State Security agents fabricate fake news

They cover up the Russian ties of the Bulgarian Madoff and impute them to Peevski

Iliyan Vassilev

Two former agents of the communist State Security mix a revolting concoction of fake news, disinformation and open lies which they use to poison the society. Bulgaria’s former ambassador to Moscow Iliyan Vassilev, who worked for the foreign intelligence service of the totalitarian regime under the alias of “Agent Sasho” and Ognyan Stefanov, Agent Academician of the State Security counterintelligence, today are among the key characters in a horrendous large-scale manipulation aimed at covering up the Russian ties of the Bulgarian Madoff and imputing them to lawmaker Delyan Peevski.

More than that – Sasho and Academic pass themselves off as “experts” in the case of Skripal and Novichok and even offer their advisory opinions on the incident with poisoned arms trader Emilyan Gebrev. The duo is readily repeating the talking points elaborated by Atanas Chobanov, editor-in-chief of the racketeers’ website who is trying to lug Peevski in the poisoning of Gebrev. Of course, without quoting any facts, evidence or touch with reality. Moreover that Gebrev was poisoned back in 2015 whereas he started showing appetite for purchasing Dunarit arms manufacturer a year later, in 2016.

The two agents have absolutely no moral right to talk about Skripal and Novichok as it became clear from their files that they have been spying on Great Britain and its citizens. In the Russian projection of the fugitive banker there is a whole constellation of oligarchs and top KGB officers as well as of employees of KGB’s successor Federal Security Service (FSB) and foreign intelligence service (SVR).

Belgian national with Russian passport Pierre Louvrier was a “cover boy” of the 1 Euro gang. The gang tried to lay hands on the golden assets bought with the money stolen from the CorpBank depositors, such as BTK, its subdivision NURTS (Digital Video Broadcasting Terrestrial service), munitions plants Dunarit and Avionams, First Digital Multiplex and peoplemetric company GARB. Russian Orthodox oligarch Konstantin Malofeef was standing behind Louvrier.

Malofeev was owner of the Kremlin propaganda channel Tsargrad. The Belgian had close friendly relations with former FSB counterintelligence officer, commander of separatists in Donetsk and first defence minister of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic, Igor Girkin-Strelkov. Both are blacklisted in the US and EC while Girkin was even sentenced by the US court to pay $400m in compensation to the families of passengers of the shot down Malaysian Boeing.

Later another Maloffev’s figurehead entered the picture, to whom Vassilev promised 20% of the assets. After both these thefts failed there followed attempts to get hold of TV7, financed with over BGN 300m of the CorpBank’s defrauded depositors. It was planned to make this TV the Kremlin’s propaganda mouthpiece, similar to the Tsargrad channel. Then Leonid Reshetnikov, KGB and SVR general and ex-diplomat working in Bulgaria as well as KGB resident on the Balkans appeared on the scene. He was the supervisor of the Russian TV channel.


Iliyan Vassilev – the biggest hypocrite of all State Security agents

Former Ambassador of Bulgaria to Rissia Iliyan Vassilev, aka agent Sasho of the First Main Directorate (FMD) of the State Security, kept an eye on a British agricultural leader in Sofia, reveals his secret file. It has been declassified by the Commission for Dossiers and Telegraph has copies of the documents. Vassilev’s personal file shows that he is one of the biggest hypocrites among State Security agents, having accepted to cooperate on an ideological basis.

In other words, he was faithful to the Marxism–Leninism doctrine. The agent had two aliases – Dragan and Sasho. There is also data on Vassilev at the Intelligence Directorate of the General Staff of the Bulgarian Armed Forces, the communist military intelligence, according to a 1985 State Security check. It is unclear whether his first alias is related to the Intelligence Directorate, as the agent fiercely protects this part of his biography.

Back in the day, Vassilev became a member of the state Bulgarian Agrarian National Union (BZNS) – a move ran by the State Security. He first got the attention of FMD officers as a student in 1978, as evidenced by a State Security note in the records. As of 1981, he was already working at the International Relations Department with the Permanent Presence of the BZNS, more specifically dealing with cases under the Most Developed Capitalist Countries tag.

In 1986, Vassilev was approached by operatives of the State Security, his contacts with people of interest to the agency were entered into the database and he was given tasks. The FMD instructed Vassilev to study the British representative during the 35th BZNS Congress in May 1986 and the ensuing international meeting. Vassilev was extremely diligent and ideologically-driven prospective agent, who impressed as such all State Security operatives who came into contact with him. That is why, a proposal for his recruitment as a secret associate of the FMD was put forward at the end of 1987. The recruitment report shows that Vassilev chose the alias Sasho.

Nowadays, Sasho is something of an “analyst” for the Fake News Factory. He plays the role of a factory floor master who spreads disinformation on two topics – he covers up for Tsvetan Vassilev’s gross embezzlement of CorpBank and tries to pin the secondary plundering of the bank’s assets on lawmaker and Telegraph Media publisher Delyan Peevski. This is despite the fact that Peevski, together with his MRF colleagues Yordan Tsonev and Hamid Hamid is the one who introduced to parliament the now adopted amendment preventing the secondary plundering of CorpBank assets.

The mechanism in which agent Sasho is involved works as follows: the fake news is published on his blog (The Blog of Ilian Vassilev) or his two Facebook profiles, from where it is immediately picked up by Club Z. Then, the fake news is copy-pasted by the website Frognews, owned by agent Academician.

Finally, to close the cycle, it is also published by Mediapool, owned by former PM Ivan Kostov’s mouthpiece Stoyana Georgieva. Google shows that agent Sasho personally produced over 80 posts and references to talking points of the oligarchy in 2017. Last year, he was even more active, with fake news about Peevski contained in over 100 of his posts and seven of the articles on his blog.

Agent Sasho’s most outrageous claim, released along the ARGO-gate scheme of the behind-the-scenes clique, is that there is no hole in the CorpBank finances. This is a staggering display of shamelessness by this newly minted “anti-communist”, “Russophobe”, and town crier of the Bulgarian Madoff. The documents declassified by the Commission for Dossiers also keep record of a shocking admission by former dictator Todor Zhivkov, one he made to former USSR leader Yury Andropov, saying: “State Security is a Bulgarian branch of the KGB.”

in other words, Sasho was an agent of the Bulgarian branch of KGB and therefore essentially worked for the KGB. Perhaps, in his capacity as ambassador of Bulgaria to Moscow he even socialised with former KGB operatives, who swapped the hammer and sickle for the two-headed eagle as the emblem of the Russian intelligence. However, we have no concrete evidence of that.


Conspiring against Her Majesty

The founder of the website Frognews Ognyan Stefanov, aka agent Academician, took part in the communist State Security’s conspiracies and campaigns against the embassy of Her Majesty, Queen Elisabeth II to Sofia. Stefanov served as a landlord for the Second Department of the Second Main Directorate (SMD) of the State Security, and his job was to lend his property to be used for secret agent meetings.

This specific department, referred to as “the English one”, was engaged in counterintelligence activities against the UK. In other words, it kept a sharp eye on diplomats, businessmen, cultural figures and even regular tourists who visited the country’s sea or mountain resorts. Stefanov was on the staff of the First Unit, which tapped and surveilled Her Majesty’s embassy to Sofia. For nine years, his lodgings were used for meetings between agents planted in the British diplomatic mission and operatives of the SMD.

He was recruited on 19 August 1980, as evidenced by his registration records, forms 4 and 6, and became on activate duty on 30 August that same year. The records show that agent Academician, similarly to his fellow Bulgarian Madoff servant agent Sasho, accepted to cooperate on an ideological basis. In other words, he was faithful to the Marxism-Leninism doctrine and the communist regime.

Stefanov was born in Pleven to a father who fought against fascism and capitalism. He studied journalism at the Lviv Military and Political School in the former USSR, which produced a plethora of future staffers for the KGB, the State Security, and the Intelligence Directorate of the General Staff of the Bulgarian Armed Forces. A highly intriguing document from the archives of the Main Political Directorate of the Bulgarian Armed Forces shows that First Lieutenant Ognyan Stefanov was a political officer, member of the Bulgarian Communist Party and secretary of the Dimitrov Communist Youth Union with the Military School for High Athletic Achievement in Sofia. He was nominated for an appointment as an editor in the National Youth newspaper.

In May 2015, a document containing pages of a hand-written notebook keeping track of visitors to CorpBank’s headquarters in Sofia went viral on the internet. The document showed records of people who visited Tsvetan Vassilev in July 2013. The name of agent Academician was on that list. Stefanov has been receiving generous payments from the Bulgarian Madoff for his media services. Between 30 June 2011 and 13 September 2012, agent Academician, through his company Tornado Media, received BGN 300,000 from a company affiliated with Vassilev.

Now, his website Frognews plays the role of a press office of the fugitive banker, while Stefanov serves as his PR. The fake news items produced against Delyan Peevski alone were more than 1,000 over the past two years. Agent Academician is loyal to his sponsors. His website works tirelessly to support the Fake News Factory and help in the attempts to clean up Vassilev’s name, while also striving to mitigate the consequences of arms dealer Emiliyan Gebrev’s shady deals for the latter’s image.

Stefanov used to be partners in the website with the late businessman Mladen Mutafchiyski. Mutafchiyski’s support for Stefanov was staggering – BGN 916,000 provided for the website through Slanchev Bryag AD, to which Mutafchiyski was executive director. The generous transfers from the company, which was 75% state-owned, came between January 2007 and March 2010.

In July 2017, the Monitor News Agency revealed that Stefanov was charged with tax evasion. In addition, the Prosecutor’s Office investigated him in connection to another huge case – the bankruptcy of the Tornado newspaper, as the publication had gone deep in debt and agent Academician had not paid the salaries of dozens of journalists. Alas, such are the morals of former State Security agents.

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