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Former mayor assaults radio reporter during interview, falsely accuses reporter of assault

(IPYS/IFEX) - On 15 February 2007, journalist Efraín Chunga Lovón, host of the programme "Panorama Noticias", was assaulted by Víctor del Castillo Alarcón, former mayor of the district of Santiago, in Cusco, when the journalist was interviewing him in the radio station, in order to air the interview later on his programme, which is broadcast by Radio Salcantay.

The former official beat the journalist when asked about an accusation against him, filed during his tenure, of administrative irregularities. Del Castillo then destroyed the journalist's tape recorder by smashing it against the floor. The former mayor also hosts a news programme broadcast by the same radio station.

After the assault, Del Castillo filed a complaint against the journalist at the local police station, claiming that Chunga had attacked him.

IPYS verified that Chunga suffered bruising and that Del Castillo lied when he accused Chunga of assaulting him.

The journalist did not file a complaint against the former mayor for fear of reprisals.

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