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Mexican court overturns conviction for investigative journalist's murder

A journalist in Mexico City holds up an issue of Proceso magazine, dedicated to murdered journalist Regina Martínez, May 2012.
A journalist in Mexico City holds up an issue of Proceso magazine, dedicated to murdered journalist Regina Martínez, May 2012.

Ivan_Duff Cuevas Hernandez/Demotix

Reporters Without Borders notes that, on 8 August 2013, a court in the eastern state of Veracruz overturned Jorge Antonio Hernández's conviction for Proceso investigative journalist Regina Martínez's murder on the grounds that it was based solely on a confession, possibly extracted under torture.

An illiterate man also known as “El Silva,” Hernández was given a 38-year jail sentence in April for her murder.

“This case is still unsolved,” Reporters Without Borders said. “The investigation must be started again and must be conducted in a serious manner, taking account of the victim's work as a journalist and with the aim of identifying and arresting both the perpetrators and instigators.”

Martínez specialized in investigating drug trafficking and local government corruption in Veracruz state for the newsweekly Proceso. A few days before her April 2012 murder, she covered a case implicating nine police officers in drug trafficking.

Shortly after Hernández's conviction in April of this year, Proceso accused current and former Veracruz state officials of plotting to kill Jorge Carrasco, a Proceso reporter who had been investigating Martínez's murder.

Mexico is one of the world's most dangerous countries for journalists, with a total of 88 killed in the past decade and 17 others missing. Most of these cases are unsolved and unpunished.

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