“Char” for Borderland Beat 

This article was translated and reposted from EL OCCIDENTAL 

The National Anti-Kidnapping Commission is already leading the investigations.

Román Ortega and Víctor Chávez / El Occidental

The journalist of Canal 44, Megaradio, Televisa and the newspaper El Informador, Jaime Barrera Gutiérrez, was deprived of his freedom on Monday afternoon after leaving the radio station for which he works in the Jardines de San Ignacio neighborhood, in Zapopan. This was the conclusion of the Jalisco Attorney General’s Office more than 12 hours after his disappearance was reported, and on Tuesday afternoon the Attorney General’s Office secured another car related to the incident.

A video of the radio station shows Jaime Barrera leaving the premises at the same time as a colleague; he then walks towards his gray Fiat Fastback 2022, which he had left parked in the vicinity. After walking a few steps he is lost in the image and further ahead a blue van is seen passing by.

According to the first investigations, the perpetrators apparently took him away in an SUV, and his vehicle was abandoned minutes later in the Fovissste unit, Zapopan. Jaime Barrera then became the first journalist to disappear in the history of Jalisco and where all of us, colleagues in the media and the guild, want him to return.

“There is information from those who were able to observe that the colleague was taken away after he left the headquarters, that is to say, a few meters from the headquarters from where he left, and from what we understand and from what we are told, he was heading precisely to his vehicle. So, the information we have is that he was taken from those surroundings and that is part of what we are looking for, videos, graphic images, to be able to determine and corroborate this version”, explained the prosecutor Joaquín Méndez Ruíz, who acknowledged that until 7:00 a.m. this Tuesday they were able to obtain the first testimonies of people who reported to 911 to have seen the moment in which he was taken away.

The testimonies, obtained more than 12 hours after the event, show that apparently they were waiting for him, they held him down, there was a struggle and they took him away in a blue SUV. One of those who testified mentioned that there were four subjects and at least one was carrying a rifle on his shoulder.

It is presumed that at least three of them got into the truck and another one took over the journalist’s vehicle.

Route

The images captured by the video surveillance cameras of the C5 urban shield established the route that Jaime Barrera’s vehicle followed from Colonia Jardines de San Ignacio to Fovissste Zapopan in Villa Maicera.

The prosecutor detailed that after the journalist was taken, the first image of the car was detected at 14:05 hours at the intersection of San Ignacio and Calzada Lázaro Cárdenas, in the aforementioned neighborhood. At 2:06 p.m. it passed on Lazaro Cardenas and Clouthier Avenue, in Camino Real neighborhood, Zapopan; at 2:13 p.m. the vehicle was detected at Pablo Neruda and Acueducto, in Colinas de San Javier neighborhood, in Guadalajara.

At 14:16 hours, the van was seen at Acueducto and Paseo de los Parques; at 14:19 hours at Acueducto and Avenida Patria; at 14:20 hours at Acueducto and Privada Soto Grande, in Lomas del Bosque; at 14:22 hours, at Acueducto and Privada Acueducto, also in Lomas del Bosque.

Finally at 14:26 hours it arrived at Juan Pablo Segundo and Lázaro Cárdenas street, already in the FOVISSSTE unit, and moments later it was captured at Lázaro Cárdenas and Manzana street, where it was located Monday night (21:29 hours) by elements of the Zapopan Police who already had the van’s characteristics.

The police cordoned off the place and called the Attorney General’s Office to take charge of the investigations of the case.

“Yesterday night-morning, I would like to inform you that the vehicle was processed. We were able to open the vehicle, the fixation was done with experts from the Jalisco Institute of Forensic Sciences. What seems to be some fingerprints were found, they are already fixed and in due time they will be sent to the folder with the corresponding report. The vehicle does not present any kind of damage to its structure”, commented the Prosecutor.

The complaint

It was at 9:00 p.m. on the same Monday that the relatives of the communicator went to the State Prosecutor’s Office to file the complaint before the Public Prosecutor’s Office. At that time the relatives requested that the Attorney General’s Office take over the investigation of the case and the search for the communicator.

Luis Joaquín Méndez Ruíz clarified that while the Federal agency determines whether or not to take charge of the investigation, the Jalisco Prosecutor’s Office will continue with the investigation.

“To clarify that between that happens and if it happens or not, we, the Special Prosecutor’s Office on Missing Persons is carrying out all the diligences and all the acts of investigation, it is trying to exhaust all the lines so that they are incorporated in the folder. If eventually the General of the Republic decides to exercise its authority, well, that it has all the information first hand and that in the first moments is decisive for the success of an investigation”.

Part of the investigations is to establish if he had any previous threat related to his journalistic activity. However, the Prosecutor pointed out that according to the statements made by the family on Monday night, no threat has been detected.

“Yesterday in the complaint they said that they are not aware that he had any previous threat, nor are they aware that he had had any problem or any situation, I repeat, of any threat due to the publications he published,” he added.

Méndez Ruiz explained that all lines of investigation are open, and none of them are ruled out. He stressed that the priority at this moment is the search and location of the journalist.

“We are starting, you know that all the lines are a priority, no matter how generic or general they may seem, we have exhausted all of them, that is to say, none of them are of less importance and precisely in order to be able to give some more conclusive information. But we would like to tell you that, well, what we are interested in right now is the location of the compañero”.

At press time, the Jalisco District Attorney’s Office reported that it had secured an SUV that was abandoned on the street of Hacienda de las Gardenias, in the Haciendas del Valle subdivision, in the municipality of Zapopan, and that it is directly related to the case. The experts worked on it at the scene to obtain fingerprints and other evidence. And apparently a farm was also secured, since National Guard personnel arrived to guard the area.

SOURCE: EL OCCIDENTAL