Bulgarian Conservatives Accuse Top GERB Functionary of CorruptionDomestic | October 27, 2010, Wednesday // 13:29| views
The Chair of the Sofia municipal council, Andrey Ivanov, from the ruling GERB, is accused by the Conservatives of an illegal property scam for BGN millions. Photo by Sofia Photo Agency
Bulgarian conservative leader, Yane Yanev, requested Wednesday from the Parliamentary Anti-Corruption Committee to probe the Chair of the Sofia municipal council, Andrey Ivanov.
The leader of the Order, Law and Justice (RZS) party requested the probe on the grounds Ivanov, who is from the ruling center-right Citizens for European Development of Bulgaria (GERB) party, took part in a large-scale real estate scam.
According to Yanev, the top municipal councilman had acquired 43 properties over the course of several years all while working as policeman and a tax agent.
RZS say the market value of the properties is BGN 10 M. They claim Ivanov has been provided cover-up and protection from Interior Minister, Tsvetan Tsvetanov, who had also been involved in the scam of transferring properties to third parties. The real estate in question included houses, apartments, stores, bingo facilities and currency exchange bureaus.
RZS vowed to hold yet another briefing on Friday.
Yanev also announced that one of the main witnesses of Tsvetanov's illegal activities, money laundering in particular, Asen Urmanov, who was said to be hiding abroad over safety concerns, is arriving in Sofia Wednesday. RZS will meet him at the airport to provide legal protection.
Also on Wednesday the conservative leader demanded a hearing of Tsvetanov over the detention of a reporter and a driver of the Bulgarian paper Galeriya when the two attempted to do a research on properties of the Interior Minister in the village of Shuma. The proposal was rejected by the Members of Parliament.
RZS launched a series of attacks against Tsvetanov as soon as the former undercover agent of Bulgaria's State Agency for National Security (DANS), and alleged top crime boss, Aleksei Petrov, who was arrested in February, during a special police operation codenamed "Octopus," was released under house arrest.
The Interior Minister denies all allegations and reiterated Wednesday they are all false and simply an attempt to discredit him by throwing sensations to the public.
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