MEXICO: TV reporter and cameraman disappear

Gamaliel López Candanosa, TV Azteca Noreste, May 10, 2007, Monterrey
Gerardo Paredes Pérez, TV Azteca Noreste, May 10, 2007, Monterrey

TV Azteca Noreste reporter Gamaliel López Candanosa and camera operator Gerardo Paredes Pérez went missing on May 10 in the northern city of Monterrey, 440 miles (700 kilometers) from Mexico City, after reporting live on the birth of conjoined twins in a local hospital.

The two men checked in with the television station, a regional affiliate of the national network TV Azteca, at 4 p.m. but no one has heard from them since, according to Mexican press reports. Their Chevrolet compact car, which featured the TV Azteca logo, has also disappeared, according to press reports and CPJ interviews. The crew had not reported any threats, according to the state prosecutor’s office in Nuevo León.

TV Azteca notified local authorities on the evening of their disappearance. Daniel de León, the state prosecutor’s spokesman, said authorities believe there are links between the crew’s disappearance and organized crime, according to the Spanish news agency EFE. However, Mexican authorities officially stopped their search in July, Alfonso Teja, Azteca Noreste’s director, told reporters.

Teja said no kidnappers had contacted authorities, the station, or the families, according to the Mexican press.