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Honduran journalist murdered following reports on corruption

Nery Francisco Soto Torres/Facebook

Journalist Nery Francisco Soto Torres was shot to death on the evening of 14 August, in the district of La Conquista, Olanchito municipality, department of Yoro. Soto, 32, was a host and reporter for Canal 23, and a co-producer for the show “Cuarto Poder” on Radio Full FM.

The murder occurred when Soto “was trying to take his motorcycle into his home, when – from a house undergoing construction – unknown individuals shot at him repeatedly,” journalist Osmán Guardado told C-Libre. Guardado is Soto's former colleague at “Cuarto Poder” and a member of RAPCOS, an alerts and protection network for journalists and communicators.

Soto's neighbours transferred his body to to the Anibal Murillo de Olanchito Hospital. Fellow community members had difficulty processing the news of his death, given that Soto was a very appreciated individual.

Both the police and Soto's colleagues dismiss the theory that Soto was murdered as part of a robbery attempt. At the time of his death, the journalist was only wearing shorts, a shirt, and socks, and had no valuables on him.

Guardado says that the death of his colleague and friend has sparked outrage amongst journalists and the Olanchito community, given that Soto was very impartial and unbiased whenever he reported the news.

However, the last few subjects that Soto reported on had to do with the rationing of electricity, and corruption amongst government workers.

The murder of Nery Francisco Soto Torres brings the total sum of communicators killed in Honduras in 2014 to six: three in the Yoro, two in Olancho and one in Copan. On 10 May 2011, Francisco Medina Polanco was murdered in Morazán municipality, department of Yoro.

Please note that this is an abridged translation.

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