Bulgaria's PM Suggests Working Group to Regulate Surveillance DevicesDomestic | January 28, 2011, Friday // 15:08| views
Bulgaria's PM Boyko Borisov has suggested that a working group should regulate the use of special surveillance devices. Photo by BGNES
Bulgaria's PM Boyko Borisov has suggested the creation of a working group for regulating the right implementation of the Special Surveillance Devices Act.
The task of the working group would be to establish gaps in the practices for using special surveillance devices, which would violate the constitutional right of Bulgarian citizens.
When necessary, the group will also be able to suggest changes in the rules for better control over the use of special surveillance devices.
Borisov has sent a letter to the Chair of the Supreme Court of Cassations, Lazar Gruev, the chief prosecutor Boris Velchev and the chair of the subcommittee for parliamentary control and supervision of the use of special surveillance devices, Yavor Notev.
In the letter, the prime minister points out that the question for the use and control over special surveillance devices has started to circulate in the society lately.
"It is our duty to create conditions for security of the Bulgarian citizens so that they do not feel threatened if they have not committed a violation of the law," Borisov said.
This is his main reason for suggesting the creation of the working group, which would be under the leadership of the justice minister and which would include representatives of the court, the Prosecutor's Office and the subcommittee to the National Assembly.
The so-called "spy scandal" was triggered by three tapes of discrediting conversations between the Director of the Customs Agency, Vanyo Tanov, and his superiors – Finance Minister Simeon Djankov and Deputy Finance Minister Vladislav Goranov.
The other released tapes of conversations were between Tanov and Bulgaria's PM Boyko Borisov. In one of them, Borisov called Tanov with an order to immediately pull the tax agents out of the factory of the "Ledenika" beer company because its boss, Mihail Mihov, personally complained to the PM.
In the other tapes, Borisov is allegedly heard speaking of the need to restore to work a friend of his at the Sofia airport.
The conversations were stored on USB ports and were revealed by the Bulgarian Galeria weekly, a paper believed to be the mouthpiece of Alexei Petrov, former special agent of the State National Security Agency DANS (currently under house arrest), who has been investigated on organized crime charges since his detention in the much advertised "Operation Octopus" in February 2010.
On Thursday, the Chair of the subcommittee for control over special surveillance devices, Yavor Notev, said that the supervising prosecutor, Plamen Georgiev, neither confirmed, not denied the authenticity of the tapes.
Tsvetelin Yovchev, Head of the Bulgaria's State National Security Agency DANS, has stated that the allegedly tapped phone conversations are manipulated. In his words, those who hope that the recorded conversations are real are up for an unpleasant surprise.
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