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UK Expats Win Bulgaria Property Fraud Case over Stolen Villa

Date: 25.11.2009

UK expat Bryan Talbot has won a property fraud case in Bulgaria that has drawn the attention of Vice President of the EC, Jacques Barrot, and the UK Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, David Miliband.

Before the Court hearing it was revealed to Novinite.com that UK MEP James Elles had written to Miliband in October to urge him to write to Bulgaria PM Boyko Borisov to draw his attention to the Talbot family's problems with the Bulgarian judiciary and asking him to “intervene on their behalf.”

Meanwhile it was also revealed that Barrot stated in a letter to Elles dated September 1 2009 that the EC had “no competence to intervene (regarding Talbot's case) in the...judiciary of any individual member state...This being said the EC is conscious of the need for Bulgaria to continue its justice reforms.”

During the hearing the Foreigners Association in Bulgaria held a silent protest outside and inside Dobrich District Court in East Bulgaria in support of Talbot and his family who had their house stolen from them in 2007.

Duncan Banbury, a representative of the Foreigners Association in Bulgaria, stated exclusively to Novinite.com, that the 3 judges in the Court acted in a professional fashion, allowing Talbot to fully tell his side of the story for the first time in Court.

He added that the silent protest both inside and outside the Court Room had attracted attention due to the protesters ‘We Want Justice’ t-shirts and Banbury also thanked the protesters for the full support that they had given to Talbot and his family.

Banbury concluded by saying that the case is still open to appeal and should a further appeal be confirmed it will happen on December 23 in Sofia.

Bryan Talbot bought his dream EUR 98 000 villa in Polkovnik Sveshtarovo village near Dobrich in 2006 with his retirement money and after EUR 40 000 of renovation and furnishing made it into a little paradise away from home with the help of handyman Dimitar Teoharov.

Talbot left back to the UK giving power of attorney to Dimitar T. to allow the handyman to pay his energy bills for him. He returned later in 2007 to find the totally gutted Villa padlocked and sold by Dimitar Teoharov (who had meanwhile left the country) to a Sofia company for BGN 10 000, it was then sold on again not once but twice more for similar sums.

After a number of adjourned court cases Talbot finally won his case in Dobrich Court in July 2009 and has now won the first appeal hearing.

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