Three photographers who had covered organized crime and drug violence in the Mexican state of Veracruz were found dead yesterday, AP reports. The bodies of Guillermo Luna Varela, Gabriel Huge and Esteban Rodriguez were recovered from a wastewater canal near the port city of Veracruz, about 250 miles east of Mexico City. Their bodies had been dismembered and stuffed into black plastic bags. The Veracruz Attorney General’s office also reported that their bodies showed signs of torture.
Their deaths, discovered on World Press Freedom Day, bring to seven the number of journalists killed in Veracruz in the past year and a half. “Veracruz has seen a wave of lethal anti-press violence that is sowing widespread fear and self-censorship,” Carlos Lauria of Committee to Protect Journalists said in a statement. Lauria called on Mexico’s government “to end the deadly cycle of impunity in crimes against the press.”
Luna was a photographer on the crime beat for the web site veracruznews.com.mx who was last seen on Wednesday May 2. He was the nephew of Huge, a journalist who had been working for the local newspaper Notiver until he fled Veracruz after two of the newspaper’s reporters were murdered last year. According to a fellow journalist who spoke to the AP on the condition of anonymity, Huge had recently returned to the state. Esteban Rodriguez had been a photographer with the newspaper AZ until he too fled; according to some news reports, he had recently been working as a welder. Also found on the scene was the body of Luna’s girlfriend, Irasema Becerra.
Photographer Mathias Depardon, who was arrested and detained by Turkish police on May 8, has begun a hunger strike to protest his detention, Reuters and other news outlets report. Depardon, a French citizen based in Istanbul, was arrested while on assignment for National Geographic photographing in the town of Hasankeyf. An order for Depardon’s deportation... More ›
Photographers and filmmakers looking to partner with nonprofits shouldn’t count on funding from those organizations, a new survey of nonprofits by Blue Earth Alliance suggests. According to the survey, many nonprofits hire professional photographers infrequently, relying instead on images made by staff and volunteers, or on images donated by professional photographers. The survey was released... More ›
Yesterday, photographer Souvid Datta was accused of having manipulated a photo he took in 2013 at a brothel near Kolkata, by Photoshopping into his photo a a section of an iconic photo by Mary Ellen Mark. After the accusation was published yesterday on PetaPixel, editors at PDN reviewed the portfolio he submitted to PDN’s 30 which we... More ›