Guatemalan Journo Killed On World Press Freedom Day Apparent Street Crime Victim

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By: Mark Fitzgerald

Police in Guatemala City arrested five members of a notorious Central American street gang for the killing on May 3, World Press Freedom Day, of Mario Rolando L?pez S?nchez, a producer for a nationally syndicated radio network.

The exact motive for the five alleged killers, who authorities say are members of the Mara 18 gang. Police say one of the suspects confessed to the crime.

The five suspects were arrested after raids on nine houses near the scene of the crime, police said, according to the Focus news agency.

L?pez was shot fatally as he walked from his car to his home in Guatemala City. He had just picked up a pizza. Police say the alleged killers later ate the pizza. They did not take his car or wallet, however.

L?pez was the producer of a political talk show for Radio Sonora. L?pez himself had never received threats because of the show, but the station’s director told the New York City press freedom group, the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ), that the station has been repeatedly threatened.

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