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Police investigation strengthens argument that killing of Brazilian editor was motivated by his journalistic work

After speaking with the victim's friends and relatives, investigators into the death of Brazilian journalist Paulo Roberto Cardoso Rodrigues have found stronger evidence that the reporter was killed because of his journalistic activities, explained the news website Midiamax. Paraguayan reporter Cándido Figueiredo said he was warned by the Brazilian police of a plan to kill the journalist, known as Paulo Rocaro, because of his coverage of drug trafficking on the border between the two nations.

The police suspect that the death of Rocaro was an act of revenge by individuals who felt threatened by his work, reported the newspaper Folha de S. Paulo. The journalist was shot to death Sunday, Feb. 12, in Ponta Porã (in the Brazilian state of Mato Grosso do Sul), where he was editor of the newspaper Jornal da Praça and the news website MercosulNews.com.

According to the police investigations, he was an "aggressive journalist" on criminal and political topics. Paraguay's National Police was also notified to help apprehend those responsible for the crime.

On Wednesday, Feb. 15, the Special Rapporteur for Freedom of Expression, part of the Organization of American States, published a statement condemning the killing, added Folha de S. Paulo.

Meanwhile, in Pernambuco, police finished the investigation into the killing of radio journalist Luciano Pedrosa and apprehended the main suspects of the crime committed in April 2011, reported the news portal G1. One of the case's investigators confirmed that the killing was motivated by Pedrosa's reporting on drug trafficking in the region.

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