Raids Worsen Bulgarian President’s Spat With Prosecutor

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Bulgarian police and prosecutors searched offices linked to President Rumen Radev as his conflict with the country’s top prosecutor escalated.

Thursday’s raids targeted Radev’s secretary and one of his advisers, Chief Prosecutor Ivan Geshev said. The offices weren’t used by the president but were in the same building as his. The secretary and the adviser were detained in probes into offenses including influence peddling.

Radev, whose role is largely ceremonial, has been a vocal critic of Geshev’s investigations of high-profile officials and the government’s poor progress in fighting corruption. The president himself enjoys immunity from investigation and prosecution, though Geshev is challenging that protection at the Constitutional Court.

The European Union has noted repeatedly how the powers of the prosecutor shield him from scrutiny, and Geshev and his predecessors have faced criticism for targeting selected cases while ignoring others.

Radev has been pushing since last year for a public debate to change the constitution to make the chief prosecutor more accountable.

“The prosecutor’s office won’t get involved in political games,” Geshev said Thursday. “Whether it’s the president or the prime minister, the prosecutor’s office works on the basis of collected evidence and we don’t care about the political consequences.”

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