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Sunday, December 20, 1998 Published at 13:06 GMT

World: Europe

Bulgarian mafia boss shot dead

One of the suspected leaders of the Bulgarian criminal underworld, Ivo Karamanski, has been shot dead in what the police say was a drunken quarrel at a private party near Sofia.

Mr Karamanski, a former national rowing champion, was on bail, facing charges of extortion and assault.

Under communist rule he was convicted of car theft and counterfeiting money.

Mr Karamanski ran asecurity firm, Corona, which was recently refused a licence and which, correspondents say, was suspected of operating protection rackets.

Police say they have arrested a man in connection with the killing.

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