Chihuahua operation nets 70 arrests, suspected cartel gunmen
Daniel Borunda | El Paso Times
Updated 4:27 p.m. MT June 15, 2017
A statewide operation targeting organized crime netted 70 arrests, including suspected drug cartel gunmen, Chihuahua officials said.
The arrests were part of an ongoing operation involving state police and the Mexican military, Chihuahua Gov. Javier Corral said at a Wednesday night news conference in Chihuahua City.
Three suspected drug cartel gunmen were arrested Monday near Cuauhtémoc, Chihuahua.
Courtesy Chihuahua attorney general's office
Officials said that the arrests took place between March 19 and Monday.
The arrests included three suspected gunmen arrested Monday near Cuauhtémoc, which is about 65 miles west of Chihuahua City
The state attorney general's office said one of the men had information regarding the mass shooting that killed six and wounded 22 others on June 3 at Chicho's Bar in Cuauhtémoc. The case still is under investigation.
The suspected gunmen, who were armed with assault rifles and wearing tactical vests, were arrested after a shootout with police, officials said.
Police seized six assault rifles, two handguns and a half dozen stolen pickups.
The men allegedly belong to a regional faction of La Linea cartel reputedly led by Carlos Arturo Quintana, alias “El 80."
Quintana has allegedly been involved in cartel infighting for control of the mountain region in western Chihuahua and allegedly declared war on the Chihuahua governor and threatened journalists in a banner hanged from a Chihuahua City bridge on March 30.
Quintana is wanted by the FBI in New Mexico on drug trafficking charges stemming from Operation Virus Maker targeting reputed Juárez drug cartel leaders in 2015.
During the state operation, police seized 74 vehicles, including 39 that had been reported stolen, 23 rifles, 16 handguns and five explosives, state officials said.
The seizures included five rifles, ammunition and a bulletproof vest in Juárez, officials said.
Six rifles, a handgun and drug-packaging equipment were seized in Villa Ahumada, which was the scene of an attack on a state police building last month.