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Murder, Corruption, and Inciting Financial Panic on Twitter

 by Bennett Gordon


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Guatemala has been on edge since a video of the murdered lawyer Rodrigo Rosenberg surfaced, in which Rosenberg blames Guatemalan President Álvaro Colom for his anticipated assassination. Guatemalans turned to the internet to express their outrage, leading to the arrest of one Twitter user, Juan Ramsés Anleu Fernández, for inciting “financial panic.”

The posthumous video by Rosenberg began, “If you are hearing or seeing this message it’s because I was assassinated by President Álvaro Colom.” Rosenberg implicated a number of Colom’s associates, telling a story of corruption and murder in the quazi-government bank Banrural. In response, Juan Ramsés Anleu Fernández, an IT employee known on Twitter as Jeanfer, advocated that people take their money out of Banrural and “break the banks of corrupt people,” which may have led to Fernández’s arrest. 

Fernández is the first person to be arrested for inciting financial panic, according to the Guatemalan newspaper Prensa Libre, though many anti-Banrural messages have been circulating on the internet. BoingBoing reports that Twitter users have taken to reprinting (or retweeting) Fernández’s message as a form of protest against the arrest and the government.

You can watch Rosenberg’s video with English subtitles below:

 

Sources: Prensa Libre, BoingBoingTwitter