Bulgarian Ex Olympic Champion Defense: Boevski Is Innocent

Crime | November 14, 2011, Monday // 12:06|  views

Bulgarian weightlifter and Olympic champion, Galabin Boevski, has been arrested for cocaine posession in Brazil. Photo by BGNES

The defense lawyer of former Bulgarian Olympic weightlifting champion Galabin Boevski, Ivaylo Dermendzhiev, insists his client is innocent on illegal drug trafficking charges.

Boevski was detained at the end of last month at Sao Paolo airport in Brazil and accused of carrying nine kilos of cocaine in his luggage.

Speaking in an a Monday interview for the TV channel bTV, Dermendzhiev presented the story the following way:

Boevski traveled to Brazil with his daughter for a tournament. They were accommodated in a hotel with all other competitors, and each day only went from there to the tournament. When they had a day off, they were taken to a shopping mall to purchase a suitcase since theirs had been damaged during the travel from Bulgaria. Father and daughter purchases three travel bags, which were to be delivered by the store to the hotel. When the delivery arrived, they placed part of their luggage inside and on the next day left on a local flight to Sao Paolo to transfer from there on a flight to Bulgaria. The luggage had to be checked once again in order to be put on an international flight. Two hours later, the two were arrested after the authorities found narcotics in Boevski's bag upon check-in.

The lawyer further insists that the Olympic champions whereabouts were known at all times because he had been accompanied everywhere by the tournament's organizers.

Dermendzhiev says his client and himself have no idea how the cocaine ended in the luggage, stressing it is impossible to do it in a hotel or airport environment because hiding such large amount takes time.

According to the lawyer, it is possible the former competitor was framed and became a "mule" without being aware of it.

"He insists he is innocent and as his counsel, I believe him. We will ask for a check on his phone log – to see who he talked too, who he saw, where he went. This will prove he had no contact with drug dealers. We are further going to call other participants in the tournament, sales people from the store, and hotel staff as witnesses. The bag is also examined by forensic experts to find the exact amount of the drug," Dermendzhiev explained.

The attorney did not rule out the possibility of his client being released on house arrest or on own recognizance, adding official charges will be pressed in 2-3 months, while the trial will start in 6 to 8 months.

This had been Boevski's first trip to South America.

He is currently kept in the prison for foreigners and there is no official information on him being physically abused, but the possibility of it remains, according to Dermendzhiev.

Several days ago, Boevski's lawyer claimed that his client has been abused by prisoners in the Pinheiros jail and must be transferred to another facility.

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