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JOURNALISM IN THE AMERICAS Blog

Brazilian crime reporter shot dead, becoming the third killed in 2013



On the morning of Friday, March 8, political journalist Rodrigo Neto was killed in Ipatinga, Minas Gerais, after having received several death threats, which, according to him, were connected to his reporting, reported the newspaper Vale do Aço. The crime occurred just two weeks after the killing of Mafaldo Bezerra Gois, a journalist also known for his crime reporting in Jaguaribe, Ceará. He was the second Brazilian journalist killed so far in 2013.

Neto was the host of the program Plantão Policial for Vanguarda radio, the broadcaster with the largest audience in the region, and a reporter on the crime beat for the newspaper Vale do Aço. He was shot twice by two men on a motorcycle outside a bar in the Canaã neighborhood, reported G1. The journalist was taken to a hospital in Ipatinga but succumbed to his injuries.

"Throughout his career as a journalist and radio host Rodrigo Neto was one of the most outspoken reporters when it came to investigating and denouncing crime in Vale do Aço," said a local newspaper.

The police have not yet determined a motive for the crime but said they are committed to solving the case, according to R7. The Minas Gerais Union of Professional Journalists and the National Newspaper Association released statements expressing their outrage over the killing and demanded authorities move quickly in their investigation.

With three journalists killed in just over two months, 2013 has already become a tragic year for the Brazilian press. In 2012, Reporters Without Borders listed Brazil as the fifth most dangerous country in the world for journalists, with five killed because of their reporting and threats against investigative reporters like Mauro König and André Caramante.



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