Stephania Cardoso: Missing reporter under Mexico government protection


The Mexican national flag flutters above Mexico City's Zocalo square.


Omar Torres

Crime reporter Stephania Cardoso and her 2-year-old son, reported missing in Mexico two weeks ago, are alive and under federal government protection.

Mexican President Felipe Calderon said Cardoso and her toddler son — who have been missing since June 8 — are being helped by federal prosecutors, but would give no other details, reported the Associated Press. Cardoso, who works for the El Zócalo newspaper in the city of Saltillo, had received threats leading to the opening of an investigation, special federal prosecutor Laura Borbolla told the New York-based Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ).

"We are relieved that Stephania Cardoso and her son are safe and unharmed," said Carlos Lauría, CPJ's senior program coordinator for the Americas. "We call on Mexican federal authorities to ensure that Cardoso can continue to report the news without fear of intimidation."

Cardoso was reported missing by her mother two weeks ago, said Zócalo Deputy Director Luis Mendoza López, according to CPJ. Mendoza also told CPJ that Cardoso covered crime for the paper for about two-and-a half-years. Her most recent work covered stories about petty crimes and traffic accidents.

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The AP also reported that Calderon spoke Friday at a ceremony where he singed a law requiring all crimes against journalists be investigated by federal prosecutors.

According to CPJ, drug-related violence has made Mexico one of the world's most dangerous countries for journalists. More than 45 journalists have been killed or disappeared since 2007.