Published: Tue, October 09, 2018
Life&Culture | By Rose Hansen

Popular Bulgarian Journalist Victoria Marinova Raped And Beaten To Death

Popular Bulgarian Journalist Victoria Marinova Raped And Beaten To Death

"With great pain and insurmountable grief, the TVN team is experiencing the loss of our beloved colleague Viktoria Marinova and we pray for sympathy to the sorrow of her relatives and colleagues", TVN, the Bulgarian TV broadcaster where she had worked, said in a statement. She hosted the recently-launched 'Detector' program, and its last episode covered the investigation by Bivol website, claiming to expose a corruption scheme inside EU-funded projects.

Iliyan Enchev, the deputy regional chief of the Interior Ministry in Ruse, told a news conference that a person walking in a park in Ruse, a Danube River city on the border with Romania, notified police of a female corpse on October 6.

Prosecutors said the 30-year-old had been raped, beaten and suffocated.

The Committee to Protect Journalists EU (CPJ) has called Marinova's death "barbaric" and has called for Bulgaria to "employ all efforts and resources to carry out an exhaustive inquiry and bring to justice those responsible".

Last month, the two reporters had been detained by Bulgarian police.

Prosecutor General Sotir Tsatsarov concurred.

Condolences poured in on social media for Marinova who leaves behind a small child. While no evidence of a motive has appeared at this time, local law enforcement is not ruling out the possibility that her death is connected to her journalistic work. Investigators are still trying to trace potential witnesses and establish a motive for her killing.

On the rating of freedom of the media of the Reporters Without Borders global non-profit, non-governmental organization, Bulgaria was ranked 111 and the last among the European Union countries.

In October 2017, Daphne Caruana Galiza, a Maltese journalist known for exposing high level corruption, was murdered by a bomb placed on her vehicle.

Saint John oil refinery explosion worries residents
Saint John police said they are responding to an incident at the refinery and are asking residents to avoid the area altogether. The refinery is near several residential neighbourhoods about five kilometres from the city core, known as Uptown.

Bulgarian police said they were considering all possible scenarios and examining both Marinova's personal and professional lives for leads.

"We are in shock", the man said, asking not to be named since he was not authorized to speak publicly.

The murder was similarly condemned by the European and International Federation of Journalists, both of which said they were deeply shocked by the murder. The research is checking all theories including those related to Marinova's journalistic work.

He quoted Juncker as saying previously that "too many" journalists are being intimidated, attacked or murdered and "there is no democracy without a free press".

Hundreds of mourners, some tearful, placed candles, her portrait and roses - the national flower- at the foot of a monument in the town of Ruse on Monday night. It featured the work of two journalists investigating the alleged misuse of public European Union funds by a network of corporations in the region.

While Slovak journalist Jan Kuciak was shot dead with his fiancee in February this year after looking into alleged political corruption linked to Italian organised crime.

Transparency International, a global corruption watchdog, has identified Bulgaria as the most corrupt member state in the EU.

Giegold said, "First Malta, then Slovakia, now Bulgaria".

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