Journalist Killed Along With Wife And Son

VERACRUZ, Mexico -- A journalist, his wife, and their 21-year-old son were shot to death inside their home in this Gulf coast city Monday, authorities said. Journalist Miguel Angel Lopez Velasco and his family were shot with a 9 mm handgun, said Veracruz state prosecutor Jorge Yunis. Lopez Velasco, 55, wrote a column about politics and crime and was editorial director for the daily newspaper Notiver. His son, Misael Lopez, had been working as a photographer for the same newspaper. Yunis said investigators haven't determined a motive in the killings and no one has been arrested. Earlier this month, state police in Veracruz found the body of reporter Noel Lopez in a clandestine grave. He had been missing since March. The two reporters are not related. Police said Noel Lopez died of a blow to the head and that soldiers found his body after a man they arrested in the killings of several police officers confessed to killing him and led them to the body. Noel Lopez worked for the weeklies Horizonte and Noticias de Acayucan and for the daily newspaper La Verdad. The office of Mexico's Interior Minister said Monday that federal prosecutors will help the state attorney general with the case. Press freedom groups say Mexico is the most dangerous country in the Americas for journalists."The Mexican government must put an end to this endless wave of violence that is eroding the democratic system," said Carlos Lauria, senior program coordinator for the Committee to Protect Journalists in the Americas. Mexico's National Commission on Human Rights said on Monday that 70 journalists have been killed since 2000. In addition, it said 13 have disappeared. Other press freedom groups consider the numbers high and differ on the definition of who constitutes a journalist in Mexico's homicide figures. For example, the Committee to Protect Journalists says since 2000 there have 48 journalists killed and disappeared in Mexico, including three newspaper carriers who were killed for distributing newspapers.