Six people have been arrested in Zacatecas after the murder of Juan Pérez Guardado, director of Social Development of the Fresnillo city council, brother-in-law of the State Governor David Monreal and Morena Senator Ricardo Monreal. Of those six, four have been linked to proceedings and two others were arrested after several search warrants carried out by the State Prosecutor’s Office. The State Prosecutor, Cristian Camacho Osnaya, has indicated that the detainees belong to a criminal group, without specifying the group to which they belong.
The wave of violence that prevails in Zacatecas has shaken the Monreal family twice in the same week. Two days before the murder of Pérez Gallardo, Jorge Antonio Monreal, nephew of the politicians, was also murdered by gunmen at the door of his house. Prosecutor Camacho Osnaya has indicated that “there is a solid line of investigation” while the possibility that both deaths are related to the same armed group is being considered, in response to the fight against drug trafficking in the State.
The Secretary General of the State Government, Rodrigo Reyes Mugüerza, stated in the same press conference that the two murders are “a reaction to the progress of the pacification process in Zacatecas” and an attempt to cause an impact at the national level. “It is very clear that they were intended as a way to destabilize and cast doubt on the progress of the strategy carried out by all corporations,” he declared. It is not the first time that organized crime has had an impact with a murder in this way. In November 2022, General José Silvestre Urzúa, coordinator of the National Guard in the State, was murdered during a confrontation with drug traffickers after only 10 months in office and after the anti-crime strategy was redoubled by order of the Governor Monreal.
Although authorities insist that homicides have dropped 75% in Fresnillo, the capital, since reinforcements from the Army and National Guard arrived, murders have continued to occur in the State. During this weekend alone, at least five other homicides were recorded in five municipalities. Among them, that of the band singer Jorge Beristáin and a woman, outside a bar in Guadalupe, an hour’s drive from the capital.
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