Alleged leader of La Linea drug cartel arrested in northern Mexico
CHIHUAHUA, MEXICO (BNO NEWS) — Mexican authorities on Thursday announced that one of the alleged leaders of the ‘La Linea’ drug cartel in Ciudad Juarez was arrested in the northern Chihuahua State.
Marco Antonio Guzman Zuñiga, also known as “El Brad Pitt” or “El Dos” (The Two), was detained on Wednesday by Federal Police officers in an operation in Chihuahua. Police also arrested two other suspects, Octavio Rodriguez Lugo and Jose Dolores Ordaz Seañez and seized explosive material and two assault weapons.
Rodriguez Lugo, 42, aka “El Viejo” (The Old), and Ordaz Seañez, 36, were allegedly responsible for safe houses and warehouses used by La Linea cartel. The operation took place at one of the group’s residences overnight without firing a single bullet.
Guzman Zuñiga, a former police officer, is one of the leaders of La Linea, the armed wing of the powerful ‘Cartel de Juarez’. There was a reward of $500,000 Mexican pesos ($42,000) for his capture.
The operation was part of a wider operation by the Secretary of Public Security (SSP) targeting the Juarez Cartel, its leader Vicente Carrillo Fuentes, aka “El Viceroy”, and La Linea, led by Jose Antonio Acosta Hernandez, who is also known as “El Diego” for whom there is a reward of 15 million Mexican pesos ($1.25 million).
La Linea was established by the Juarez Cartel as the drug war against the Pacific Cartel (Cartel del Pacifico) began in 2009. The two criminal groups have been fighting for territory control by setting armed gangs such as Juarez’ “Los Aztecas” and Pacific’s “Gente Nueva.”
Guzman Zuñiga, 34, was the second in command within La Linea and the right hand of Acosta Hernandez. Together, they planned and organized the group’s criminal activities including drug trafficking, car theft and murder.
In addition, “El Brad Pitt” is accused of bribing several police officers and government officials who covered up the criminal activities of La Linea. The 34-year-old suspect also controlled drug trafficking and other illicit activities inside the municipal prison in Chihuahua City as well as in the state prison (Centro de Readaptacion Social).
Furthermore, Guzman Zuñiga is wanted for ordering a number of murders and attempted murders as well as for the car bomb attack on the headquarters of Ciudad Juarez’ Federal Police on July 15, 2010. During Wednesday’s operation, law enforcement agents also secured a building which was acquired by Guzman Zuñiga
In May 2011, he appeared in a video recording along with other La Linea members who were seen murdering a rival gangster. On June 8, he allegedly participated in an attack on a police sub-director in Chihuahua; two policemen were killed.
On June 14, Guzman Zuñiga reportedly participated or directed the execution of Jose Alfredo Portillo Hernandez, head of the Ciudad Juarez police. The June attacks followed the arrest of Jesus Armando Acosta Guerrero, another leader of the “La Linea” drug cartel.
(Copyright 2011 by BNO News B.V. All rights reserved. Info: firstname.lastname@example.org.)
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