Brazil-Jailed Bulgarian Champ Pins Hopes on Mysterious Photographer
A mysterious photographer may turn out to play a crucial role in the expected trial against former Olympic weightlifting champion Galabin Boevski, who was detained at the end of October in Brazil and accused of carrying nine kilos of cocaine in his luggage.
The defense is trying to contact the photographer, who was in Sao Paulo to cover the table tennis tournament, in the hope that he will confirm Boevski purchased the ill-fated suitcases in Brazil.
Ever since his arrest Boevski has claimed that he bought the brand new suitcases from a shop in Sao Paulo and did not know about the cocaine.
Boevski's wife Krassimira left this week on her second trip to Sao Paulo to see her husband, bring him Christmas presents and important documents to prove he has not commit any crimes so far and is not likely to hide if extradited to Bulgaria.
Boevski's wife, his lawyer Ivaylo Dermendzhiev and some of the local media have voiced concerns that Brazilian authorities treat the Bulgarian as if he was caught drink-driving - his case is closed and there is nothing more to investigate.
Dermendzhiev is determined to press for Boevski's extradition and eventual trial in Bulgaria, citing the International Convention on Psychotropic Substances, which the two countries have signed and which has supremacy over state laws.
The lawyer's statement clashes with the opinion of Bulgarian high-ranking officials, who have ruled out the extradition of Galabin Boevski to his home country, saying there is no prisoner transfer agreement between Bulgaria and Brazil.
There is still no indictment against Boevski, who claim he is not guilty.
The defense will demand that he is released on bail and accommodated at the apartment of a Bulgarian lady in Sao Paulo, who has offered to rent out one of the rooms to the former champion.
If found guilty no matter whether in Bulgaria or Brazil, Boevski could face up to 15 years in prison.
The 36-year-old Boevski won the gold medal at the 2000 Sydney Olympics in the 152-pound category. He was banned for eight years by the International Weightlifting Federation for doping in 2004.