The parents of the two young boys allegedly sexually assaulted by a British expatriate in a village near Bulgaria’s Veliko Turnovo have rejected allegations that they accepted money, gifts and property in return for sending the children to the 63-year-old man.
The British expatriate was arrested by anti-organised crime police on April 29 2012 and on May 3 was remanded in custody by a Veliko Turnovo court, which found sufficient evidence to merit a trial and deemed the accused a flight risk.
Local media reports said that the accused had confessed to committing sex acts with the two boys, aged 10 and 11, but told the court that it was "all voluntary" and no violence was involved.
Stancho Lazarov, lawyer for the accused, said that his client admitted to the actions but had said that there had been "no violence and no threats".
The man allegedly gave the parents money, a laptop and bought them a house in another village. He allegedly also bought food, paid the family’s bills and debts to other people.
Social services have yet to decide the fate of the children.
Petya Vassileva, head of the child protection unit in Veliko Turnovo, said that it was difficult to believe that the parents did not know what was happening to their children.
Interviewed by bTV, the parents denied accepting money and gifts in return for sending their children to the man.
Residents said that two years ago, there had been another man from the UK who allegedly was sexually abusing children, but villagers had forced him to leave by threatening to burn down his house.