A Mexican crime journalist was found killed in the eastern state of Veracruz on Thursday, just hours after he was kidnapped.
Victor Baez, the slain reporter, is the ninth media worker to be killed in Veracruz State alone in the past year and a half, according to the EFE news agency.
He was found dead in the Veracruz capital of Xalapa after it was said he had been abducted Wednesday evening. The body was discovered along a busy street in the city.
Veracruz State spokesperson Gina Dominguez told EFE that his murder “is an affront to the journalism profession, and it seeks to intimidate society and push back against a government determined to fight.”
She added that the attacks are intended to “intimidate society” and the Mexican government as a whole, and they will not dissuade the government from “combating criminal groups that seek to undermine our right to live in peace,” according to El Universal publication.
His death highlights the plight of media workers in Mexico, who face constant pressure, threats, and intimidation from drug cartels that want their dealings in the country kept secret.
Mexico is considered among the most dangerous places for journalists, with many deaths blamed on the cartels.
Veracruz in particular has been a battleground for the powerful Zetas and the Gulf Cartel—two of Mexico’s most notorious drug gangs.
More than 50,000 people have been killed in drug-related violence since 2006, when the government directed the army to crack down on the cartels.