September 19, 2020

Judge orders arrest of the intellectual author of death of journalist Valdez

The Office of the Attorney General of the Republic (FGR) of Mexico reported Thursday that it obtained the arrest warrant of the accused of being the intellectual author of the death of journalist Javier Valdez.

Through a statement, the FGR indicated that, through the Office of the Special Prosecutor for Human Rights, it obtained an arrest warrant against Dámaso “L” from a Federal Judge of Control in the state of Sinaloa, northwest Mexico. for his probable responsibility as the intellectual author of the murder

The name given by the FGR refers to that of drug trafficker Dámaso López, alias “El mini Lic”, who is nephew of the drug lord Joaquín “el Chapo” Guzmán and who is currently being held in the United States on charges of drug trafficking.

In the note, the Prosecutor’s Office noted that as the accused was handed over to the US authorities. In July 2017 and is under criminal proceedings for other crimes in that country, the agency “has immediately initiated all the necessary steps to obtain the extradition of that individual.”

Last Tuesday, the organization Reporters Without Borders (RSF) informed in a statement that this Thursday the intermediate hearing would begin, that is, the process to validate the evidence in the case opened by the murder of Valdez, who was killed on May 15, 2017 in the state of Sinaloa.

The intermediate hearing in the case of Valdez, a reporter specializing in the follow-up of drug trafficking murdered at age 50, was postponed four times before, so it accumulates a delay in the criminal process of 13 months,

This hearing had been deferred since December 27, 2018, but federal criminal judge Edgar Rafael Juárez Amador unlocked its celebration on December 26, so that the case already adds “two and a half years of impunity in Javier Valdez’s family “, according to RSF.

The intermediate hearing “is fundamental” because it will discuss, among other issues, the “legality and constitutionality of the evidence of all parties: the prosecution, legal advisers and defenders of the accused.”

On May 15, 2017, in the city of Culiacán, Sinaloa, and on the occasion of his journalistic activity, Valdez Cárdenas was killed by twelve gunshots when he left the offices of his weekly newspaper called “Río Doce”.

At that time, investigations into the facts were initiated, which allowed the identification and obtaining of arrest warrants against Juan Francisco “P”, Heriberto “P” and Luis Idelfonso “S” for their probable responsibility as material perpetrators of said events.

However, “the most important part of this investigation, which was to locate and prove intellectual authorship,” was pending, said the FGR.

The murder of Valdez shocked Mexico, one of the most dangerous countries for the exercise of journalism and that recorded 47 crimes of reporters during the term of President Enrique Peña Nieto (2012-2018).

To remember the figure of Valdez and his colleague Miroslava Breach, also killed, the UN created in 2018 the Breach / Valdez Prize.

The award is given every May 3, Freedom of the Press Day, and precisely this Tuesday the call for the 2020 edition was opened, which will be the third since it was created.


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