Digital news site GK journalist Karol Noroña flees Ecuador after death threat

  • Source: CPJ
  • April 17, 2023

"Ecuadorian authorities must thoroughly investigate a death threat against Karol Noroña, bring those responsible to justice, and ensure that criminal groups do not interfere with the work of the country’s press, the Committee to Protect Journalists said Tuesday [April 11].

On March 24, Noroña, a reporter for the independent Quito-based news website GK, met with a source who told her that the leader of a drug trafficking group had threatened to kill the journalist due to her reporting on organized crime and violence in Ecuador’s prisons, according to news reports and Isabela Ponce, GK’s editorial director, who communicated with CPJ via messaging app. Within 24 hours, Noroña fled Ecuador, Ponce said. She declined to provide more details about the nature of the threat to protect Noroña and her sources. 'The plan is for her to stay outside the country until her safe return is guaranteed,' Ponce said.

Ponce told CPJ that GK was still deciding whether to file a criminal complaint with the Attorney General’s office, partly because Noroña has reported on how some alleged drug traffickers and gang leaders may have received lenient treatment from that institution."

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