ISIS offers $50,000 reward for head of Bulgaria’s ‘migrant hunter’

ISIS has put a $50,000 bounty on the head of a self-styled ‘migrant hunter’ who organises gangs of vigilantes to patrol and hunt down illegal asylum seekers in Bulgaria.

Dinko Valev, 29, uses two armoured vehicles to patrol territory near the city of Yambol, close to the border with Turkey.

But now it has been revealed that the Bulgarian State Agency for National Security have warned him he is being targeted by the terrorists.

The agent said he was on a list of names for which ISIS was offering a bounty with payment being made once a video or picture confirming the deed had been provided.

The information about the ISIS offer was found on several Islamist websites which are reportedly funded by terrorist organisations.

Valev was described as the ‘leader of a paramilitary unit operating on the Bulgarian-Turkish border along with a dozen other men’.

It is thought ISIS targeted Valev because it was keen to be seen as a champion of migrants from the Middle East, especially Muslims, and is hoping to recruit some refugees for terrorist operations in Europe.    

But Valev appears undeterred by the threat, and even posted a media report about it on his website. 

Earlier this year Valev said he regarded every illegal migrant as a jihadist and dismissed claims he was terrorising his captives.  

He said: ‘I would describe it as simply a sporting activity. You can’t describe sportsmen as violent.’

In March Valev says people have been turning up with off-road trial bikes and dogs to help in the search for illegal immigrants. 

Others, including himself, also set off on their hunts on horses. When captured, the immigrants are then handed over to police, he said.

But the Helsinki Committee for Human Rights have demanded officials clamp down on the immigrant roundups being organised by Valev, saying what he is doing is illegal and branding him a criminal.

The Helsinki Committees for Human Rights are non-profit organisations devoted to human rights present in many countries, including Bulgaria.

In a statement to MailOnline in March, a spokesman said: ‘Valev admits that he has hurt these people. 

‘His victims included men, women and children fleeing Syria. In one incident, he forced them to lie face down for half an hour after terrorising them with death threats.

‘In another refugee roundup, he boasts about tracking a man for a while before finally capturing him. 

‘He repeatedly makes offensive remarks about refugees and it’s clear that he plans to expand his volunteer corps to focus on capturing more asylum seekers.

‘Even more worrying is that he wants the state to fund his operation and to pay for every captured refugee.

‘So he is not only spreading fear of refugees within Bulgarian society, and inspiring people to treat them with disgust and hostility, and to reject them, but he’s also asking for his actions to be supported.’ 

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