Based for the past three years in Nicaragua, where he was reporting for several international media outlets including the British daily The Guardian, Carl David Goette-Luciak was targeted because of his coverage of the Nicaraguan political crisis that began in April.
In an aggressive online campaign of threats and intimidation, mostly waged by President Daniel Ortega’s supporters, Goette-Luciak was accused of working for the CIA, providing armed groups with material assistance and directly supporting the opposition.
He was forced to go into hiding after his home address was posted on social networks and calls were made for him to be murdered. The Nicaragua police finally arrested and expelled him on 1 October. He is now in the United States.
“The scale and the violence of the intimidation campaign against the journalist Carl David Goette-Luciak and his arbitrary expulsion from Nicaragua are both unacceptable and disturbing,” said Emmanuel Colombié, the head of RSF’s Latin America desk. “The methods used by President Ortega and his supporters to censor independent media pose a major threat to press freedom in Nicaragua.”
The Ortega government’s authoritarian excesses are making it very dangerous and complicated for independent and international media to work in Nicaragua. Reporters covering the political crisis and the street protests are exposed to threats, persecution and arbitrary arrest, and to being the targets of intimidation campaigns on social networks.