Bulgarian Appellate Court Acquits Energy Tycoon of Tax Evasion
The Sofia Appellate Court (SAC) has acquitted energy tycoon Hristo Kovachki of tax evasion to the tune of BGN 16.7 M.
Tuesday's decision of the SAC revoked the 3-year suspended sentence with five years of probation imposed by the Sofia City Court on April 14, 2011 for crimes against the tax system.
Kovachki was sentenced to a fine of BGN 20 000 plus court costs amounting to BGN 42 586.
Earlier on Tuesday, the prosecuting authority insisted that the businessman be sentenced to 5 years of imprisonment, citing evidence for over 80 fictitious deals for the supply of machines and food products sealed with four companies owned by Kovachki between 2005 and 2008 and for illegally obtained tax credit.
SAC's verdict is not final and can be appealed before the Supreme Court of Cassation (VKS).
In the beginning of 2012, it emerged that Bulgaria's Ministry of Energy, Economy and Tourism had filed a total of six lawsuits against companies in which Kovachki is involved.
Three of the lawsuits were terminated after the debtors paid the concession fees.
Coal mining company Vagledobiv Bobov Dol EOOD was sentenced by the first-instance court to pay BGN 192 000 and has partially settled its debt.
Cherno More – Burgas Mine AD was sentenced by the first-instance court to pay BGN 571 000 plus court expenses but the decision is being appealed by the concessionaire.
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