Published: Wed, October 10, 2018
Global Media | By Derrick Guzman

TV journalist murdered in Bulgarian town of Ruse

TV journalist murdered in Bulgarian town of Ruse

But they said it does not appear that the murder was linked to her work as a journalist.

She was also raped. As of late Monday, her mobile phone had not been found yet, said Commissioner Teodor Atanasov, head of the regional Interior Ministry directorate.

The minister said investigators had spoken to Marinova's family and friends and "there is no apparent link to her work". "Just let it not be today", they said in a statement on NTV's website. "A large amount of DNA has been obtained", Borisov said.

Marinova's body was discovered on a riverside path in Ruse on Saturday.

After her death, prosecutors opened an investigation into GP Group, the private Bulgarian building company that Biro and Stoyanov spotlighted in their report, according to The Associated Press. "The hypothesis about linking the murder to her work and the topics she covered in her program is not a leading one", he said according to The Washington Post. In Ruse, mourners, some tearful, placed candles, her portrait and roses- the national flower- at the foot of a monument.

But it sparked immediate worldwide condemnation with the OSCE's media freedom representative Harlem Désir writing on Twitter: "Shocked by horrific murder of investigative journalist Victoria Marinova in #Bulgaria".

The brutal crimes shook Ruse, where murders are rare.

"As security - rather than the protection of fundamental rights and freedoms - becomes the number one priority of governments worldwide, broadly-written security laws have been twisted to silence journalists", wrote Index on Censorship's Jodie Ginsburg a year ago.

In 2016, there were 1.1 homicides per 100,000 inhabitants in Bulgaria.

The European Commission, the European Union's executive said in a tweet today: 'There is no democracy without a free press. More than 10 years after joining the bloc, it has reported only limited progress in turning the tide against graft. "Who knows? Probably she would be a good investigative reporter one day, but she's no longer here".

A Bulgarian investigative online media site went further, calling for an independent worldwide inquiry and saying corruption could compromise an investigation by Bulgarian law enforcement.

Marinova's killing - as a random act of violence or as a targeted hit - comes after two other cases that provoked concerns about press freedom in Europe.

Bulgaria is the most corrupt member state in the European Union, according to global corruption watchdog Transparency International.

A Bulgarian news site,, said Marinova may have been jogging at the time, training for an upcoming road race.

In that dismal environment, worldwide concern over Marinova's killing - particularly in the European Union, which has prided itself on its support for press freedom - was swift to develop.

The Commission urged Bulgaria to conduct a rapid investigation and the US embassy said it was shocked by the "horrific murder". Slovak journalist Jan Kuciak was shot dead along with his fiancee in February in an attack linked to his reporting on ties between Slovak officials and Italian mobsters.

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