CEO: Blackmail Drove Leading Bulgaria Drug Company into Bankruptcy

Crime | April 20, 2010, Tuesday // 14:35
Bulgaria: CEO: Blackmail Drove Leading Bulgaria Drug Company into Bankruptcy Smile of Bulgaria's ex Deputy Health Minister Emil Rainov may turn into a scowl as the investigation against him on bribery charges continues. Photo by BGNES

Pressure by ex Deputy Health Minister Emil Rainov, who has been charged with malfeasance, has resulted in the bankruptcy of a leading Bulgarian distributor of medicines.

Toni Vekov, CEO of Trade League (one of Bulgaria's biggest distributors of medicine) conceded in an interview for BNR on Tuesday, that the former deputy health minister had asked the company for a bribe.

In 2005-2008, the then Bulgaria's Deputy Health Minister Emil Rainov, had demanded that the company pay him two installments of BGN 17 M and BGN 11 M each, as an influence trade-off.

Rainov had vowed to influence other high-ranking officials in their decision to assign drug public procurement deals for the Health Ministry and the National Health Insurance Fund in favor of Trade League.

On Monday Bulgaria’s ex Deputy Health Minister Emil Rainov was accused of trading in influence while two charges of abuse of power were raised against the acting head of the National Health Insurance Fund, Zheni Nacheva.

“Everyone in Bulgaria who works in the health care is surprised by the accusations raised against Nacheva,” stated on Tuesday for BNR Lachezar Ivanov, the chair of the Parliamentary Health Commission and MP from the ruling GERB party.

He refused to elaborate on the issue but expressed his firm belief that the charges against Nacheva do not mar the reputation of the ruling GERB party.

Veladin Bitolski, the former head of the Cabinet of Bulgaria's ex Prime Minister Sergey Stanishev, was also charged with bribery on Monday. He was accused of acting as an accomplice to Emil Rainov in the blackmail of Trade League.

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Tags: Emil Rainov, Deputy Health Minister, Health Ministry, bribery, Trade League, Zheni Nacheva, Veladin Bitolski

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