Killing of Mexican police reporter makes nine journalists killed in Veracruz in one year

By Liliana Honorato

Another journalist was killed in Veracruz, México; his body was found inside of plastic bags in the early morning of Thursday, June 14, in the city of Xalapa, reported the Associated Process and the weekly Proceso. The search started the night before after the journalist was kidnapped while leaving his office, according to Reuters. It is believed that the journalist was probably a victim of organized crime, reported the newspaper El Economista.

The killing of journalist Víctor Báez Chino, founder of the news site Reporterospoliciacos.com and police reporter for more than 25 years, makes nine journalists killed since June 2011 in Veracruz, considered by Reporters Without Borders as one of the 10 most dangerous places in the world to practice journalism.

According to the news agency EFE, only a few days back, the journalist told the coordinator of Social Communication of Veracruz, Gina Domínguez, that no one could and should live in fear. "Let's not let them make fear a way of living for us," said Baéz. At a press conference, Domínguez said the killing of the journalist "insults the journalistic profession and also tries to intimidate society and retract the government's decision to fight crime," reported the news outlet InfoBAE.com.

Mexico is one of the most dangerous countries in the Americas for the press. During the beginning of June 2012, the digital newspaper El Arsenal reported that there is a new list circulating in Veracruz with the names of journalists that could be killed in the next days. Meanwhile, Stephania Cardoso, the journalist that disappeared along with her son on June 8, in the city of Saltillo, in the northern part of the country, is still missing. In an attempt to resolve the great risks that Mexican journalists face, Mexican legislators recently passed a constitutional reform that will allow for federal authorities to investigate crimes against journalists.

For more information, see this map about attacks against the Mexican press, made by the Knight Center for Journalism in the Americas.

Note from the editor: This story was originally published by the Knight Center’s blog Journalism in the Americas, the predecessor of LatAm Journalism Review.