In a statement published by the US Embassy in Bulgaria on February 5, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo publicly announced that Bulgarian Specialized Criminal Court judge Andon Mitalov was barred from entry to the US because of involvement in significant corruption, BNT reported.
Statement by US Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo:
Today, I am designating Bulgarian Specialized Criminal Court Judge Andon Mitalov due to his involvement in significant corruption.In his official capacity, Mitalov was involved in corrupt acts that undermined the rule of law and severely compromised the independence of democratic institutions in Bulgaria.
This designation is made under Section 7031(c) of the Department of State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs Appropriations Act, 2020 (Div. G, P.L. 116-94).Under Section 7031(c), once the Secretary of State designates officials of foreign governments for their involvement, directly or indirectly, in significant corruption, those individuals and their immediate family members are ineligible for entry into the United States.
The law also requires the Secretary of State to either publicly or privately designate or identify such officials and their immediate family members.In addition to Mitalov, I am designating his wife, Kornelia Stoykova-Mitalova, and his daughter, Gergana Mitalova.
This is the first such designation in Bulgaria and reaffirms the U.S. commitment to combatting corruption in Bulgaria and globally.The United States continues to stand with the people of Bulgaria in their fight against corruption.The State Department will use these authorities to promote accountability for corrupt actors in this region and globally.