Triumvirate of junk spreads lies about Delyan Peevski

The Bobokov brothers inundate the public with fake news to clean up their image and pose as victims

A certain triumvirate is trying to hold Bulgaria captive. A triumvirate of oligarchs served by puppet journalists and fake news. A triumvirate of people who have amassed their wealth on the back of Bulgarian citizen thanks to corruption and waste disposal. And now these same people are attempting to plunge the country and its public into a swamp of their own vice and lies (dressed up as news) in order to keep making millions at the expense of the Bulgarian people.

It is hardly necessary for us to name the pillars of this triumvirate, especially the oligarchs. You can easily spot them by the interviews they give, which seem to be cast in the same mould. The moment they are asked about the dubious ways in which they have accumulated wealth, they start singing the same tune.

They only talk to convenient media outlets and pseudo-journalists who have traded in their calling to protect the public interest for serving private interests.

The interview always features a painfully familiar refrain, which portrays the interviewee as “an honest businessman”, “who has been made a victim of repression”, “so that his business can be stolen”. 

The central theme is always based on lies thrown around without a shred of evidence, connection to reality or fact to support them. Lies that are told repeatedly so that they could stick with the public consciousness as facts.

Another fixture of these interviews is the practice of involving the name of one particular figure, someone who has become a thorn in the side of this cohort of oligarchs and who is constantly blamed for their crimes.

Sounds familiar right? You have been force-fed this formula by a series of so-called honest businessmen over the years. The most recent offenders have been the “honest” gambling tzar with a record number of charges Vasil Bozhkov and his family friends (through their wives), the Lords of Junk – Plamen Bobokov and Atanas Bobokov. But the tone was set years ago by another prominent friend of this crowd – financial fraudster Tsvetan Vassilev.

What these people share is far more than family friendships. The list includes the honest (in their own words) way in which they made their first million as well as the ones that came after that; the time period in which they did it; and now – their defense against charges brought against them as well as the platforms through which they disseminate their theses.

In the months since they were slapped with their first charge at the end of May, the Bobokov brothers, who became multi-millionaires thanks to recycling waste (and dumping toxic waste poisoning the environment and harming people’s health for years, according to investigators), have been making public appearances left and right, making themselves out to be victims. Their latest farcical performance was on Sunday. The two brothers, the criminal case against whom contains thousands of pages of evidence and who are being investigated by prosecutor’s offices in several countries, appeared on national air on bTV soon after the older brother was released on bail against the record sum for Bulgaria of BGN 2m to assert that they are victims of a “hostile takeover” by a group that involves… lawmaker Delyan Peevski. The aforementioned thorn in the side of the oligarchy who for years has been bombarded with lies by the behind-the-scenes players in Bulgaria because of the legislation he has initiated in order to stop their schemes and because of his publications’ decades-long policy of systematically exposing their shady deals and corruption schemes.

The Bobokov brothers presented no evidence to support their claims, which was a continuation of their approach to previous interviews. What they have done, though, is contradict themselves by changing their stories about Peevski every time they whined about him to some media outlet or another over the past few months.

25 June 2020: In an interview for Capital, the younger Bobokov brother, Plamen, who now claims that the lawmaker wants to take their business away, admits that he not only does not know Peevski, but has never communicated with him even through intermediaries. “I have never met that grand fellow,” he says when asked if he has met with Peevski. “Not really” is his answer to the question if they have had communications through intermediaries.

30 September 2020: Despite his own June admission that he has never had any sort of communication with the lawmaker, let alone received demands from him, Plamen Bobokov says in an interview with Dnevnik that he and his brother have been “targeted” by Peevski who allegedly wants to steal Monbat from them. The interviewer does not even ask a follow-up question about evidence or about the obvious discrepancy between the interviewee’s words and his earlier claims. Furthermore, yet another blatant lie is floated – that Peevski has acquired Monbat’s main competitor Elbat. A slander that is later disproven by Dimitar Popov, owner and managing director of Elbat, who says he does not know Peevksi and has never met him personally. 

29 November 2020: A third interview (this one with bTV) and a third different version of the story. Bobokov once again says that Peevski wants their business, but demotes him from “orchestrator” of the attack to a mere participant. Again, no evidence is presented despite the persistent calls for such by the interviewer this time. No evidence can be provided because there is none since the whole thing is one big fabrication. A badly patched-up fabrication composed of the same fake news that has been peddled for years by the triumvirate trying to hold the public and public discourse captive to propaganda lies and slander.         

Although being like an avalanche, the slanders in question follow several specific matrices in the cases of indicted and accused oligarchs.

One of them launches the so-called "corporate raid". Among the first who tried to hide their crimes behind this lie was Tsvetan Vassilev, the fugitive banker who drained the billions from CorpBank. Since his flee abroad until now, Vassilev has been trying to make out that the coffer he had drained actually had a liquidity - a grotesque lie, which was refuted so far by several relatively independent sources. Firstly, by the Father of the Currency Board, Steve Hanke, then by the investigating firm AlixPartners, and finally by the International Court of Arbitration in Washington.

Despite the apparent failure of this matrix, it has been applied three more times in the last year alone. A few months ago, they tried to pin to Peevski an attempt for "stealing" the Hippoland kid’s store. This lie was also refuted, even by the owner himself of the trade toy’s chain. However, this fact did not prevent the authors of the slander in the face of the political animators from Yes, Bulgaria Party Hristo Ivanov and Ivo Mirchev to continue repeating it. Before Hippoland case, another slander was launched that Peevski wanted to "put in his mouth" the business of the "elevators’ king" Iliya Zlatanov. Undoubtedly, no one will be surprised that this lie was shattered again under the pressure of the evidence. Which does not stop oligarchs like Bobokov brothers from trying hard to resuscitate it now. Despite the obvious lack of evidence for their claims and any connection with the reality.

Now is the occasion to specify that the lawmaker’s business is completely transparent and it can be easily checked in the public registers. He has nothing to do with the junk, elevators, toys, nor with any other areas different from publicly announced by him. Moreover, this was proved during all the inspections of his property, made over the years by the institutions in our country.

Another important point - Delyan Peevski is an MP from an opposition party and he practically has no any power resources besides the right of a legislative initiative. And since this fact logically raises the question of how then he can be the most omnipotent person in our country, as the oligarchs’ triumvirate, puppet journalists and the fake news items launched by them are trying to make him out, the turn of the second matrix is coming. About his fictitious ties with the Prosecutor’s Office.

Delyan Peevski not only has nothing to do with the Prosecutor's Office, but a year ago a representative of the state prosecution tried even to impose an unprecedented censorship on the biggest daily in the country - the Telegraph outlet issued by him, ordering the newspaper's trade mark to be declared invalid.  Despite of the latter and despite of the far more real and evidence-based commitments of prominent judges to the behind-the-scene clique in our country, the oligarchs’ triumvirate  continues to push the false thesis of an imaginary ties between Peevski and the Prosecutor’s Office.

The latest example is from 30 November. Long before the announcement that Plamen Bobokov had a new accusation - this time for a treasure-hunter’s affair, Mediapool outlet of Stoyana Georgieva - former PM Ivan Kostov’s spokesperson – had linked his another case of bringing to justice with his interview on bTV. "After saying that Peevski wanted his business, Bobokov received a new accusation," Georgieva made this sensational announcement. Over the years, she has provided the forum on her website to every “infant” in need of Kostov's gangster privatisation. On this line - to Bobokov brothers too.

What exactly are the facts? From the official data, released a few hours later, it became clear that Bobokov had received the summons to appear before investigators on 10 November and he had to be interrogated on 23 November. But he postponed it to 30 November on the grounds that his lawyer was under quarantine. In other words - after his interview on bTV. Is it a coincidence? Certainly not. The same way as it is not a coincidence, nor a lack of information, the lie thrown by Mediapool for the imaginary ties between Peevski and the Prosecutor's Office.

The oligarchs’ triumvirate  could not spew out its propaganda and lies without the assistance of a convenient platform where to spread its slanders. Mediapool website is one of the emblematic examples, in which flow can be found not only the already listed matrices for creating fake news, but also a whole series of solid examples of PR in favour of oligarchs. Because this is exactly what the website is doing - it washes the image of behind-the-scene players, chased by the Bulgarian judiciary (most recently Bozhkov and Bobokov brothers) and denigrates their enemies. It must be acknowledged that over the years, the website has undoubtedly profiled itself in this activity, and currently it is among the main machines for slanders.

The contortion of the facts already cited above in favour of the manipulation of imaginary ties between Delyan Peevski and the Prosecutor’s Office is just one of the hundreds examples. Another favourite leitmotif, used by the website in its active denigration of this enemy of the Bulgarian oligarchy, is his pinning to all known and unknown companies in all spheres of public life with the cliché "he is associated with". There are countless examples here again, but among the most recent is the statement from the last few weeks that "a road maintenance company associated with Peevski is repairing the Maritsa motorway." The blame is put on AB AD in the publication, and what is absurd here is the explicit explanation that there is no data in the country's registers for a connection between the MP and the company above. As such ties do not exist, it is logical not to be any connection there. What is even more absurd is that Mediapool's statement of imaginary commitment is based on previous publication from four years ago, when it was clarified again that there was no data and clear evidence indicating that AB AD had anything to do with Peevski, but "politicians" claimed otherwise. The politicians in question, of course, were not cited, because either they probably did not exist or they knew very well that they were pushing a lie. The same way as they knew very well whom did they serve - the same triumvirate , existing due to corruption and pushing our society back into the swamp, flooding it with fake news.

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