more than far from being solved.



Initially, the USA offered 11,500 dollars to Teo Peter descendants and the final offer reached 16,500 dollars according to Claudiu and Dorin Peter and their lawyer, John Gurley. “The USA made the first offer in 2005. They offered me 3,500 dollars and 11,500 dollars to the family. We refused. They raised the offer to 16,500 after two months. We refused. They really insulted us. I am extremely furious because they do not respect our statute as NATO ally”, Teo Peter’s son was very disappointed to tell us yesterday.



Teo Peter’s son referred to a similar case in which an English citizen was involved and stated: “The case was treated fairly by the USA Government. We are a family that has been waiting for justice during the past three years and we are yet to get what we asked for. Can you believe that Van Goethem wasn’t sent to prison because they couldn’t prove that my father had been in the cab in the moment of the impact? The American justice didn’t manage things as it should have for this case.” His uncle completed that, in Romania, for a similar case, “the Court gave a sentence of seven years in jail: the Ali Imran case”.  



After the final verdict of the American justice, which shocked Romania, Teo Peter’s family was advised by the American authorities to make an official claim, which refers to a sum of more than 1 million US dollars. They hope that the USA Government will solve the case until the beginning of the summit and added that the sum will be used to create a foundation in the memory of Teo Peter that would help the Romanians.



“We weren’t allowed to have a fair trial here, in Romania. We were forced to take part in this masquerade in the USA that took place behind closed doors with VanGoethem’s mom, who cried. VanGoethem is yet to apologize to the Peter family”

Dorin Peter – the victim’s uncle



“The American justice didn’t manage this case correctly. I am sick of feeling so awkward, to look down. We demand a positive and honorable solution for this. The USA Government solved similar cases with their important allies. Romania is a NATO ally and we want this to be seen in our allies’ behavior.”

Claudiu Peter – the victim’s son



Artist Teo Peter died on the 4th of December in a car accident caused by Sergeant Cristopher VanGoethem in the U.S. Marine Corps. The soldier that served the USA Embassy in Bucharest spent the time before the accident in a well-known club in the capital. The car he drove ran into the cab that was supposed to take Teo Peter home. VanGoethem refused to take any blood tests. He got out of Romania under diplomatic protection, was trialed in the USA by the Martial Court and was forgiven. The verdict shocked Romania. When the Georgian diplomat Gueorgui Makharadze killed and American citizen in a car accident, he remained without immunity and was convicted to 7 years in jail.


• Translated by Sorin Bălan 

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