IntMin: 424 Organised Crime Groups Operate in Bulgaria

Crime | June 23, 2016, Thursday // 13:11|  views

Bulgarian Interior Minister Rumyana Bachvarova. Photo: BGNES

Bulgaria's interior ministry is monitoring 424 organised crime groups which are operating on the territory of the country.

This was announced by Interior Minister Rumyana Bachvarova after a meeting of the parliamentary Internal Security and Public Order committee on Wednesday.

MPs held hearing of the political and professional leadership of the interior ministry in connection with the measures taken to counter organsied crime after the recent shooting targeting drug lord Dimitar Zhelyazkov.

The shooting, which occurred in the Black Sea resort of Sunny Beach earlier in June, claimed the life of one of Zhelyazkov's bodyguards and left several, including Zhelyazkov himself, heavily injured.

The interior minister revealed that apart from the additionally deployment of 183 police officers to Sunny Beach, each of the general directorates of the interior ministry in the country has posted higher level officials to Burgas.

Bachvarova confirmed that Zhivko Daskalov will remain head of the district police department in Nesebar.

In her words, the regional directorate of the interior ministry in Burgas had achieved the best possible performance results for last year and for the first quarter of this year.

According to the chairperson of the committee and former Interior Minister Tsvetan Tsvetanov, it can be concluded that there is neither political nor prosecutor or police umbrella over Zhelyazkov.

Tsvetanov added that the recent trend has been for the decentralisation of organised crime groups.

Similarly, Bachvarova said that ten years ago organised crime was highly centralised, with the operation of large groupings which should not be confused with today's organised crime groups.

In her words, at present crime groups were more decentralised, which necessitated changes to the working mode of the interior ministry and redistribution of its diminishing forces.

Bachvarova did not reveal much details on the shooting in Sunny Beach, but assured that the interior ministry is doing everything possible to ensure the safety of tourists at the resort.

She said that the ministry had taken many measures, mainly heightening police presence as well as conducting joint activities with other institutions such as the National Revenue Agency (NAP).

The interior minister pointed to the migrant crisis and terrorism as being two new formidable challenges which are additionally hampering the work of the interior ministry.

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Tags: Bulgaria, Rumyana Bachvarova, crime, shooting, Dimitar Zhelyazkov, Sunny Beach, Burgas, Tsvetan Tsvetanov, NAP, terrorism, migrant crisis


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