Editorial: Everything Points Toward Veracruz

There are very specific grounds to link Espinoza's death with his activities as a photojournalist.

One suspect has been detained for the quintuple murder of Mexico City’s Colonia Narvarte in which graphic journalist Rubén Espinosa Becerril died. He had arrived there from Veracruz fearing for his life, claiming threats from governor Javier Duarte de Ochoa. As in other similar cases in this country, there are doubts that the crime investigation is really searching for the perpetrators, or is it only a maneuver to respond to popular outrage towards the crime, in which individuals plead guilty after being tortured.

The credibility of the authorities is a problem that afflicts all Mexicans. This case is not an exception; on the contrary. The initial comments that the motive might have been a robbery, later corrected to include “all lines of inquiry,” left a bitter taste. It is worth asking that, if the first impression of the crime scene pointed to robbery, why the possible Veracruz connection with the multiple killing was not expressed with the same emphasis and clarity.

There are very specific grounds to link Espinoza’s death with his activities as a photojournalist. His job took him to cover social protests, and he was invested in defending the profession and seeking those responsible for the 15 journalists killed under the Duarte government. The journalist has become an “inconvenient photographer” for the authoritarian vanity of the governor, who did not hesitate to warn journalists to “behave,” implying that there was a link between the media and drug trafficking. “We all know who is going down the wrong path,” Duarte said last June to the media.

Those words are tantamount to direct intimidation towards journalists from the higher ranks of the state government. It either reveals information apparently shared between drug leaders and authorities, or is an example of a misgovernment that can only warn its citizens, instead of protect them.

In this crime, all roads seem to lead to Veracruz: either its government, the drug dealers, or both. The investigation should already be focused on this state. The Duarte government’s record justifies such an action in order to clear up the case and put an end to the impunity in which Mexicans are trapped.