viernes, 29 de junio de 2012

Extortion gang, robbers held in Guatemala

Police arrested on 28 June 21 members of a gang that extorted money from bus drivers and petty tradesmen in several suburbs of Ciudad de Guatemala, the daily Prensa Libre reported on 29 June. Police said the group was run from prison by convicts. The daily published the names of detainees. On 22 June, police arrested in the district of Masagua near the Pacific coast six suspected highwaymen thought to have robbed cars and buses heading toward Escuintla, a town south of the capital, Prensa Libre reported. Separately on 28 June, six suspected robbers shot dead a man driving a delivery van in the Quesada district in the department of Jutiapa, near the border with El Salvador. The victim sold fizzy drinks.

Venezuela impounds television's assets

Venezuelan opposition forces denounced on 29 June a court order to seize the assets of Globovision, a private broadcaster critical of the socialist government of Hugo Chávez Frías, Europa Press reported. The Supreme Court ordered assets worth the equivalent of just over 5.6 million USD seized as part of legal action being taken against Globovision for its reports on a deadly prison riot outside Caracas in 2011. The channel was fined the equivalent of over two million USD in October 2011 following its report for allegedly breaking broadcasting regulations, but had challenged the fine. The opposition coalition of parties Democratic Opposition Table (MUD, Mesa de Oposición Democrática) denounced the embargo as a blow to liberties intended to intimidate and "depress" Venezuelans ahead of general elections scheduled for 7 Octobre. Chávez distrusts the channel and has dubbed it "Globoterror" for allegedly painting a grim picture of the state of Venezuela. The MUD said it was not Globovision that should be prosecuted but the president and certain ministers for "censuring" bad news and having allowed prisons to become "what they are, factories of corruption and death." The MUD will back the main opposition candidate Henrique Capriles Radonski in October's elections.

Mercosur not planning to expel Paraguay

Members of the trading block Mercosur (Mercado Común del Sur) were not envisaging Paraguay's expulsion following the parliamentary overthrow of its president Fernando Lugo, nor would they impose economic sanctions but suspend Paraguay's right to attend block meetings for now, a minister attending  Mercosur's meeting in Argentina said on 29 June. Argentine Foreign Minister Hector Timerman said in Mendoza that sanctions could "harm the Paraguayan people" for which reason the block's "Democratic clause" was being utilized to prevent Paraguay from attending Mercosur meetings, Europa Press reported on 29 June.

Kidnapped Mexican mayoress found dead

Marisol Mora Cuevas was found dead days after being kidnapped in the eastern state of Veracruz, agencies and Mexican dailies reported on 29 June. She was the mayoress of Tlacojalpán and member of the conservative National Action Party (PAN); she had been a member of Mexico's parliament in 2006. Her body, with apparent signs of torture and with hands tied, was found on 28 June by a road between Loma Bonita and Ciudad Isla, in Veracruz near the border with the central state of Oaxaca, the daily Milenio reported. The states of Veracruz and Oaxaca would reportedly investigate the crime together.