Wednesday, December 6, 2023

Cartel delivers on threat against bands; Metepec Fair suspended

A México state fair was shut down after a cartel followed through on its threat of violence against performing musicians.

A bus carrying members of a band was attacked by gunfire on Friday following threats against musicians performing at the Metepec Fair in México state. Organizers then suspended the event, which had a star lineup of Mexican musicians.

The bus in which the band La Adictiva was traveling was attacked on the Toluca-Palmillas highway. 

The threat was made on two narco banners hung on overpasses around Metepec on Friday morning. Signed by the Familia Michoacana it was directed at fair promoter Mario García in a possible case of unpaid extortion. 

“Urgent message: We inform all the artists who were going to perform in the Metepec Fair not to perform at that venue, to avoid the spilling of innocent blood including theirs … due to the actions of that bum, the businessman Mario García, they are prohibited from performing. Respect our organization and we will respect your lives. Familia Michoacana,” the banners read.

The fair’s organizing company MG Diamante announced the suspension after artists pulled out following the attack. Musicians Pancho Barraza, Christian Nodal, Julión Álvarez, La Arrolladora and Alfredo Olivas were among those set to perform. 

“We are concerned about the safety and integrity of all attendees, press, artists, employees and workers who work with us at this event,” Diamante said in a statement.

Security authorities detained two people in relation to the narco banners, but no arrests were reported for the attack.

A food vendor with a stall inside the venue said he was frustrated at the lost income. “This pandemic has cost us a lot … without events. These sales are what we live for. We had a week [of operation] but we did not get back all that we’d invested,” he said. 

The fair opened October 29 and was scheduled to run until November 14.

Refunds for canceled shows will be available at the box office on November 15.  

With reports from Reforma 

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