The Honduran police have made four arrests for the alleged involvement of these suspects in shooting to death environmental rights activist Berta Caceres in March.
Caceres fought against the construction of hydroelectric plants and mines on the indigenous territory that led to her death in March at her own place in La Esperanza, Honduras. Her murder sparked a domestic and international outrage, making it essential for her case to be a priority. The attorney general’s office confirmed on Monday the arrest of four people.
According to The Guardian, among the four arrestees, two had connections with the construction company contracted to build a hydroelectric plant against which the activist protested. The other two were the engineer from Desarrollos Energeticos (DESA), Sergio Ramon Rodriguez, who built the Agua Zarca dam and ex-DESA security detail head and retired military official, Douglas Geovanny Bustillo. The latter two were detained on Monday. Caceres successfully put a halt to DESA’s project and managed to shift residents and activists from there.
Police undertook 10 simultaneous raids in the morning in the capital of Tegucigalpa as well as the coastal cities of La Ceiba and Trujillo that prompted the arrest of the suspects.
Reports have revealed that Rodriquez had allegedly threatened the activist days prior to her death. Caceres led a protest against the project with the support from her group, the Civic Council of Popular and Indigenous Organisations of Honduras. The reason behind the protest was the river which was considered sacred by the local people of Lenca was the decided site for the construction of the dam.
DESA’s Hidroelectrica Agua Zarca released a statement where it expressed its surprise on the arrest of Rodriquez. According to Reuters, it stated that the man who had been arrested had no “material nor intellectual” involvement in the killing of the activist.
Caceres received the Goldman Environmental Prize in 2015 for her contribution to the prevention of the constructions of dams that could harm hundreds of indigenous lives.