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Mexican Prosecutor says Human Rights Activist Ochoa's Death May Be Suicide - 2003-07-19

A special prosecutor in Mexico says human rights activist Digna Ochoa, who was found dead in 2001, may have committed suicide.

Prosecutor Margarita Guerra says in a new report her investigation found no evidence the death was a homicide or someone wanted to harm Ms. Ochoa.

The report is to be presented to Mexico City's prosecutors office Saturday. The prosecutor also says Ms. Ochoa had emotional problems.

Ms. Ochoa's friends and family have rejected the conclusion. They say the lawyer-activist was murdered.

The former nun was found dead in October 2001 with gunshot wounds in her head and leg. A note found near her body threatened other human rights workers.

Ms. Ochoa represented environmentalists, people who said they were tortured by state forces, and Zapatista guerrilla sympathizers. She had been threatened in the past.

Human Rights organizations have criticized what they call the Mexican government's poor handling of the investigation.

The first prosecutor assigned to the case resigned. He also said he believed her death was a suicide.