Influential Hounduran journalist kidnapped

journalist from the most influential Honduran radio station was kidnapped in the capital of Tegucigalpa, early in the morning of Wednesday, May 9, reported the newspaper La Prensa.

While he was driving to work, journalist Ángel Alfredo Villatoro of the HRN radio station was blocked by three cars with six armed men who forced him out of his vehicle and kidnapped him at gunpoint, reported HRN. The journalist's car was left abandoned in the streets of a residential area.

Villatoro is considered one of the most influential journalists in Honduras, according to the newspaper Proceso.

The radio station said that five hours after the incident, the kidnappers still had not communicated with the radio station nor with the journalist's family, according to the news agency EFE. Meanwhile, the local police are performing an intense search operation to locate the journalist in Tegucigalpa and surrounding areas, reported the newspaper El Heraldo.

In May of 2009, another journalist from HRN, Andrés Torres, was kidnapped for 18 days, and the incident still remains unsolved, according to the news site Centinela Económico.

Honduras is considered the second-most dangerous country in the Americas for the press. According to the UN, Honduras is also the most violent country in the world, with a rate of 86 homicides for every 100,000 inhabitants. For more information, see this Knight Center for Journalism in the Americas map about attacks against the Central American press.