Intentionally or due to carelessness, during the previous management of the State Consolidation Company, documents have disappeared, because of which the state will probably lose BGN 75 million. The facts show that the previous executive director of the Company, Smilyana Nitova, tried to cover up the act.
This was announced at a press conference by the newly appointed management of the State Consolidation Company, which was attended by Atty. Ventsislav Dimitrov and Ivan Zagonchev.
In 2018, the state, through the SCC, acquired the receivables of the company “Kemira” for BGN 25 million, and the revenue for the state from its successful collection is expected to be another BGN 50 million. In order to realize this claim, on 21.07.2021, SCC filed a lawsuit against Kemira with a financial claim for approximately BGN 75 million. “As part of the evidence in the case, certified copies of six assignment agreements and their respective annexes have been submitted. The case at that stage can be seen as very likely to be won by the state as the circumstances are undisputed,” the SCC executive director explained.
It is clear from the chronology provided that all documents were available in original at the SCC as at 21 July 2021. However, in its response to the application, the respondent in the case disputed the authenticity of the documents. “This should have been a formal procedure and all that is required of the SCC is to re-submit the original documents. However, it appears that they have disappeared,” Ventsislav Dimitrov said.
The then executive director of the SCC did virtually nothing. “There is no information that Ms Nitova has referred to investigative services to find out how and where these documents went. There is no trace of any information having been requested from the officials who should have kept them. The previous executive director seemed to be embarrassingly calm about the fact that in this situation the state irretrievably lost BGN 75 million due to bureaucratic negligence or deliberate actions by the company entrusted to her”, said Ventsislav Dimitrov.
On July 6, 2022, or more than 3 months after the court had requested the originals, Smilyana Nitova sent letters to the previous executive directors of SCC asking them, if they had the originals of these documents, to provide them to her. “This is most likely a very ridiculous attempt to impute responsibility to her predecessors, even though the synchronicity in the disappearance of the documents and the actions of Kemira happened precisely in her term of office,” the SCC executive director said.
Smilyana Nitova has in fact concealed this information from the new members of the Board of Directors of the State Commission. “For more than 10 days we were together in the management of the company and she has not informed any of us about the situation. There is no information that this was reported to the previous Board of Directors. The only person who apparently had the information was her,” the SCC further clarified. According to the representatives, one of the hypotheses is that time was thus gained to cover the traces of the disappearance of the documents. The direct financial benefits for the private company from all this are tens of millions, which will be paid by taxpayers.
“So far, the state has lost BGN 25 million, with which it has acquired the debt and over BGN 700 thousand in case costs. Together with this, the lost benefits will be about BGN 50 million. This is a huge financial scam, which is yet to be dealt with by the investigating authorities, but if it was done deliberately, we can only guess what were the financial incentives of the people who did it,” the SCC said.
They also presented a legal analysis of the situation, according to which the state’s chances of winning the case in the absence of original documents is negligible. “We are categorical that the previous executive director was also aware of this,” said Ventsislav Dimitrov.