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ARGENTINA | 25-01-2023 15:44

Rugby players accused of murder suspected of running supportive Instagram account from behind bars

Investigators believe two of the eight former rugby players accused of beating 18-year-old Fernando Báez Sosa to death three years ago may be behind a supportive Instagram account pleading their case.

Two of the eight former rugby players accused of beating 18-year-old Fernando Báez Sosa to death in Villa Gesell three years ago have had their mobile phones seized by prison guards.

Rumours began circulating this week that they may have been running a supportive Instagram account anonymously from behind bars.

The information emerged on Wednesday (January 25) as closing arguments in the closely watched trial into the brutal killing were underway in Dolores. While investigators have not ruled out the chance that the account is being run by a relative or friend of the accused, they will now look into whether Blas Cinalli and Enzo Comelli had access to the Instagram profile.

The account in question, @rugbiers.zarate, has over 5,500 followers and, despite having no permanent posts on its Instagram feed, those in charge posted 24-hour stories in support of the rugby players. 

The description in the Instagram bio reads: "Enough social condemnation. No more lies. No more violence. Enough hatred."

On the profile, followers are asked to "pray to God and the Virgin" to protect the accused. They also called for their immediate freedom and for their families' peace of mind.

The account has since been suspended, but when it was active, it often posted religious messages such as: "Shall we organise a prayer chain?” In another post they wrote: "May the Virgin Mary and God watch over and protect the boys and their families this week and next."

Beyond calls for prayer, the profile also published other posts in favour of the accused sportsmen from Zárate. One post even called for an end to the "social condemnation" for those charged with the crime of the 18-year-old.

"It's a show, it's really sad to see the level of hatred they have for the kids. Was this a tragedy? Yes, but sadly it happens every day, it's just that this case has become such a media event that they are even going to use it for political purposes," reads one of the last private messages posted by this account on the social network.

The administrator of the account even goes on to tell users that it answers "only questions that are asked from the side of respect." One of the few queries actually answered by the account was about its stance in support of rugby players.

"I'm intrigued to know why you are so supportive of these kids," asked one user, to which the account replied: "Everything that happened hurts, but they are not monsters."

"Strength for the kids. From minute one they are no longer alone, we are here with them," added another user. 

At the time of writing, there has been no new comment from those behind the @rugbiers.zarate account.


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