Vassilev and Kulezich in a painful telephone duet against Peevski

Delyan Peevski

The love for money knows no bounds. It also overcomes a bad phone connection, as the few viewers of the boutique TV show hosted by Lyuba Kulezich on the unpretentious channel Eurocom had the chance to witness.

We say “boutique” because since its very inception the show has targeted a very specific audience of media outlets funded by the indicted oligarchs in Bulgaria, which watch it with the sole purpose of then retranslating the fake news it produces through their publications (the website Frognews owned by Ognyan Stefanov, aka agent Academician of the State Security, normally leads the pack, but the flagships of the Capital circle are always a close second). The programme’s purpose is clear – to churn out these fake news in order to justify the fees that it receives from Tsvetan Vassilev (thanks to the money he stole from CorpBank) and that have helped the host improve her looks with cosmetic procedures.

In pursuit of this mission, Kulezich regularly gives the fugitive banker indicted for embezzling billions from CorpBank depositors platform by alternating between visits to Belgrade for live interviews and conversations over Skype. In this case, the word “interview” is applied loosely considering the fact that Vassilev usually launches into a monologue that is only occasionally and sheepishly interrupted by the pseudo-journalist in order for her to harmonise with him. This is exactly what the viewers of the latest show saw, the only difference being that the duet of the fugitive oligarch and the TV host resembled a scene from the 'Allo 'Allo! series as Kulezich reached Vassilev over the phone so as to organise a public platform for him as soon as possible.

What created this rush? The TV host revealed that herself – the investigators’ discoveries about the cyberattack against the National Revenue Agency (one of which was that the company whose employee stole the tax agency’s database served the election campaign of the circles around Prokopiev and Vassilev in order to feed compromising material to the website with Kremlin ties Bivol).

And so, after five minutes of Kulezich’s painful attempts to get a clear telephone connection, with the professional protester and blogger Asen Genov spinning a surrealistic conspiracy theory that the state is trying to steal the business of the hacker company, Vassilev got to the point. He attacked Deputy Prosecutor General Ivan Geshev, who on Tuesday provided details proving that the company’s employees were carrying out a political order. The next one to be attacked was the main enemy of Vassilev (and the rest of the oligarchs) – lawmaker and Telegraph Media publisher Delyan Peevski. Completely in unison with the cohort of mouthpieces and media outlets affiliated with the Capital business circle and its political manifestation – the oligarchic party Yes, Bulgaria – the fugitive banker tried to link Geshev to Peevski without giving a single concrete fact in support of such an allegation. On the contrary, in a bid to lend some credibility to his claims, he said that Geshev took on the CorpBank case following a meeting with Peevski. Then Vassilev showed the lie to his own words by admitting that he cannot prove that such a meeting took place. Well, that is because it never happened. Yet, this did not stop first Frognews and then other cogs of the oligarchy’s slandering machine from spreading the newly produced fake news immediately following the interview.

Unsurprisingly, the interview never touched on the revelation that the hacker Kristian Boykov’s office laptop was found to contain a “Bivol search” folder with stolen details of public figures, including Peevski. Nor were Vassilev’s assertions about the deputy prosecutor general and the lawmaker questioned, even though the former is the lead prosecutor on the case against Vassilev and the latter helped introduce to parliament various amendments that stopped the secondary plundering of CorpBank assets. The answers to any of these questions would demolish the talking points pushed by Vassilev and Prokopiev and disseminated by their town-criers and hired scribblers. The truth is that the only people in Bulgaria who have interest in sabotaging the Prosecutor’s Office are the criminals, like the indicted oligarchs who are doing their best to take control of the institution, just like they captured one of the courts – the Supreme Court of Cassation headed by the puppet judge Lozan Panov.

As for the programme hosted by Kulezich – for the abovementioned reasons we can safely assume that, even though he refuses to return to Bulgaria and face the judicial system, Vassilev will appear on his favourite TV hosts’ show at least several more times in the run-up to the local elections and the appointment of a new prosecutor general in a few months. Who knows, the next time it may be in the form of a hologram to avoid another problematic phone connection.

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