Father of Senior Agriculture Fund Employee Buys Luxury Apartment with Money of Unknown Origin

Atije Alieva-Veli is Deputy Director of the State Fund Agriculture (SFA), the body in charge of distributing European Union (EU) funds for agriculture and fifth on the ballot of the party mostly representing the Muslim minority – Movement for Rights and Freedoms, (DPS) for the European Parliament elections. She has not declared any properties in her name or in the name of her husband, and an inquiry in the Property Register shows that there are no such properties. However, her father, Bayryam Aliev, has acquired in 2015 an apartment of 164 square meters plus a garage of 30 square meters in a luxury building in the “Manastirski Livadi” neighborhood in the capital Sofia. The price of these properties is quite advantageous, as they cost only EUR 568 per square meter. At that time, similar apartments in “Manastirski Livadi” cost about EUR 800 per square meter.

However, the most important question is from where Bayryam Aliev did the BGN 215,000 for the acquisition come from since he has never owned companies, held a highly paid job, has not sold properties and has not taken a mortgage loan. Atije’s mother has worked as a teacher in the village Borino, which also does not imply significant earnings. Simple math shows that the family would have to save BGN 500 a month for 40 years to afford such an apartment.

According to Bivol’s sources, Atije Alieva-Veli is using the apartment in “Manastirski Livadi”, while her parents still live in Borino. Such information is missing in the declaration of the Deputy Director of the SFA, although, according to the law, it must be mentioned if it corresponds to the factual situation.

Atije Alieva-Veli’s declarations reveal other quirks as well. Her husband Metin Veli has a construction company with a capital of BGN 2 and a modest net sales revenue of BGN 13,000 in 2013, BGN 8,000 in 2014, and zero in 2015 and 2016. In 2017, Metin Veli suddenly declared income of BGN 195,725. This is difficult to explain because his company has declared net sales revenue of only BGN 56,000 in 2017.

The RDP’s “patron” gave money to his relatives

The Deputy Director of the SFA, who is close to the DPS, deals specifically with the implementation of the Rural Development Program (RDP), which has funded the now-infamous guesthouses of the people in power. She has been in charge of this portfolio since 2011 when she joined the Fund together with Rumen Porozhanov, who became the SFA Director and is currently Bulgarian Minister of Agriculture. It is noted in her CV that she “has experience in reporting progress in the implementation of the Rural Development Program (RDP) measures and in analyzing the gaps and problems of its implementation in coordination with the European Commission”.

In 2013, the highly-qualified expert was appointed Deputy Head of the SFA in charge of the RDP. This means that not only Porozhanov, but she too bears responsibility for the outrages and theft from the program – guesthouses, luxury SUVs and yachts for private use, with which Bulgaria is about to become known all over Europe.

There is, however, evidence that her husband’s relatives also have also taken advantage of the RDP. For example, there is information about a project of the company “Djemile Veli” for a Studio for Professional Photos and Video Services subsidized by BGN 25,596 under one of the most obscure measures – 312 for Local Initiative Groups.

Atije Alieva has sister Shassine, who is also married to a member of the Veli family. His mother is Djemile Veli, owner of the company “Djemile Veli”. This family relationship puts Atije Alieva-Veli, in her capacity of a distributor of EU funds, in an undeclared conflict of interest.

The SFA did not answer the questions to Atije Alieva-Veli by the time of the editorial closure of this article. We asked with what income had her father acquired the apartment in Sofia; whether she is using it and whether she thinks that financing her relative from the RDP does not represent a conflict of interest.

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