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Dr. Atanas Rusev

Security Program


PhD in Organizational Psychology, Sofia University "St. Kl. Ohridski"

MA in Social Psychology, Sofia University "St. Kl. Ohridski"

MA in Work and Organisational Psychology, Sofia University "St. Kl. Ohridski"



Atanas Rusev is the Director of the Security Program at CSD. After joining CSD in 2010, he has worked on a number of research projects, funded by the Prevention and Fight Against Crime Programme, Internal Security Fund and 7th Framework Programme of the European Commission. Atanas is responsible for project management, research, data collection, quantitative and qualitative analysis within key projects in the area of justice and home affairs. His research focus is related to organised crime and in particular extortion, loansharking, drug trafficking and drug markets, prostitution markets and human trafficking, organised VAT frauds, corruption and organised crime, money laundering and confiscated criminal assets. He is an author of various publications on corruption and organised crime, financing of organised crime, organised crime threat assessment and confiscation of criminal assets. During 2008-2010 he worked as an external consultant to the National Centre for Drug Addictions and the National Programme for Prevention and Control of HIV/AIDS, run by the Ministry of Health. Atanas is also a member of the European Society of Criminology.

Research Focus 

Organised crime; extortion; usury; drug markets; prostitution markets; trafficking in human beings; confiscated criminal assets



-           Extortion and Extortion Racketeering. (2018). In Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Criminology and Criminal Justice. Oxford University. (author).

-           Cross-border organised crime: Bulgaria and Norway in the Context of the Migrant Crisis. (2017). Center for the Study of Democracy, Sofia. (editor).

-           The role of the Internet in people smuggling and human trafficking. (2017). Università degli Studi di Trento, Trento (co-author).

-           Policy paper with recommendations. Corruption and trafficking in women. (2016). Scuola Normale Superiore, Pisa (co-author).

-           Corruption and trafficking in women. Analytical report of interview findings. (2016). Center for Study of Democracy, Sofia (co-author).

-           Sharks in Sheeps Clothing: Modalities of Predatory and Illegal Lending in Bulgaria. In G. Antonopoulos (ed.), ‘Illegal Entrepreneurship, Organised Crime and Social control’ (2016). Springer (co-author).

-           Extortion racketeering in the EU: Vulnerability factors. (2016) Center for Study of Democracy, Sofia (co-author).

-           A Force for Good? Mapping the Private Security Landscape in Southeast Europe. (2015) Geneva Centre for the Democratic Control of Armed Forces, Belgrade/Geneva (co-author).

-           Financing of Organised Crime. 2015. Center for Study of Democracy, Sofia (co-author).

-           Disposal of Confiscated Assets in the EU Member States: Laws and Practices. (2014). Center for Study of Democracy, Sofia (co-author).

-           Injecting Drug Users and Tuberculosis – or why informed does not always mean healthy. (2013) Contemporary Humanitaristics, 2, pp. 55-67. (co-author).

-           Human Trafficking, Border Security and Related Corruption in the EU. 2013. DCAF, Brussels (author).

-           Country Report Bulgaria. In T. Apostolou (ed.), ‘Drug Policy and Drug Legislation in South East Europe’. 2013. NOMIKI BIBLIOTHIKI GROUP, Thessaloniki (co-author).

-           Management and disposal of confiscated criminal assets in Bulgaria. In Roberto Forte (ed. ), ‘Policy Paper: Organized Crime and the Fight against Crime in the Western Balkans’. 2013. SAPUCCA Project (author).

-           European lessons from the Bulgarian Serious Organized Crime Threat Assessment. In P. van Duyne, J. Harvey, G. Antonopoulos, K. von Lampe, and A. Maljević, J. Spencer (eds.) Human dimensions in organized crime, money laundering and corruption. 2013. Wolf Legal Publishers, Oisterwijk, NL (co-author).

-           Serious and Organised Crime Threat Assessment. 2012.  Center for Study of Democracy, Sofia (co-author).

-           No evidence of association between 118A> G OPRM1 polymorphism and heroin dependence in a large Bulgarian case-control sample. (2011) Drug and Alcohol Dependence, 117 (1), pp. 62-65. (co-author).

-           Discriminative practices against women drug users when accessing health care services during pregnancy and maternity. 2008. Initiative for Health Foundation. Sofia.

-           Treatment of Drug Dependencies in Bulgaria. Survey On Treatment Demand And Barriers To Access Among Problem Drug Users. In Ancella Voets & Georg Bröring (eds.), ‘Making Voices Heard: Access To Health And Social Services For Substance Users’’. 2008. Foundation Regenboog/AMOC. Amsterdam.

-           Characteristics and Risky Behavior of Injecting Drug Users In Sofia. Effectiveness Of Outreach Work in HIV Prevention and Harm Reduction. 2004. Initiative for Health Foundation. Sofia





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