Банкеръ Weekly

Briefs

THE ANGEL CASE WILL NOT BE FINALISED TILL THE END OF THIS YEAR

For more than twenty days Judge Tsvetinka Pashkunova of Sofia City Court has been trying to find out who is guilty in this case, having left more than 300 families without houses or savings. According to some sources, the case against the entrepreneur Solomon Angel and his former partner Chavdar Raychev will be finalised not earlier than the end of 2001. Angel and Raychev were accused in accordance with Art. 203 of the Criminal Code for excessive misappropriation. The charge brought against them is for having misappropriated BGL169,918,897 (old) from 302 individuals in the period from November 1, 1993 till December 31, 1995.
After seven years of delaying the case between the court, the investigation and the prosecutor's office, the first session, attracting considerable public interest, took place on May 2, 2001. Twenty days later, on May 22, 2001, however, when BPB Executive Directors Vladimir Vladimirov and Reny Petkova and the former Director of the failed ELITBANK Ivo Georguiev were summoned to wittness, only three investors attended the session.
At present there are about USD115,000 and BGL8,000 in Angel's blocked accounts with the Post Bank. Although it might sound absurd, according to most investors Post Bank is to blame that Angel managed to trick them, taking their money away. Their claim is based on Art. 10 of the contracts signed between Angel and the investors. It says that Bulgarian Post Bank guarantees that all amounts invested by the Buyer under the following contract will be collected in Acc.No. 920 180 067 001-0 of the Seller and will be utilized for the construction of the building, subject to the contract. According to Reny Petkova, however this is not a bank guarantee, but just an agreement undertaken by Post Bank to monitor the spending of the means collected in the account. This contract clause would have allowed the credit institution to better monitor the company activities, as besides being a customer, the company had certain liabilities towards it.
In the meantime the credit institution's managers cleared all their committments through an extrajudicial settlement. Still in the beginning of 1997 Post Bank managers (at that time Momchil Andreev and Evgeni Atanassov are Post Bank Executive Directors) repaid to each investor, who agreed upon settlement, 39.9% of the amount he invested, with the respective interests. Through this agreement the investors undertook to finalise their relations with Post Bank, resulting from the preliminary contracts for sale signed with Angel.

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