Nexo intends to sue state over raid
Nexo plans to sue the Bulgarian state for more than 1 billion leva, according to Antoni Trenchev, one of the founders of the Nexo cryptobank. Trenchev referenced the damage done to his company after their offices were raided by the prosecutor's office just as it was about to launch an Initial Public Offering in the USA.
The raid on Nexo's Bulgarian offices took place on January 12 and led to four people being charged with participating in an organized crime group on counts of money laundering, tax fraud, computer crimes and banking without a license. Chief Prosecutor Ivan Geshev announced over the weekend that Nexo's founders will soon be sought by Interpol.
Trenchev emphasized that the out-of-court settlement signed in the US with the New York State Attorney's Office is not an admission of guilt over administrative violations. "We stopped recruiting new clients from the US a long time ago because there is no clear regulatory framework," said Trenchev. He added that there was no truth to the prosecution's claims that the raid on Bulgarian offices was ordered by the USA.
Bulgaria recalls ambassador to North Macedonia
Bulgaria has recalled its ambassador to the Republic of North Macedonia, Angel Angelov, for consultations at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, citing Bulgarians' human rights in North Macedonia, hate crimes and the recent attack on an individual of Bulgarian ethnic origin in Ohrid.
This is being seen as a serious deterioration in relations and means that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs has decided to temporarily reduce the level of diplomatic representation of Bulgaria in Skopje.
US ambassador condemns oligarchs' power
American ambassador Hero Mustafa has condemned Bulgarian oligarchs over their strong ties to the state and for using their economic leverage to sanitize their image.
"Real reform will happen only if it is implemented in the judicial sector and the prosecutor's office," she said in response to questions about those sanctioned under the Magnitsky Law, including MP Delyan Peevski.