Bulgarian Council Refuses to Award Prosecutors on Key Cases

Society | February 24, 2011, Thursday // 12:45|  views

The members of the Bulgarian Supreme Judicial Council (VSS) have refused to award four prosecutors who worked on key cases. Photo by BGNES

Bulgaria's Supreme Judicial Council (VSS) has rejected the proposal of Sofia City prosecutor Nikolay Kokinov for awarding four of his subordinates, who had worked on key trials.

Kokinov has proposed prosecutors Roman Vasilev, Bozhidar Dzhambazov, Margarita Nemska and Neli Zlatkova to be awarded with a diploma for their good work on two of the key trials in Bulgaria, which resulted in effective sentences and which were noted in the latest report by Brussels.

Vasilev and Dzhambazov were prosecutors in the trial against Alexander Tomov, former president of the CSKA Sofia football club and former CEO of the Kremikovtzi steel plant, who was sentenced to nine years in jail for document fraud and large-scale embezzlement while he was in the management of the now bankrupt steel mill.

Nemska and Zlatkova were leading the trial against Maria Murgina, the former Director of the Bulgarian National Revenue Agency. She was sentenced to four years behind bars over abuse of power.

"I do not understand the reason for awarding these prosecutors. What work have they done besides the ordinary work of every magistrate?," asked Kapka Kostova, VSS member.

She also expressed concern that Vasilev should not be awarded months after he was sanctioned for inappropriate behavior during the arrest of former Defense Minister Nikolay Tsonev.

However, Bulgaria's Chief Prosecuto, Boris Velchev, did not agree that someone who had been punished for one thing cannot be awarded for a different thing.

"But at the same time I share Kostova's concerns. I understand the Sofia City prosecutor who wants to encourage the efforts for giving effective sentences, but I think that they should first come into force," Velchev said.

The Chair of the Supreme Judicial Council, Lazar Gruev, advised Kokinov to not focus only on prosecutors who work on cases of public interest, but also on others who are outside of the media spotlight.

The VSS concluded that the Sofia City prosecutor should either withdraw his proposal for awarding Vasilev, Dzhambazov, Nemska and Zlatkova, or should submit it again with more clear and detailed motives.

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Tags: Supreme Judicial Council, VSS, Nikolay Kokinov, Roman Vasilev, Bozhidar Dzhambazov, Margarita Nemska, Neli Zlatkova, Alexander Tomov, Kremikovtzi, Maria Murgina, Boris Velchev


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