AP

US sanctions Bulgarian officials, firms for corruption

Feb 9, 2023, 7:27 PM | Updated: Feb 10, 2023, 9:58 am

FILE - The Department of the Treasury's seal outside the Treasury Department building in Washington...

FILE - The Department of the Treasury's seal outside the Treasury Department building in Washington on May 4, 2021. The Treasury Department on Friday, Feb. 10, 2023, announced sanctions on five current and former Bulgarian officials, as well as five entities accused of illicit personal gain, undermining the country’s democratic institutions and perpetuating “corrosive dependence on Russian energy sources.” (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky, File)

(AP Photo/Patrick Semansky, File)

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Treasury Department on Friday announced sanctions on five current and former Bulgarian officials, as well as five entities accused of illicit personal gain, undermining the country’s democratic institutions and perpetuating “corrosive dependence on Russian energy sources.”

Brian Nelson, treasury’s undersecretary for terrorism and financial intelligence, said the U.S. “supports our NATO ally Bulgaria in its fight against both entrenched corruption and Russian influence, which undermine democratic institutions.”

“Corruption robs the Bulgarian people of hundreds of millions of dollars and hinders investment and economic growth in the country,” he said.

Those sanctioned include Rumen Stoyanov Ovcharov, a Bulgarian member of parliament; Vladislav Ivanov Goranov, a former Bulgarian politician; Aleksandar Hristov Nikolov, a former CEO and deputy director of Kozloduy Nuclear Power Plant, Bulgaria’s sole nuclear power plant owned by the government, and Ivan Kirov Genov, a former CEO of KNPP and former Bulgarian politician.

In addition, the State Department also imposed visa restrictions on Ovcharov, Nikolov and Goranov for involvement in significant corruption, which will impact their immediate family members making them ineligible for entry into the United States.

The Biden administration relies on sanctions authority from a Donald Trump-era executive order that implements the Global Magnitsky Human Rights Accountability Act that “targets perpetrators of serious human rights abuse and corruption around the world.”

___

Associated Press Diplomatic writer Matthew Lee contributed to this report.

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

moore redmond washington...

Associated Press

U.S. Supreme Court rules against Redmond couple challenging foreign income tax

The court ruled in the case of Charles and Kathleen Moore, of Redmond, Washington after they previously challenged a $15,000 tax bill.

14 hours ago

Image:The New York Giants' Willie Mays poses for a photo during baseball spring training in 1972. M...

Associated Press

Willie Mays, Giants’ electrifying ‘Say Hey Kid,’ dies at 93

Willie Mays, whose singular combination of talent, drive and exuberance made him one of baseball’s greatest players, has died. He was 93.

2 days ago

Image: This photo provided by the Washington Department of Ecology shows a derailed BNSF train on t...

Associated Press

Judge orders BNSF to pay Washington tribe nearly $400M for trespassing with oil trains

BNSF Railway must pay the sum to a Native American tribe in Washington after it ran 100-car trains with crude oil on the tribe's reservation.

3 days ago

Photo: In this photo provided by Tieanna Joseph Cade, an amusement park ride is shown stuck with 30...

Associated Press

Crews rescue 28 people trapped upside down high on Oregon amusement park ride

Emergency crews in Oregon rescued 28 people after they were stuck dangling upside down high on a ride at a century-old amusement park.

3 days ago

juneteenth shooting texas...

Associated Press

2 killed and 6 wounded in shooting during a Juneteenth celebration in a Texas park

A shooting in a Texas park left two people dead and six wounded, including two children, on Saturday, authorities said.

4 days ago

Photo: Israeli soldiers drive a tank near the Israeli-Gaza border, in southern Israel, Wednesday, J...

Jack Jeffery, The Associated Press

8 Israeli soldiers killed in southern Gaza in deadliest attack on Israeli forces in months

An explosion in Gaza killed eight Israeli soldiers, the military said Saturday, making it the deadliest attack on Israeli forces in months.

5 days ago

US sanctions Bulgarian officials, firms for corruption