Oct 9, 2012

Mexican Navy Says It Killed Ruthless Gang Kingpin

NY Times: By RANDAL C. ARCHIBOLD. MEXICO CITY — The Mexican Navy confirmed on Tuesday that it had killed Heriberto Lazcano, the founder and the principal leader of the Zetas, one of the most violent criminal gangs to terrorize the country in years.

But in a striking twist, an armed group quickly stole the body, a state prosecutor said Tuesday, leaving the authorities struggling to explain how such a major blow against Mexico’s criminal organizations could turn into an illustration of their persistent strength.

The navy said that it had killed Mr. Lazcano in a battle between marines and men armed with guns and grenades on Sunday afternoon in Coahuila State in northern Mexico.

His death may be one of President Felipe Calderón’s biggest victories against drug and organized-crime groups, and it comes two months before the president ends his six-year term with a legacy marked by an escalation of the fight against gangs and the brutal violence they have wrought. Read more.

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