There is strong pressure to keep the Chairman of the Financial Supervision Commission (FSC) Stoyan Mavrodiev in office for another term, the site Mediapool reported, citing several of its sources.
Mavrodiev rose to fame with a bunch of scandals, including having credit cards with inexplicably high limits. A check of Bivol in early 2015 revealed that the FSC Head has declared in 2012 two bank credit cards with limits of 60,000 euro (117,350 levs) and 40,000 levs. After the publication, Mavrodiev lied on air in an interview for Nova TV that he had no such cards and promised to sue of Bivol:
Host: A check of our colleagues from Bivol: Mavrodiev declared credit cards with huge limits – 60,000…
Stoyan Mavrodiev: Look, let’s not water down the subject…
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SM: Of course, this is not true. And I will sue them. I do not have a credit card with a limit of 60,000 euro.
So far, Mavrodiev has not sued us, perhaps because Bivol immediately obtained from the National Audit Office certified paper copies of the originals of all declarations submitted personally and signed by Stoyan Mavrodiev, himself.
They show in black and white that there are two credit cards. One is a card with a limit of 60,000 euro, or the equivalent in levs – 117,350. There is a second card with a limit of 40,000 levs. The total value is the huge for Bulgarian living standards sum of 157,350 levs.
The issuing of a credit card with such high limit raises many other questions. Banking experts, whom Bivol consulted, explained that this is only possible if the customer left a deposit in the same amount. However, Mavrodiev did not mention such a fact and has not declared it.
These circumstances raise strong suspicions of trading influence, abuse of office and taking advantage of entities regulated by Stoyan Mavrodiev, but instead of acting
The Prosecution’s “special unit” remains idle
However, the Editor-in-Chief of the website, Atanas Tchobanov, alerted the Prosecutor’s Office and forced the public prosecution to launch a probe. So far, it is developing in the usual way – dragging on and passing the ball by the Sofia City Prosecutor’s Office, although the case is simple.
The latest status of the case is that information from another authority is expected in order to make a decision. This authority is not specified, but in the summer of last year the file was in the National Security Agency (DANS) where Atanas Tchobanov was summoned for questioning. It is possible that the file is now simmering in the National Revenue Agency (NRA), but the Prosecutor’s Office refused information about any development after Tchobanov filed an express complaint about delays.
The mechanism with endless probes is one of the attributes of the “special unit” of the Prosecutor General at the Sofia City Prosecutor’s Office, where the cases against those in power are handled. The probes are being filed against an unknown perpetrator and then used for blackmail, revealed the investigator from the Sofia Investigation Office, Boyko Atanasov. If the blackmailed person cooperates, the probe is put on hold, if not – it is reopened. In this case, the probe was launched on an external signal, allowing it to be controlled and to hold the prosecution accountable for the delay.
The new Judiciary Act will deprive the backstage rule from this weapon and will limit the probes to three months, although former Justice Minister, Hristo Ivanov, wanted to fully eliminate them.
Mavrodiev – registrar of the offshores of people in power
One of the reasons for keeping Mavrodiev at the post, despite the numerous scandals in which he is involved, including the bankruptcy of Corporate Commercial Bank (CCB) and concealing the ownership of Bulgartabac, is probably the fact that in the past he had a business for the registration of offshore companies, used by people from the underworld. Sources of Bivol, speaking on condition of anonymity, say that high-ranking politicians are among Mavrodiev’s clients.
Stoyan Mavrodiev was one of the summoned witnesses in the case against drug lord Evelyn “Brendo” Banev, and Desislava and Vladimir Dishliev, charged with involvement in an international drug channel in Italy and with money laundering in Sofia. He failed to appear to testify. Another witness in the case explained that Mavrodiev represented companies for the registration of offshores.
“I insist on questioning the witness Mavrodiev because his signature is on documents submitted by offshores, including documents that gave Desislava Dishlieva and Vladimir Dishliev a power of attorney to represent the companies for the bank accounts in Euram bank,” the prosecutor in the case, quoted by Capital daily, said in the courtroom.
In response, Mavrodiev claimed that his signatures were forged. He never explained why he failed to appear and why he lied to the media that he was never summoned.
Another investigation of Bivol revealed that Mavrodiev was close to Rumen “the Pasha” Nikolov, who in turn was close to current second-term Prime Minister, Boyko Borisov, in the early years of the organized crime groups in Bulgaria. Stoyan Mavrodiev bought from “the Pasha” an apartment in Sofia, a check of Bivol showed.
However, the “Panama Papers” leak demonstrated that the secrets of the offshore companies that the FSC Head is carefully concealing are not eternal. It is a matter of time for investigative journalists to get to them. Even the publicly known data gives sufficient grounds to demand Mavrodiev’s resignation. A possible renewal of his mandate will be another demonstration of the arrogance and the impunity of the model “WHO”, which continues to operate flawlessly, even after shady lawmaker and mogul Delyan Peevski (supposedly) left Bulgaria.
And there is one stumbling block, and it is these are credit cards about which it is proven that Mavrodiev told an outrageous lie. The case of the endless prosecutor’s investigation, initiated by Bivol, is emblematic. Bivol will inform in detail the inspectors from the European Commission and the foreign magistrates, who will scrutinize next month the work of the Prosecutor General’s Office, about this case.
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