Brazilian blogger's political cartoon is no laughing matter for local mayor, who is threatening to sue

Journalist and mayor of the city of Londrina in the Brazilian state of Paraná, Homero Barbosa Neto, has demanded the removal of a political cartoon published on a blog criticizing the city government, reported Blog do Esmael.

The blog Paçoca com Cebola by journalist Claudio Osti posted the politician's threat to sue the blog if the cartoon depicting Barbosa Neto with a hatchet in his hand, an allusion to trees cut down in the Londrina forest for a public work, was not removed.

"Intentionally trying to ridicule a public official, as seen in the cartoon, runs counter to the values of journalism and goes beyond criticism," said the mayor's lawyer, Cláudia Rodrigues, in the statement.

"I can't believe that a cartoon with Mayor Homero Barboa Neto holding a hatchet is offensive. He does, nevertheless, have the right to complain. But as a public official, he's going to be the subject of criticism. As a police reporter, and TV and radio host, he's made more acerbic criticisms than what's on the blog. So excuse me lawyer Cláudia Rodrigues, but I don't see a reason to take down the cartoon," Osti responded on his blog.

Journalist José Pedriali wrote on his blog, "many journalists are being sued by the mayor, and he's a journalist!" Pedriali questioned the presence of the mayor's lawyer in press conferences and remembers also being served papers by the lawyer two months ago.