Yolanda Ordaz de la Cruz

Beats Covered:
Local or Foreign:

The decapitated body of veteran
police beat reporter Ordaz was found at 4 a.m. on July 26, two days after she
was seized by armed men as she left her home. The body was found near the
offices of the newspaper Imagen.

In a press conference, state
prosecutor Reynaldo Escobar Pérez said Ordaz’s murder was not linked to her
work and that the evidence indicated her killers were members of organized
crime. He also suggested the journalist might have had ties to organized crime.
Notiver immediately called for the prosecutor’s resignation in an
editorial, saying, “We strongly reject this accusation and designate it as
unfair, irresponsible, and stupid.”

Authorities appeared to take a
broader view of the investigation in their subsequent statements. A spokeswoman
for the prosecutor’s office, Magda Zayas, told CPJ the journalist’s work was
being considered as a possible motive.

On August 5, Veracruz Gov. Javier Duarte de Ochoa said
authorities were pursuing multiple lines of investigation. He said
investigators found an identification card belonging to Ordaz among the
possessions of two unidentified criminal suspects killed in a military
operation earlier that week, press reports said. Mexico’s Human Rights
Commission said it would investigate Ordaz’s killing, The Associated Press

A note found with Ordaz’s body
seemed to connect her murder to the killing in June of
well-known columnist Miguel Angel López Velasco, the spokeswoman Zayas said.
She said the note, signed “Carranza,” said: “Friends can also betray you.”
Reporters in Veracruz told CPJ that the gruesome killing and the placement of
the body near a newspaper appeared to be an ominous message meant for the