Bulgaria's Interior Fights Organized Crime by Outsourcing Investigations - Minister

Domestic | December 21, 2011, Wednesday // 12:13|  views

Bulgarian Interior Minister Tsvetan Tsvetanov has once again complained of the sluggish justice process in the country. Photo by BGNES

Bulgarian Interior Minister Tsvetan Tsvetanov has taken advantage of yet another opportunity to level criticism at the judiciary.

In a Wednesday interview for TV7, he claimed that, crippled by the cumbersome justice process in Bulgaria, the Interior had been forced to combat organized crime by sending information to partnering services abroad so that they could catch and convict criminals.

"In many cases we have had our hands tied by the cumbersome and sluggish justice process and we have sent anticipatory information to our partners in Europe and the rest of the world. This will allow for people from the criminal contingent to be caught and convicted in other parts of the world because there they engage in the same activities as in Bulgaria," Tsvetanov said.

To prove his point, he mentioned a case with Bulgarians involved in girl trafficking in Austria, about which Bulgaria had given a tip-off in February, with the criminals caught in August and handed effective sentences in November.

Tsvetanov claimed that organized crime trials, such as "Octopus", the Impudent, and "the Killers", named after the specialized police operations, were a test for the Bulgarian justice system.

He noted that the country was still plagued by "remnants of the landmark heavy organized crime", but gave his assurances that the Interior was working actively to bring such activity into the light and to control conventional household crime.

Emphasizing the substantial efforts invested in apprehending the car arsonists that hit Sofia and a number of other cities in the past month, Tsvetanov suggested that the car burnings could be part of attempt to discredit the Interior.

He voiced hopes that the spate of car arsons would be eliminated through the help of civil society.

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Tags: Interior Minister Tsvetan Tsvetanov, slow justice process, organized crime, Octopus, The Impudent, The Killers, judiciary


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