Ex Road Infrastructure Fund Head Fully Acquitted by Sofia City Court

Crime | April 30, 2015, Thursday // 12:42|  views

Veselin Georgiev, former Executive Director of the Republican Road Infrastructure Fund, photo by BGNES

The Sofia City Court has fully acquitted the former Executive Director of the Republican Road Infrastructure Fund, Veselin Georgiev, on charges of an offence concerning his professional conduct.

Georgiev faced charges over signing 8 public procurement contracts worth BGN 120 M with three companies, thereby benefitting his two brothers, who were part of the management of these firms.

The contracts were signed in 2007.

In 2008 the scandal caused an EU funds freeze worth EUR 115.4 M under ISPA and EUR 50 M under PHARE, according to reports of Sega daily.

Under Thursday’s ruling of Sofia City Court Judge Petya Krancheva, Georgiev, then- Executive Director of the Republican Road Infrastructure Fund, was not a contractor of the public procurement deals.

According to the ruling, the contractors were the district units of the Fund, whose directors had signed the contracts with the companies.

Krancheva ruled that the fact that Georgiev was not a contractor meant that there had been no violation of the ban stipulated in the Public Procurement Act on the participation of related parties.

The accusation that the EU funds freeze had seriously damaged Bulgaria’s reputation was declared unfounded as the sums under the eight contracts had been paid with money from the state budget and not EU funds.

The prosecuting authority, which had demanded a penalty of 5 years of imprisonment for Georgiev five days ago, made clear that it would most probably appeal the ruling at the Sofia Appellate Court.

The case against Georgiev started in 2009 and the judges changed three times.

Meanwhile, two weeks ago, a second trial against Georgiev was launched over the embezzlement of nearly BGN 100 000 through contracts with 5 companies.

Most of the contracts involved testing public attitudes to the policy of the Fund.

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Tags: Veselin Georgiev, Road Infrastructure Fund, embezzlement, Sofia City Court, Sofia Appellate Court, EU funds freeze, Public Procurement Act, public procurement procedure, ISPA, PHARE


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