Bulgaria's Supreme Council Fires Busted Top Judge

Society | April 14, 2011, Thursday // 16:32|  views

Atanas Valkov, Chair of the Burgas Administrative Court, is escorted by police to the courtroom. Photo by BGNES

Bulgaria's Supreme Judicial Council, VSS, fired Thursday the Chair of the Burgas Administrative Court, Atanas Valkov.

The Burgas magistrate is under arrest on money laundering charges.

On Tuesday, the Sofia Appellate Court left Valkov under permanent detention, despite his request to be released on house arrest on the grounds the latter measure has the same result and the difference is only in the level of isolation.

The defense team asked for the case to be dismissed over serious procedural violations, explaining the magistrate has immunity and cannot be tried before this immunity is lifted.

On April 3, the lower instance, the Sofia City Court, also ruled to leave Valkov in jail.

On April 1, Valkov and his mother, Ruska, 78, were indicted for money laundering and document fraud, after being detained one day earlier during an attempt to sell a property in the beach town of Nessebar. The magistrate had asked EUR 2.2 B for the lot, which was acquired by Ruska with forged documents. The people, listed as heirs, who, allegedly, sold her the property, were not even aware they owned it.

On Thursday, VSS fired another judge – Slavcho Petkov from the Veliko Tarnovo Court over accusations he had asked a defendant for a bribe. The case is under investigation.

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Tags: document fraud, money laundering, Chair, Burgas, magistrate, arrest, police, Administrative Court, Atanas Valkov, Burgas Regional Court, Sofia City Court, Sofia Appellate Court, immunity, VSS


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