50 Guard Sofia Prison Warder in Court

Politics | March 23, 2006, Thursday // 00:00

Sofia prison warder Evgeni Asenov was guarded by 50 of his colleagues Thursday when he entered court in relation with a homosexual orgy footage that featured inmates.

Cell-phone shot scenes of pretended dogfight and humiliating homosexual action were released in the media last week, triggering a probe into the practices of the prison officials. Asenov and several of his colleagues were arrested, and the court first placed him under house arrest. Now under the loud applause of his 50 colleagues, the Sofia military appellative court demanded just Asenov's signature and released him.

The 50 or so guards explained that they were present to perserve Asenov's identity, because they didn't want the inmates who still hadn't given specific names to "recognize" him upon seeing him in the media.

Former Sofia prison head Dimitar Raychev, who was fired Wednesday, was also in the courtroom. He shared that he had expected such an end to his career ever since he saw the footage on TV.

The scandalous video showed several inmates in humiliating sexual action, and one of the involved men later said he was forced into the orgy.

The scene was recorded last August by then prisoner Yanko Vatashki. In what was apparently a repellent celebration of his birthday, Vatashki got prison mates involved in an orgy, while he was sitting aside and taking footage with his phone.

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