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Protesters against Judicial Corruption Block Traffic in Downtown Sofia.

Protesters have blocked traffic in front of the headquarters of Bulgaria's Supreme Judicial Council (VSS) in downtown Sofia, calling for an end to corruption in the judiciary.

Around 100 protesters have gathered in front of the VSS building on Ekzarh Yosif Street, chanting "mafia" and "resign."

Car and tram traffic is blocked, with police officers trying to get the protesters back on the sidewalk, according to reports of the Bulgarian Telegraph Agency (BTA).

A sitting of the VSS Ethics Committee, scheduled to start at 9.30 am on Monday is to include a hearing of Kamen Sitnilski, VSS member from the prosecutors' quota, in connection with leaked wiretaps of conversations between senior magistrates.

The wiretaps, obtained using special surveillance equipment, contain attempts to muster support for Sitnilski and his colleague Rumen Boev for the election of VSS members.

The VSS Ethics Committee will conduct hearings of all participants in the wiretapped conversations.

Some ten days ago, Bulgarian media outlets published transcripts of wiretapped conversations from the summer of 2012 concerning the election of VSS members from the prosecutors' quota.

Apart from Sitnilski, the VSS Ethics Committee is to examine Burgas Appellate Prosecutor Emil Hristov, Haskovo District Prosecutor Ivan Vanchev, Miglena Tyankova, Chair of the Haskovo District Court, and Hristo Georchev, Chair of the Svilengrad Regional Court.

On July 11, Chief Prosecutor Sotir Tsatsarov made clear that he had ordered the VSS Inspectorate to probe two magistrates in connection with the leaked wiretaps concerning Sitnilski's election as VSS member.

He noted that the VSS Inspectorate would inspect Burgas Appellate Prosecutor Emil Hristov and Haskovo District Prosecutor Ivan Vanchev.

Tsatsarov also informed that the conversations had been recorded through legally deployed special surveillance equipment within an ongoing criminal investigation against a magistrate.
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Publication:Sofia News Agency
Geographic Code:4EXBU
Date:Jul 15, 2013
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