Germany arrests suspect in Bulgarian journalist murder

Cheryl Sanders
October 10, 2018

The minister said investigators had spoken to Marinova's family and friends and "there is no apparent link to her work".

The individual being held over the killing of Ms Marinova is a "Romanian citizen with a passport from Moldova", according to unconfirmed reports from Bulgaria's interior ministry broadcast on national radio.

On Tuesday, a Romanian suspect was arrested and later released in relation to Marinova's death.

"Shocked by horrific murder of investigative journalists Victoria Marinova in #Bulgaria", read a tweet from the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe.

Viktoria Marinova's body was found on Saturday in a park in the northern city of Ruse, near the River Danube.

He said Krassimirov, a resident of Ruse, had a criminal record for scrap metal theft.

Bulgarian Prime Minister Boyko Borisov said he is confident "it's a matter of time" before investigators uncover the culprit, according to state media.

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 brutal killing of 30-year-old Viktoria Marinova - who presented a current affairs talk programme called "Detector" for the small TVN television channel - shocked the country and drew global condemnation. It also ranks 111 out of 180 in terms of press freedom, the lowest in the European Union, according to Reporters Without Borders (RSF), a French organization devoted to the protection of journalists.

bTV, another Bulgarian broadcaster, reported that police found the journalist's phone in the suspect's apartment in Ruse.

In a recent program, she interviewed a Bulgarian journalist and one from Rise Romania, who had been temporarily detained in Bulgaria last month while conducting an investigation into a suspected EU-funds fraud.

The two investigative journalists were briefly detained in September while looking into the case. Last October, Daphne Caruana Galizia, one of Malta's best-known investigative journalists, was killed when a powerful bomb blew up her auto.

Even if Marinova's murder proves unrelated to her work, many local commentators were quick to point out that crimes against women are endemic in Bulgaria.

A Bulgarian investigative online media site has gone further, calling for an independent global inquiry, saying a Bulgarian investigation could be compromised by corrupt Bulgarian officials.

The Balkan nation joined the European Union in 2007 and was ranked 71st on Transparency International's corruption list a year ago.

Other reports by iNewsToday