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FBI to help investigate murder of opposition leader Fernando Villavicencio in Ecuador

Ecuadorian police shot dead one suspect. Six others are in custody.

Fernando Villavicencio en

(Wikimedia Commons)

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"In the next few hours a delegation will arrive in the country," said Ecuadorian President, Guillermo Lasso, after announcing that the FBI had accepted his request for assistance in investigating the murder of presidential candidate Fernando Villavicencio.

Although the investigation into last Wednesday's attack is still open, the State Attorney General's Office reported that the Police shot dead one suspect, while six others are in custody.

Villavicencio, a conservative candidate and second in the polls for the presidential elections, was critical of corruption and socialism. In recent days he had reported threats from criminal gangs, pointing specifically to Los Choneros.

After his death, his sister, Patricia Villavicencio, spoke of a plot to prevent the journalist from uncovering corruption cases. She also blamed the government, former president Rafael Correa and "their criminal gangs" if anything should happen to her or any of her family members.