A Mexican crime reporter Julio Valdivia has been found beheaded, the latest grisly murder of a journalist the world’s most dangerous nation for newsmen.
The 44 year-old journalist, who specialized in the “nota roja” journalism that focuses on gruesome crime and violence, was beheaded in the violent Gulf Coast state of Veracruz.
His body was found in the remote Tezonapa municipality, about 100 kilometers from the state capital, Veracruz.
A staff member at Valdivia’s Diario El Mundo local newspaper in Veracruz said initially it was suspected that Valdivia might have been run over by a train, but that was ruled out by the prosecutor’s office.
“Valdivia was found near the train tracks, beheaded and tortured,” said the newspaper staff member, who did not wish to be identified.
El Universal and several other local news outlets reported that Valdivia was beheaded, the fourth journalist death in Mexico this year.
In 2019, about half of all murders of journalists around the world occurred in Mexico, according to the Committee to Protect Journalists.
“We condemn the homicide of Julio Valdivia,” the Veracruz government said on its Twitter account.
A local media protection group known as the CEAPP said in a statement that Valdivia did not have extra protection measures as he had not reported facing threats to his security.
But the group demanded the authorities to “shed light” on the murder.