Last Updated: Friday, 19 January 2018, 17:46 GMT

Journalists Killed in 2013 - Motive Unconfirmed: Carlos Alberto Orellana Chávez

Publisher Committee to Protect Journalists
Publication Date 1 March 2014
Cite as Committee to Protect Journalists, Journalists Killed in 2013 - Motive Unconfirmed: Carlos Alberto Orellana Chávez, 1 March 2014, available at: [accessed 21 January 2018]
DisclaimerThis is not a UNHCR publication. UNHCR is not responsible for, nor does it necessarily endorse, its content. Any views expressed are solely those of the author or publisher and do not necessarily reflect those of UNHCR, the United Nations or its Member States.

Canal Óptimo 23
August 19, 2013, in Suchitepéquez, Guatemala

Orellana's body was found in the southwestern department of Suchitepéquez with a bullet wound in his head, according to news reports. Unidentified assailants had abducted him from his car hours earlier after he had left his home. Authorities said they found Orellana's vehicle with all of his belongings and that the attack did not appear to be a robbery.

Orellana hosted two news programs on the local cable station Canal Óptimo 23, where he had denounced local corruption, and had previously worked for more than two decades at Radio Indiana de Mazatenango and at Radio La Venadita del Cuadrante, according to news reports.

Orellana had also served as mayor of the municipality of Mazatenango from 2000 to 2004.

Elmer Yat, chief prosecutor for crimes against journalists, told reporters that he would be investigating Orellana's journalism as a possible motive. Interior Minister Mauricio López Bonilla said the crime did not appear to be related to Orellana's journalistic work, but offered no further details, according to news reports.

Friends of the journalist told local reporters that in the days before his murder, Orellana had broadcast critical reports about human trafficking, water contamination, local government corruption, and death threats that his granddaughter had received, according to news reports.

Motive Unconfirmed: CPJ is investigating to determine whether the death was work-related.

Copyright notice: © Committee to Protect Journalists. All rights reserved. Articles may be reproduced only with permission from CPJ.

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