The cast of Riverdale has asked for support in the bid to push for the release of their series executive producer’s father in Nicaragua, who has been held by the Central American authorities since July.
According to Deadline, showrunner Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa’s father Francisco, who is Nicaragua’s former foreign minister, has been sentenced in Nicaragua for treason and conspiracy.
The US State Department has said that the Nicaraguan authorities stopped Francisco from travelling to Costa Rica on 27 July.
His family hasn’t heard from him since then and worries that he has been “disappeared” as he was “an outspoken critic of Nicaragua’s current political regime—President Ortega’s dictatorship”.
On Wednesday (8 September), Riverdale cast members including Lili Reinhart, Cole Sprouse, KJ Apa, and Camila Mendes posted a video asking fans to use the #FreeFrancisco and #SOSNicaragua hashtags on social media.
They also called on them to sign a petition demanding the release of not just Fransico, but all political prisoners held in Nicaragua.
“We’re on the set of Riverdale,” said Appa, who portrays Archie Andrews in the show, in the video. “Over the years, all of us who have been part of making this show has become a family.”
Casey Cott adds: “And right now, someone from our family needs your help.”
“Roberto’s father and a dozen other activists were kidnapped and arrested. No one knows where they’re being held, if they’re being given food, water or medicine,” Reinhart said.
Mendes added: “We’re imploring you to use your voices to put pressure on the global community and rectify this miscarriage of justice, not just for Francisco, but for any political leaders who put their lives on the line to make this world a better place.”
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Last month, Aguirre-Sacasa shared a photo of his father on Instagram, writing: “Ten days ago, my father, Francisco Aguirre-Sacasa, who lives in Nicaragua with my mom, where they were both born, was arrested by the military police and ‘disappeared’.
“My mom’s okay, but we haven’t seen or heard from my dad since that terrible day. We believe he’s in a prison in Managua, but the truth is… we don’t know.”
The family has set up a petition, the Justice for Francisco campaign, calling for the release of all political prisoners.
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