Trial begins against former mayor accused of masterminding journalist's killing in 2004 in Peru

The criminal court of Lima, Perú, began a new trial for the killing of a journalist, named Alberto Rivera, who was shot by hitmen in April 2004 after denouncing a mayor for corruption, according to La República.

The prosecutor's office is seeking a 20-year sentence in prison for Luis Valdez, the ex-mayor of Pucallpa in the province of Coronel Portillo, for planning the journalist's murder. The prosecutor also is seeking monetary reparations for the victim's family. In 2010, Valdez was condemned and then later absolved for lack of evidence in the killing of the reporter, but in February the Supreme Court ordered Valdez to face a new trial.

Valdez is under house arrest from another case involving alleged money laundering coming from selling cocaine to Mexican and Colombian drug cartels, according to Radio Programas del Perú (RPP).

The court will call journalists from Lima and Pucallpa as witnesses because they knew Rivera, a presenter for the radio program "Transparency" and a harsh critic of Valdez, reported the news agency EFE.

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.