Cartel Gunman Confesses to 25 Murders in Northern Mexico
March 25th 2012 · 1 Comment
Arturo Saucedo Rodriguez, arrested on March 19 by agents with the state Attorney General’s Office, “confessed that he had been working for approximately six months for the Gulf cartel,” the council’s spokesman, Jorge Domene, said Friday at a press conference.
He said the detainee, alias “El Bufalo,” was part of a cell that participated in roughly a dozen attacks and that as a hit man he was paid 8,000 pesos ($627) every two weeks.
Saucedo confessed to participating in recent grenade attacks on two bars in the northern industrial city of Monterrey in which three people were killed, two of them small-time drug dealers for the rival Los Zetas cartel.
He also admitted to a role in the deaths of more than 10 taxi drivers whom the Gulf cartel had accused of working as “halcones” (informants) for the Zetas and confessed to a series of crimes against state prison guards, traffic cops and police who allegedly were collaborating with the rival drug mob.
Monterrey, which is home to many of Mexico’s industrial giants, had long seemed immune to a drug war that has left tens of thousands dead in recent years.
But since early 2010, it has been the scene of a brutal struggle between the Gulf cartel and former allies Los Zetas for control of the local drug trade, a turf conflict that has left nearly 3,000 dead.
Mexico’s drug war death toll stood at 47,515 from December 2006 to Sept. 30, 2011.
The murder total has grown every year of President Felipe Calderon’s military offensive against the well-funded, heavily armed drug cartels.
Unofficial tallies published in December by independent daily La Jornada put the death toll from Mexico’s drug war at more than 50,000.
A version of this column originally appeared in www.laht.com.
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