Mexican Journalist Fired for Exposing Government Corruption

Carmen Aristegui
AP Photo/Alexandre Meneghini

Mexico’s efforts to silence critical media have proven successful, resulting in the recent firing of one of the country’s few hard-hitting journalists, along with her staff.

Last week, a number of independent news outlets announced a team effort to create an anti-corruption outlet called #MexicoLeaks. The effort called for brave citizens to leak documents to the group, which, after being vetted, would be published by all the outlets in an effort to make a dent in Mexico’s ever-growing corruption.  The effort went viral though Twitter and Facebook. The news, however, quickly turned away from the effort when one of the group’s leaders became a target by her own outlet.

Carmen Aristegui, one of Mexico’s hardest hitting journalists, found herself at odds with her outlet, MVS Radio, when the company claimed that she and her team had abused their trust and used the company’s name without approval, according to a news release from MVS.

MVS fired a group of Aristegui’s staffers who had carried out a series of investigations into bribery at the highest levels of Mexico’s government, including the purchase of a mansion given to the wife of Mexico’s president Enrique Pena Nieto. The president had claimed that the multi-million dollar mansion was bought by his wife with her earnings as a local soap opera star and not through bribery in exchange for lucrative contracts.

“This battle, no one have a doubt about it, is for our freedom,” Aristegui wrote on her website.

Just days after losing her team, MVS also fired Aristegui, setting off a massive backlash of criticism from Mexico’s journalists. The one outlet that has remained quiet appears to be Televisa, which has strong ties to the ruling party.

The Mexican government has found itself in the midst of a public relations nightmare as the constant news about the non-stop violence and the widespread corruption continue to overshadow the government’s efforts to show any progress.

While journalism had been alive and well in the central part of Mexico, as Breitbart Texas had previously reported, a free press does not exist in border cities such as Matamoros or Reynosa, where cartel members and corrupt politicians have threatened and bribed outlets into silence. That lack of a free press has forced citizens in the border areas to rely on citizen journalists who use social media to get the word out. Breitbart Texas has recruited some of those journalists and given them an outlet through Breitbart Texas’ Cartel Chronicles.

As Breitbart Texas previously reported, despite a series of ongoing cartel wars that have led to large scale gun battles, and a constant increase in kidnappings and extortion, the Mexican government has continued to claim that the country is enjoying the highest levels of public safety in a decade.

Mexico is also trying to overcome the rising waves of violence in the state of Guerrero, which as Breitbart Texas previously reported, is home to the resort city of Acapulco. It is also home to the massacre of 43 education students who are said to have been butchered at the hands of local police and drug traffickers who were reportedly acting under the orders of a small town mayor.

Follow Ildefonso Ortiz on Twitter and on Facebook.


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