Second judge recusal from controversial Bulgarian bankruptcy trial – reports

The second judge assigned to preside over a sensitive bankruptcy trial, which has re-ignited debate about the state of Bulgaria’s judiciary, has recused himself from the proceedings, reports in Bulgarian media said on December 29.

Plamen Kolev, who was assigned the case last week after Roumyana Chenalova recused herself, put in his recusal paperwork on December 29, the reports said, citing court records.

Kolev said that the public controversy surrounding the case – involving bankruptcy proceedings against two Bulgarian subsidiaries of a French firm – would not influence his ruling, but said that he wanted to avoid any suspicion of subjectivity on the matter, specialist judiciary news website reported.

Chenalova recused herself following the public controversy, sparked by French ambassador Xavier Lapeyre de Cabanes’ statement earlier in December, when he highlighted the bankruptcy case and spoke of “rotten apples” in the Bulgarian judiciary.

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(Photo: Jason Morisson/