Eight Mexican federal officers—including two from the elite Federal Investigation Agency (AFI)—were killed April 18 in an attack on a police convoy transporting Sinaloa Cartel kingpin Jerónimo Gámez AKA “El Primo” (The Cousin) to a prison in western Nayarit state. The shoot-out occurred on the Tepic-Guadalajara highway, as Gámez was being transfered from Mexico City to the top-security Federal Center of Social Readaptation (CEFERESO), known as El Rincón. The ambush by a team armed with AK-47s was evidently an attempt to free Gámez, who was arrested Jan. 29 in Naucalpan, Mexico state.
Prosecutors say Gámez is a top operative of the Beltrán Leyva faction of the violently divided Sinaloa Cartel, and a cousin of fugitive jefe Arturo Beltrán Leyva AKA “El Barbas” (The Bearded One). (La Jornada, El Universal, April 19; AP, April 18)
Meanwhile, Mexico’s Prosecutor General of the Republic (PGR) says that the Archbishop of Durango, Héctor González Martínez, has an obligation to tell authorities what he knows about the activities of Joaquín Guzmán AKA “El Chapo” (Shorty), leader of the Sinaloa faction opposed to the Beltrán Leyva machine. PGR spokesman Ricardo Gutiérrez Nájera said anyone who has information that can help track down organized crime figures “has an obligation to denounce them to the authorities.” The statement comes after the Archbishop said publicly that “El Chapo” is living near the Durango town of Guanasevi, and that “everybody knows it, except the authorities.” Gutiérrez Nájera said an investigation could be opened into the Archbishop. (El Universal, April 18)
See our last post on Mexico’s narco wars.