Bulgarian youth coach Hristo Georgiev has pleaded guilty to prostitution-related charges this week and sentenced to a two-year conditional sentence, according to Sportal.bg. Reports have it that Hristov acted as an intermediary between pimps, prostitutes, and clients, arranging for the solicited girls to be driven around town in taxis to reach their pre-arranged destinations.
Hristov, who trained Plovdid’s Victoria Volley’s Boy’s U13 squad, was recently fired from the club, which expressed great surprise on learning of his accusations, stating that it never suspected Hristov of criminal behavior.
“The club has good results, and has won many titles under his tutelage.”
Upon learning of the accusations, parents started to pull off their children from Hristov’s training. After further investigation, the club found out that he was not registered in the compulsory register of the Ministry of Youth and Sports as required by the Bulgarian government.
Prostitution itself is legal in Bulgaria, but organised prostitution (brothels, prostitution rings, or other forms of procuring) is prohibited. The country originally gained a reputation as a transit country for human trafficking, but subsequently, it has become known as a destination itself where the sex trade takes place.
The Bulgarian government has stepped up its efforts to eradicate human trafficking, as sex trade is a major source of income for Bulgarian criminals. In the past, the Bulgarian government considered fully legalizing and regulating prostitution, but legislation on the topic did not advance.