Bulgarian judge barred from US because of alleged corruption declines to comment – reports

Andon Mitalov, the Bulgarian Specialized Criminal Court judge barred from entering the United States because of what the State Department has alleged to be involvement in “significant corruption” has declined to speak to the media and has gone on sick leave.

Bulgaria media 24 Chassa and Bulgarian National Television both reached Mitalov by phone, but he declined to comment.

Mitalov was the subject of a request last year from the then-Prosecutor General, Sotir Tsatsarov, for an investigation by the Supreme Judicial Council Inspectorate into Mitalov’s ruling allowing Nikolai Malinov, the head of Bulgaria’s Russophile Movement who is facing espionage charges, to travel to Moscow to receive a state honour from Russian President Vladimir Putin.

The SJC Inspectorate said on February 6 that one of its inspectors had carried out a preliminary investigation and had found that there was no reason to initiate a case investigation.

Malinov said in a February 6 television interview that he did not know Mitalov and had not attempted to contact him.

The judicial college of the Supreme Judicial Council called a special meeting on February 6 to discuss the Mitalov case.

The president of the Specialized Criminal Court, Judge Marieta Raikova, said that she and her colleagues were “shocked” by US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s allegations against Mitalov.

(Photo: Jason Morrison)



The Sofia Globe staff

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