Adrian Silva Moreno's Facebook profile photo

The latest death of a reporter in Mexico, who was gunned down in broad daylight in the state of Puebla this week, highlights the incredible risks faced by journalists in the country and the difficulty in finding the motives that led to their murders.

On November 14, Adrian Silva Moreno was killed by three unknown gunmen as he returned from reporting on a story, according to El Universal. A 27-year-old former municipal police officer who was accompanying Silva was also killed. Silva had just finished covering a military raid on a warehouse allegedly filled with stolen fuel. 

According to the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ), just minutes before his death, Silva called a fellow journalist to tell her that he had just witnessed a shootout between the military and gunmen at a roadblock. It is unclear whether this shootout was connected to the military raid in the warehouse. Silva then added that he had found "something very important" while reporting on the fuel theft story.

Criminal groups are known to steal fuel from the pipelines of national oil company Pemex, and resell it to local gasoline vendors

Silva was a freelance reporter for various local media outlets, and also covered the crime beat for the online news and radio website Global Mexico. His murder marks the first time a journalist has been killed by an armed group in Puebla, according to CNN Mexico

InSight Crime Analysis

Over the course of President Felipe Calderon's six-year term, which ends in two weeks, Mexico has become the most dangerous country in Latin America for journalists. Article 19, a press freedom advocacy organization, has compiled a map of threats and violence against the Mexican press (see below), and counts 95 journalists murdered since 2006. The frequent attacks have stifled press freedom in the country, and fear of reprisals either from criminal groups or corrupt officials have forced many media outlets to engage in self-censorship.

While Mexico did pass the so-called Law for the Protection of Human Rights Defenders and Journalists in June, making violence against journalists a federal crime, a climate of widespread impunity remains. As of August, a special government investigative body set up to prosecute crimes against journalists had yet to obtain a single conviction. More recently, the official investigation into the murder of journalist Regina Martinez Perez, who was killed in Veracruz while working for the muckraker magazine Proceso, raised questions, as officials have not yet acknowledged the fact that Martinez may have been killed due to her extensive reporting on organized crime and police corruption.

Investigations

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
  • 6
  • 7
  • 8
  • 9
  • 10
Prev Next

InSide Colombia's BACRIM: Murder

InSide Colombia's BACRIM: Murder

  Life of a Sicario Anatomy of a Hit   The BACRIM's control over territories such as the north Colombian region of Bajo Cauca comes at the point of a gun, and death is a constant price of their power. In rural sectors, uniformed BACRIM armed with assault rifles still patrol in...

Colombia's Mirror: War and Drug Trafficking in the Prison System

Colombia's Mirror: War and Drug Trafficking in the Prison System

Colombia's prisons are a reflection of the multiple conflicts that have plagued the country for the last half-century. Paramilitaries, guerrillas and drug trafficking groups have vied for control of the jails where they can continue to manage their operations on the outside. Instead of corralling these forces...

Homicides in Guatemala: Analyzing the Data

Homicides in Guatemala: Analyzing the Data

In the last decade, homicides in Guatemala have obeyed a fairly steady pattern. Guatemala City and some of its surrounding municipalities have the greatest sheer number of homicides. Other states, particularly along the eastern border have the highest homicide rates. Among these are the departments of Escuintla...

The Lucky ‘Kingpin’: How ‘Chepe Diablo’ Has (So Far) Ridiculed Justice

The Lucky ‘Kingpin’: How ‘Chepe Diablo’ Has (So Far) Ridiculed Justice

José Adán Salazar Umaña is the only Salvadoran citizen currently on the US government's Kingpin List. But in his defense, Salazar Umaña claims is he is an honorable businessman who started his career by exchanging money along the borders between Guatemala, El Salvador and Honduras. He does...

Homicides in Guatemala: Conclusions and Recommendations

Homicides in Guatemala: Conclusions and Recommendations

Olfato. It is a term used quite often in law enforcement and judicial circles in Central America (and other parts of the world as well). It refers to the sixth sense they have as they see a crime scene, investigate a murder or plow through the paperwork...

Homicides in Guatemala: Introduction, Methodology, and Major Findings

Homicides in Guatemala: Introduction, Methodology, and Major Findings

When violence surged in early 2015 in Guatemala, then-President Otto Pérez Molina knew how to handle the situation: Blame the street gangs. 

Homicides in Guatemala: Collecting the Data

Homicides in Guatemala: Collecting the Data

When someone is murdered in Guatemala, police, forensic doctors and government prosecutors start making their way to the crime scene and a creaky, antiquated 20th century bureaucratic machine kicks into gear. Calls are made. Forms are filled out by hand, or typed into computers, or both. Some...

Nariño, Colombia: Ground Zero of the Cocaine Trade

Nariño, Colombia: Ground Zero of the Cocaine Trade

The department of Nariño in southwest Colombia is the main coca-producing area in the country and in the world. It is a place scarred by poverty and years of armed conflict between guerrillas, the state and paramilitary groups. Perhaps nowhere else in the country are the challenges...

El Salvador Prisons and the Battle for the MS13’s Soul

El Salvador Prisons and the Battle for the MS13’s Soul

El Salvador's prison system is the headquarters of the country's largest gangs. It is also where one of these gangs, the MS13, is fighting amongst itself for control of the organization.

Where Chaos Reigns: Inside the San Pedro Sula Prison

Where Chaos Reigns: Inside the San Pedro Sula Prison

In San Pedro Sula's jailhouse, chaos reigns. The inmates, trapped in their collective misery, battle for control over every inch of their tight quarters. Farm animals and guard dogs roam free and feed off scraps, which can include a human heart. Every day is visitors' day, and...