Get more Mail & Guardian
Subscribe or Login

Bulgarian journalist Viktoria Marinova murdered

A broadcast journalist who had been investigating alleged corruption involving European Union funds has been found raped and murdered, but it is unclear whether her death is in connection with her work.

The body of Viktoria Marinova was found over the weekend in Bulgaria’s northern city of Ruse near an alley. 

She worked for a popular local TV station, TVN, which noted in a statement that it was experiencing “great pain and insurmountable grief”.

According to a Deutsche Welle report, regional prosecutor Georgy Georgiev said preliminary investigations show Marinova suffered blunt force trauma to the head and was suffocated.

Her belongings including a cell phone, car keys, glasses and articles of clothing were missing, Georgiev added.

Bulgaria’s Interior Minister Mladen Mladenov confirmed that Marinova was raped before she was killed, describing her death as “exceptionally brutal”. But Mladenov claimed that there was no evidence that her death had any connection to her work. “It is about rape and murder,” he said.

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.”

In a statement released by CPJ, Marinova had interviewed two journalists who had been looking into allegations of fraud involving the European Union and a global investigating reporting platform.

Authorities are in the process of identifying witnesses and establishing a motive for murder, CNN reported.

The country’s Prime Minister Boyko Borisov is confident that Marinova’s killer would be apprehended and brought to justice, adding that the “best criminologists were sent to Ruse” and “a large amount of DNA has been obtained”.

Marinova is the third journalist to have died in the European Union over the past year, and the fourth since the start of 2017.

Investigative Slovak journalist Ján Kuciak was shot in the head, and a critic of Malta’s government, Daphne Caruana Galizia, was killed in a grisly car explosion.

Bulgaria is ranked 111 out of 180 countries in the Reporters Without Borders World Press Freedom index.

Subscribe for R500/year

Thanks for enjoying the Mail & Guardian, we’re proud of our 36 year history, throughout which we have delivered to readers the most important, unbiased stories in South Africa. Good journalism costs, though, and right from our very first edition we’ve relied on reader subscriptions to protect our independence.

Digital subscribers get access to all of our award-winning journalism, including premium features, as well as exclusive events, newsletters, webinars and the cryptic crossword. Click here to find out how to join them and get a 57% discount in your first year.

Related stories

WELCOME TO YOUR M&G

If you’re reading this, you clearly have great taste

If you haven’t already, you can subscribe to the Mail & Guardian for less than the cost of a cup of coffee a week, and get more great reads.

Already a subscriber? Sign in here

Advertising

Subscribers only

South Africa’s mothballed ‘supermall-ification’ sets strip malls up for success

Analysts agree that the country has enough malls and that, post-Covid, the convenience of local centres lure customers

Mabuza’s Russian jaunts and the slippery consequences of medical tourism

For more than five years the deputy president has remained steadfast in his right to travel abroad to receive medical treatment

More top stories

Deputy president Mabuza begs Tshwane voters: ‘Don’t abandon the ANC’

Angry Atteridgeville residents hurl insults at ‘dysfunctional’ ANC full of ‘corrupt individuals’ as Mabuza fails to placate them with party T-shirts and doeks

Taxi operators clash with cops over disputed Route B97 in...

Three suspects remain in custody following their arrest on charges of attempted murder and assault after eight taxis were impounded

SA teens, you’re next in the queue for a vaccine...

Teenagers between the ages of 12 and 17 will be able to register to receive their Covid-19 jab from 20 October. This group will be given only one dose of the Pfizer vaccine, for now

Former US secretary of state Colin Powell dies aged 84

The 84-year-old died as a result of complications from Covid-19
Advertising

press releases

Loading latest Press Releases…
×