Anabel Hernández is a leading investigative journalist in Mexico. She has dedicated the last 13 years of her 23-year career to investigating Mexican drug cartels and corresponding corruption and abuses of power within the Mexican government. She is the author of five books. The best known, Los Señores del Narco (Grijalbo, 2010) was translated into English in 2013 under the title Narcoland. The Mexican Drug Lords and their Godfathers. The book exposes thedeep complicity between drug cartels, Mexican businessmen and top public officials. Upon the book’s publication, Hernández, her family, and her sources suffered a series of attacks and acts of intimidation that have gone unpunished to date.
In 2001 Hernández received the National Journalism Award and in 2003 she was named a laureate by the UNICEF Regional Office for Latin America and the Caribbean, Agency EFE, and the Santillana Foundation in recognition of her reporting on the sex-trafficking of Mexican girls in the agricultural fields of San Diego, California. In 2012, she received the Golden Pen of Freedom award from the World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers (WAN-IFRA), whose Board noted that “Mexico has become one of the most dangerous countries in the world for journalists, with violence and impunity remaining major challenges in terms of press freedom. In making this award, WAN-IFRA recognizes the strong stance Ms. Hernández has taken, at great personal risk, against drug cartels. Her actions help ensure the development of good, unrestricted investigative journalism in the region.”
A 2014 recipient of the Voice of the Voiceless Award from Annunciation House in El Paso, Texas, the Netherlands Association of Journalists also granted her the Hans Verploeg Memorial Fund award for exposing corruption in Mexico, where the boundaries between organized crime, government, and the police are veritably indistinguishable. Reporters without Borders named her one of “100 information heroes” in the world in 2014.
She was twice named a fellow in the Investigative Reporting Program at the University of California, Berkeley, in 2014-2015 and 2015-2016. Supported by the IRP, she has spent the last 21 months leading investigations into the 2014 attack and disappearance of students from the rural teacher’s school Raúl Isidro Burgos.
She has collaborated with The Guardian, Le Monde, La Repubblica, La Stampa, Reforma, Proceso, Univision and Telemundo and her investigations into drug trafficking and corruption have been referenced by prominent world media outlets including the BBC, The New Yorker, CNN, Aljazeera, NBC, etc.
She is currently collaborating with leading Mexican news magazine Proceso during her time as a Visiting Scholar in the Department of Spanish and Portuguese at UC Berkeley.
The most recent work on Ayotzinapa of Visiting Scholar Anabel Hernández: