On May 9, 2022, Yesenia Mollinedo Falconi, director of a weekly publication El Veraz, and Sheila Johana García Olivera, reporter of the same publication, were found slain in the Mexican state of Veracruz. Mollinedo and García were shot dead by unidentified assailants while getting into a car outside a convenience store in the town of Cosoleacaque. According to media reports, Mollinedo’s brother said the journalist had received threatening phone calls ordering her to remove crime-related stories from her news portal and that, more recently, she had covered alleged abuses of power related to the Cosoleacaque mayor’s office. In the months leading up to the murder, Mollinedo had been threatened several times and followed by unidentified men. Over the years she had received multiple death threats due to her reporting. Initial police reports stated that the murders were possibly linked to the work of Mollinedo and García. On June 6, the office of the Veracruz state prosecutor (FGE) announced in a Facebook statement that a suspect, identified only as Armando N., alias “El Trascabo,” had been arrested in connection with the killings. The arrest of a second suspect, identified only as Víctor Manuel N., alias “El Calaco,” was announced on June 8, in another statement published by the FGE on Facebook. Neither statement provided further details about the suspects’ identities or motives.
Yesenia Mollinedo Falconi, Mexico
May 9, 2022