Former Judge, Top Civil Servant Ordered Bulgaria Businessman's Murder
Bulgaria's police have arrested one of the suspects for ordering the murder of Stoyan Stoyanov, a businessman whose body was found after he had been missing for 1,5 years.
The suspect, Galiv Kostov, was detained on Friday, Bulgaria’s Interior Minister, Tsvetan Tsvetanov, announced Sunday. Kostov is a former judge in the Varna District Court, he later worked as an attorney, and is currently a private officer of the court. Kostov has been detained for 72 hours, and on Monday he will be placed under permanent arrest at the request of the Burgas District Prosecutor’s Office.
The second suspect for ordering Stoyan Stoyanov’s murder is Svetlin Mihaylov, a former Director of the State Receivables Collection Agency in 2002-2006. Mihaylov is not currently in Bulgaria, that is why the Ministry of Interior has issued an European Arrest Warrant.
Minister Tsvetanov announced that the murder of the businessman from the city of Burgas Stoyan Stoyanov was organized because of a disputed real estate property of 2,5 decares on the Black Sea coast close to the city of Burgas.
Tsvetanov said initially the plotters decided to kill Stoyanov in front of his house. However, the first group they hired to carry out the murder failed, and they hired a second group.
Thus, the night of March 6, 2008, Stoyan Stoyanov was kidnapped in front of his home, and was taken to the resort of Obzor. There he and the kidnappers had a conversation with him, and then killed him.
According to the police, Kostov and Mihaylov wanted to sell Stoyanov the coastal property in question, and initially Stoyanov was eager to buy it at any price. Later, however, he gave up because they demanded too much money. When Stoyanov was kidnapped, they tried to make him buy the property, and had him killed when he refused. Minister Tsvetanov said the whole crime took about two hours.
After the meeting in Obzor, the executors of murder took the businessman to a forest in the Dyulinski Pass, and shot him in the head, and they buried his corpse. The corpse was discovered by the police on Thursday thanks to witnesses’ testimonies.
According to the evidence of the police, the former judge Galin Kostov, and the former top civil servant Stanislav Mihaylov hired two men – Stoyan Kolev and Neno Atanasov – to organize the kidnapping and murder of the 36-year-old businessman. Kolev and Atanasov were detained in Burgas at the beginning of July 2009, and have been kept in the arrest ever since.
The two organizers in turn hired two other men to carry out the kidnapping and murder – Manol Hadzhiev, and another man who is currently known to the police only under the name “Vesko”.
Manol Hadzhiev was the one who physically murdered Stoyan Stoyanov. However, Hadzhiev was found killed in Varna in August 2008. According to the police he and Vesko were supposed to get EUR 30 000 each for killing Stoyanov but the payment was delayed, and Manol Hadzhiev started seeking his money, and was killed as a result. The police are still looking for Vesko as his identity is still unknown.
The organizers Kolev and Atanasov were detained on July 7, 2009, just a day before the investigation of Stoyanov’s murder was about to expire. Shortly after that the Burgas Prosecutor Angel Angelov said those who ordered Stoyanov dead were competitors of his firm Graniti.
The 36-year-old Stoyan Stoyanov is a widower with an 8-year-old son. He was expecting a baby with his girlfriend when he was kidnapped.
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