Illnesses Still Hinder Bulgaria's 'Baretata' Top Criminal Case

Crime | March 8, 2011, Tuesday // 11:37|  views

Zlatomir Ivanov AKA Baretata (c), believed to be one of the top, still living, Bulgarian underworld figures, enters the court Tuesday. Photo by BGNES

The Sofia City Court postponed Tuesday the case against alleged Bulgarian top crime boss, Zlatomir Ivanov aka Baretata (The Beret, The Barret) and 20 other defendants.

The reason for the latest delay was the illness of one of the defendants, Borislav Sekulov, who presented a doctor's note through his lawyer.

It was reported just a day ago that the offices of Sekulov's defense attorney, Tsvetelina Nikolova, have been broken in. The defendant announced the news himself in the courtroom, saying documents related to his case have disappeared.

Nikolova, who missed the Monday session, appeared before the magistrates Tuesday and informed she still did not know what exact documents are missing.

The case was rescheduled for April 4, 2011

The trial against Baretata began in May 2010 only to start from scratch at the end of the year, after one of the jurors was charged with child pornography in November. Petar Georgiev was detained October 22 during a special police operation codenamed "Pedophiles."

All 107 witnesses and 52 exerts are being questioned all over again.

Zlatomir Ivanov, a heavily tattooed man in his late 30s, is charged with being the ringleader of an organized crime group dealing with illegal drug trafficking and with first-degree murder for the killing of Stefan Ivanov aka Alf, committed in a way that endangered the life of many people. The shooting happened in 2007 in a disco bar in the western city of Pernik.

Baretata is believed to be one of the top, still living, Bulgarian underworld figures.

In October, the Sofia Court of Appeals released him under house arrest after he complained about stress and a urinary infection following surgery.

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Tags: Zlatomir Ivanov, the Barret, crime boss, juror, Petar Georgiev, child pornography, Sofia City Court, The Beret, Baretata, ring leader, illegal drug trafficking, first-degree murder


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