Bulgaria’s former Agriculture Minister Naydenov faces corruption charges
Bulgaria’s former-Agriculture Minister Miroslav Naydenov will stand trial for corruption and bribery, the Sofia Prosecutor’s Office announced, March 26.
“Naydenov has been charged with bribe-offering and malfeasance in office,” Bulgarian news agency novinite.com wrote.
Naydenov, who filled the post of Agriculture Minister in Boyko Borisov’s recently disgraced Cabinet between 2009-2013, allegedly offered a bribe of BGN 200,000 to the Director of the State Agriculture Fund, Svetoslav Simeonov, in October 2010. The bribe was in exchange for favoring two companies for an EU sponsored food program for the underprivileged.
He is also accused of coercing Simeonov to carry out an order against his will, and of further abuses of office.
“Naydenov insists he has been charged in a case that ‘simmered’ in the prosecution’s office for three and half years in awaiting the most favorable moment to attack him,” novinite.com reported.
He insists that the Bulgarian Socialist Party is behind the whole case, and that this will be an opportune moment to clear his name.
The scandal erupted in a country, which saw the resignation of the Borisov-led Cabinet in February of this year, following many nationwide demonstrations and protests against its perceived incompetence in the running of the country.
Bulgaria is set to hold early elections on May 12. Some commentators have indicated that this latest scandal is purely a media tool used by the socialists to discredit the GERB party ahead of elections.