Killers rarely shoot random people past their intended victims. However, during one summer night in 2004, bullets hit not only one of the underground bosses – Asen Petrov-Shaki, but also a uniformed policeman who happened to be at the scene of the assassination attempt. The target of the shooters was Shaki – suspected of involvement in kidnappings and contract killings, but they also mowed down the Ministry of Internal Affairs officer. For more than 19 years, neither the shooters nor the author of the “wet order” were found, writes “Telegraf”.
Shortly before midnight on August 31, 2004, there were several people in the bookmaker-cafe on “Burya” street in the “Knyazhevo” district of the capital. Among them is Asen Petrov-Shaki and two of his avers, Dimitar Boykov and Petar Georgiev.
Together with the owner of the establishment, Evtim Zdravkov, they are playing cards, there is a drink in front of them. Chief Sergeant Kiril Zhivkov from the Sixth District, who is on night duty, also enters the station. The officer wants to check his slip while waiting for a patrol car to pick him up to continue patrolling the area.
He has recently been a police officer, he is the father of a 3-year-old boy. It was around 11:45 p.m. when two masked men burst into the establishment and opened fire. They seriously wounded Shaki and shot Kiril Zhivkov on the spot. Later, forensic experts will never know whether the policeman’s death was accidental, or whether the killers decided to avoid returning fire from the law enforcement officer.
The severely injured Petrov is still alive and the arriving medics take him to the Military Medical Academy as quickly as possible. However, the doctors are powerless and Shaki dies without regaining consciousness.
His relatives and the owner of the station were taken to “Pirogov” because the shooting also affected them, but their wounds were not fatal. At the scene of the attempt, all the chiefs of the SDVR and the colleagues of the murdered policeman from Shesto poured in.
The survey does not provide much information about the shooters, but shortly after the carnage, a report was made that an Audi A6 was on fire in the Gorna Banya quarter. This is the vehicle in which the killers fled and two pistols and an assault rifle were found in it. The Ministry of Internal Affairs reports that Shaki has 8 police records – for murder, kidnapping, beating, theft. The three injured have also been criminally charged.
“There are targets and killers in the gangs and they constantly change places. Some are hard at work cleaning up gangs involved in contract killings and kidnappings. If these people were in custody, this would not have happened,” commented the then Chief Secretary of the Ministry of Internal Affairs, Boyko Borisov. And he adds that there is evidence that Shaki and his gang were complicit in the shooting of Fatik on August 19, 2003 at the intersection of “Bulgaria” and “Gotse Delchev” boulevards in Sofia.
Borisov reports that days before he was killed, Shaki once again refused to give a DNA sample, despite a court decision. Borisov recalls that after an examination on the intentions after Fatik’s murder, it was proven that this weapon was in Shaki’s possession for a certain period of time.
According to criminologists, one of the main versions of Petrov’s shooting is precisely his participation in the attempt on Fatik. Ten days after Fatik’s execution, the police detained Shaki, Yosif Yosifov-Josko and three others. Automatic weapons, ammunition, bulletproof vests and police uniforms were found during searches of their homes. However, there was no evidence of a link to the attempt on Fatik and it was released.
In the end, the case of the murder of the arms dealer was closed, because the investigators did not find any clues that would lead to the guarantor and the perpetrator of the execution.
The investigation into the murder of Shaki and the police officer Kiril Zhivkov continues and the police lead to the Croatian Ivan Moje, who is believed to be a member of a “wet procurement” gang that has committed dozens of murders in Bulgaria. He was detained on September 5, 2004, and blood of the wounded boss of the bookmaker was found on one of his sneakers on a piece of paper.
The Croatian was remanded in custody and charged with the murder of police officers Zhivkov and Shaki and the attempted murder of three other people. Ivan Mozhe submitted a request to change his remand measure to “cash bail”, but in January 2005 the Sofia City Court rejected it and he remained in custody. On January 5, 2006. Acquitted of all charges due to lack of evidence. However, this decides his fate.
Shaki is one of the closest avers of Josko Kostinbrodski, who does not forgive encroachments on his people. The Croatian knows this and decides to personally go to a meeting with Josko in Slivnica to tell him to his face that he did not participate in the shooting of Petrov. Visitors to the Slivniški Hero restaurant see the two talking, then fighting. Several times Yosko asked the same question, “Who killed Shaki?” and received no other answer than, “I don’t know.”
Four people leave the disco together – Ivan Moje, Josko and two people from his group – Marian Atanasov and Plamen Simeonov. No one sees the Croatian anymore. Later, the three Bulgarians were suspected of his disappearance, but evidence that he was killed was never found. The killers who shot Shaki and the police officer Kiril Zhivkov were not found either, and their murder remained unsolved, as well as dozens of other “wet orders”.
And Borcho of his gang was found shot dead
Months before Shaki’s murder, bullets hit another member of the gang – Boris Arsov-Borcho. He is also one of the suspects in Fatik’s murder. DNA analysis showed that a biker mask found after Fatik’s murder was worn by Borcho. While the investigation was ongoing, on November 30, 2003, Boris Arsov was found murdered in a Volkswagen Golf parked in front of the Boyan church.
He was shot with a 9mm pistol, probably a Makarov. During the initial examination, forensic experts found several bullet holes in the side window, and the medical examiner found two gunshot wounds to the man’s head. A loaded combat pistol was found in the waistband of his pants. The Ministry of Internal Affairs claims that Arsov was not issued a weapon permit. Shaki, Borcho and Josko Kostinbrodskii were also accused of the kidnapping of the businessman Stefko Kolev, head of the Ruen AD company in September 2001 and the receipt of a ransom of BGN 3 million, but they were acquitted.
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