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A reporter for one of Paraguay’s largest independent newspapers and his assistant were killed in an attack in an eastern province known for drug trafficking and timber smuggling.

Pablo Medina, a correspondent for the newspaper ABC Color, and his assistant Antonia Almada, were stopped by armed men after returning from reporting on indigenous settlement of Ko’ê Porã, about 155 miles (250 kilometers) east of the capital Asuncion, the press freedom group Reporters Without Borders said. Medina was asked to identify himself and then was shot several times in the head and chest.

Medina’s coverage of drug trafficking in the country had led him to receive numerous death threats. He had previously been guarded by a police escort, a precaution that was stopped in September 2013, according to ABC Color.

Medina’s brother, radio journalist Salvador Medina, was also killed in the same part of Paraguay in 2001 after criticizing timber smugglers in the region. A man was convicted of the crime and sentenced to 25 years in jail, though Medina’s family says they believe those who ordered the killing have not been prosecuted, according to the Committee to Protect Journalists.

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