The Military District Prosecutor’s Office – Sofia has been conducting pre-trial proceedings in connection with offences by senior officers at the Defence Ministry’s Military Intelligence Service that led to unauthorised access to classified information, the Prosecutor’s Office said on July 8.
Charges had been laid against the current and former heads of Military Intelligence, the statement said.
The investigation was started after an inspection by the State Agency for National Security and reports sent by the agency to the Prosecutor-General.
There was evidence between April 1 2016 and May 1 2019, permission was granted to 504 individuals to access secret and top-secret classified information in violation of the law.
The authorisations were issued by an information security officer at the Military Intelligence service, rather than by the competent authority, the head of the service, the statement said.
The same authorisations, issued by an authority not allowed to do so, led to the issuing of certificate for access to Nato and EU classified information by the State Commission for Information Security.
The Prosecutor’s Office statement said that during this time, the two successive heads of the Military Intelligence service, both holding the rank of Brigadier-General, had failed in their duties under the Military Intelligence Act regarding access to classified information.
Criminal charges had been laid against both. As a custody measure, each was required to regularly sign an official register.
On May 31, an application was lodged to temporarily restrict the head of the service’s access to classified information.
In the course of the investigation, 25 witnesses were interviewed and technical expertise was ordered.
The investigation also found evidence of misappropriation of funds and breaches of the Public Procurement Act by the Military Intelligence service. The Military Prosecutor’s Office had ordered a financial inspection, the results of which were expected, the statement said.