Assassination of Ecuadorian Prosecutor Investigating TV Station Attack Raises Concerns

Assassination of Ecuadorian Prosecutor Investigating TV Station Attack Raises Concerns

Tragic End to a Prosecutor’s Investigation:

Cesar Suarez, a prominent Ecuadorian prosecutor tasked with investigating an armed attack on a TV station earlier in January, met a tragic end as he was gunned down in a professional hit while driving through Guayaquil.

Suarez’s untimely death raises concerns about the risks faced by those involved in investigating criminal activities.

Specialist Investigator Targeted:

Cesar Suarez, part of a specialized investigative unit combatting transnational organized crime, became a target for a professional hit.

He had been actively involved in various high-profile criminal probes, including the investigation into a recent live TV hijacking incident that occurred on January 9 at TC Television in Guayaquil.

Violent TV Station Hijack – Suarez’s Involvement:

The live TV hijack Suarez was investigating involved hooded gunmen storming TC Television, firing shots during a live broadcast.

Journalist Jose Luis Calderon, present during the incident, revealed being threatened with an improvised explosive by the intruders.

Suarez had played a crucial role in questioning suspects and uncovering details related to the attack.

Lack of Police Protection – Suarez’s Statement:

In an interview just a day before his death, Suarez disclosed to an Ecuadorian newspaper that he lacked police protection, despite his involvement in probing the 13 suspects linked to the TV station attack.

The revelation adds to the concerns about the safety of those investigating organized crime in Ecuador.

Government’s Firm Stance – Attorney General’s Response:

Ecuador’s Attorney General, Diana Salazar, responded to Suarez’s assassination, asserting the government’s unwavering commitment to combating organized crime, criminals, and terrorists.

Salazar emphasized that these incidents would not deter their dedication to Ecuadorian society.

Backdrop of Increased Violence – Escape of Gang Boss:

The attack on TC Television marked one of the significant criminal acts following the prison escape of gang boss Adolfo Macias, alias Fito, on January 7.

The subsequent state of emergency imposed by President Daniel Noboa highlighted the escalating violence in Ecuador.

The fugitive leader of the Los Choneros gang remains at large.

Gang Involvement and International Connections:

The TV studio raid, attributed to a gang named Los Tiguerones, has been linked to the kidnapping of British millionaire businessman Colin Armstrong.

The surge in violence in Ecuador is often associated with its role as a crucial outlet route for cocaine from Peru and Colombia.

Domestic drug gangs, forming alliances with Mexican cartels, contribute to the escalating criminal landscape.

Conclusion – Escalating Violence’s Toll:

Cesar Suarez’s assassination underscores the risks faced by law enforcement officials in Ecuador combating transnational crime.

The complex interplay of drug trafficking, gang activities, and international connections continues to pose challenges, demanding a concerted effort to address the root causes of the escalating violence.