'Riverdale' Showrunner Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa Launched #FreeFrancisco to Save His Dad

Leila Kozma - Author

Sep. 15 2021, Published 12:47 p.m. ET

Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa
Source: Getty Images

Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa, the Riverdale showrunner, has launched the #FreeFrancisco campaign on social media to bring to light the dire circumstances faced by Nicaraguan political prisoners like his father, Francisco Aguirre-Sacasa.

A vocal critic of the Nicaraguan government, Francisco worked as a columnist for the newspaper La Prensa, and as an official of the World Bank. He was taken to the El Chipote prison in Managua, Nicaragua, in July 2021.

Article continues below advertisement

Francisco Aguirre-Sacasa, the father of the 'Riverdale' showrunner, was arrested in July 2021.

Francisco and his wife were reportedly headed to the Peñas Blancas crossing on the border of Nicaragua and Costa Rica in July 2021 before his arrest.

As his daughter, Georgiana, told The Guardian, the border guards barred Francisco from leaving the country before seizing his passport. He was intercepted on the highway before being taken to the El Chipote federal prison near Managua.

Tweet supporting #FreeFrancisco
Source: Twitter
Article continues below advertisement

Roberto first updated fans about the harrowing predicament his family is in on Aug. 5, 2021. As he wrote on Instagram, he and his family weren't given information about Francisco's whereabouts in the immediate aftermath of his detention. Francisco was charged with treason and conspiracy later. The #FreeFrancisco campaign brings attention to the dire circumstances of Nicaraguan anti-government figures. It also aims to free Francisco and more than 30 others.

On Sept. 8, 2021, Roberto took to Instagram to share a short clip created with the help of the Riverdale cast. It features stars like KJ Apa, Madelaine Petsch, and Camila Mendes.

Article continues below advertisement
Source: Instagram

"My name is KJ Apa, and we're on the set of Riverdale," the actor said at the beginning of the clip. "Over the years, all of us who have been part of making this show has become a family."

The stars explain that Francisco was taken to prison overnight. His circumstances continue to pose a grave worry for his family, as it's uncertain if he has to stay there without food or medication. Roberto also launched a petition, Justice for Francisco Aguirre Sacasa.

Article continues below advertisement

Roberto's mother was allowed to visit Francisco in prison just before he was charged with treason and conspiracy.

“My mother was very shaken after their meeting. He'd lost weight and seemed somber and confused," Roberto told Deadline. "He's very isolated and has no idea what's happening in the outside world or with his case. No one's telling him anything. He told her to stop trying to send him food, water, and medicine because things aren't getting to him."

Source: Instagram
Article continues below advertisement

Roberto has been able to speak with the relatives of other political prisoners, who believe the conditions where they're being held are inhumane. The lights are reportedly kept on day and night to confuse the prisoners, and exercise is forbidden.

"We’ve been in touch with some other family members of people who have been arrested and comparing notes. Some things we keep hearing are that it’s freezing in the cells at night," Roberto said. "That the prison is infested with mosquitoes and lights in the cells are kept on 24-7 to disorient the prisoners. That they aren’t allowed to exercise or to walk in the prison yard even."

You can sign the petition to free Francisco here. Keep up the fight, Roberto.

More from Distractify

Latest Riverdale News and Updates

    Opt-out of personalized ads

    © Copyright 2024 Distractify. Distractify is a registered trademark. All Rights Reserved. People may receive compensation for some links to products and services on this website. Offers may be subject to change without notice.