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Journalist receives death threats

(IPYS/IFEX) - On 15 October 2004, journalist Nelson Bocaranda said he had received death threats that were linked to comments he made regarding El Hatillo Mayor Alfredo Catalá's administration. Bocaranda made the comments on his programme "Los Run Runes de Nelson", broadcast on Onda 107.9 FM radio station. El Hatillo municipality is located in eastern Caracas.

Bocaranda told IPYS that Norberto Catalá, the mayor's father and a retired colonel, threatened him after he made several accusations regarding security issues in El Hatillo. "I live in El Hatillo and have made statements on my programme regarding the mayor's administration, security issues and the situation that people in the area live in," the journalist said.

On 14 October, Norberto Catalá, accompanied by a bodyguard, went looking for Bocaranda at his office in the La Lagunita business centre. Bocaranda was not at his office at the time. However, Catalá told Bocaranda's secretary, Elizabeth Ruiz, that he was armed and he would shoot the journalist if he did not retract his statements about the mayor's administration within 24 hours. He also left threatening notes for the journalist. Catalá's visit to Bocaranda's office was filmed by the office's security cameras. Catalá also has an office in the La Lagunita business centre.

On 15 October, Bocaranda registered a complaint about the incident with the Attorney General's Office.

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