SOFIA: Five Syrians and a Bulgarian have been charged with financing terrorist groups in the Middle East with 25 million euros ($28.4 million), Bulgaria’s attorney general said Saturday.
“The group transferred at least 25 million euros to terrorist organizations over four years,” Rumiana Arnaudova, a spokeswoman for the attorney general said.
They were also charged with “preparing terrorist acts in another country,” she said.
The money was moved about by the “hawala” system, an informal method of payment based on trust that is far more difficult to trace than bank transfers.
Deputy Attorney General Ivan Guechev said such a network was “without precedent in the European Union.”
The money transferring network operates in many European countries and has facilitated the movement of 100-300 million euros per year, according to sources close to the enquiry cited in the Bulgarian 24 Chasa newspaper.
The six charged make up part of a haul of 43 people arrested in seven Bulgarian cities and towns on Friday.
The group also delivered at least 100 vehicles, bought in Bulgaria, to terror groups in Syria, Arnaudova said.