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Comedy show reporters assaulted; lawyer insults journalists and hits photographer

(IPYS/IFEX) - On 1 July 2009, two reporters from the comedy show "Caiga Quien Caiga" were assaulted in two separate incidents. Felipe Andreoli was reporting on a football match between the Internacional and Corinthians teams in the Beira-Rio stadium, in Porto Alegre, southern Brazil, when he was insulted and beaten by a group of approximately 20 fans, who accosted him at the entrance to the stadium's press area.

A security guard came to his rescue. Andreoli said that the fans demanded that the comedy show refrain from making jokes about the Internacional team.

The other "Caiga Quien Caiga" reporter, Danilo Gentili, was assaulted in Brasília when he was attempting to interview Senate president José Sarney. In order to prevent the reporter from getting close to Sarney, security guards pushed him hard enough that he fell to the floor.

Even though the incident was videotaped, the director of the Senate's police contingent said he pushed Gentili out of the way because he was blocking Sarney's passage. He said that the journalist fell to the ground on purpose.

In a separate incident, on 1 and 2 July, lawyer Francisco Rogério Del Corsi insulted and struck journalists and photographers who were covering the case of one of his clients, Camila Dolabella Silveira, who had been accused of murdering her cousin eight years ago in Ouro Preto, in the state of Minas Gerais. The lawyer had submitted a request asking that the press not be allowed to be present during the hearings in order to protect his client from public scrutiny.

On 1 July, when he noticed the presence of journalists at the judicial headquarters, the lawyer accused them of being sensationalists and vagrants, and complained that they are allowed to work even if they do not belong to a professional journalists' association.

On 2 July, Del Corsi struck photographer Emmanuel Pinheiro, of the newspaper "Estado de Minas", and insulted Bruno Figuereido, a photojournalist for the newspaper "O Tempo". Pinheiro and Figuereido both filed complaints against Del Corsi at the local police station.

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