Wednesday, May 29, 2024

Chihuahua gang leader arrested in LeBaron massacre that killed 9

Security forces have arrested a Chihuahua gang leader for the 2019 murder of the nine women and children belonging to the LeBaron family, an extended clan of Mexican American Mormon families who live in rural Sonora and Chihuahua.

Authorities arrested Roberto González Montes, 32, and two other suspects on Monday.

On November 4 last year, members of the family were traveling in a convoy of SUVs through the Sierra Madre mountains in Sonora when they were ambushed by armed civilians widely suspected to be cartel hitmen. The gunmen opened fire on the vehicles, leaving only some of the children alive.

In an area rife with frequent violence, much of it over turf wars between two rival cartels, the attack made news in both Mexico and the U.S. because of its seemingly senseless brutality. According to LeBaron children who survived the attack, one of the women got out of her vehicle to show the gunmen that they were women and children and was immediately shot dead.

Adrian Le Baron, whose daughter Rhonita Miller and her 8-month-old twins were killed in the attack, described the arrest in a tweet this week as “a step toward knowing the truth about who killed my children.”

LeBaron identified González as a leader of the La Línea, a gang based in Nuevo Casas Grandes, Chihuahua, located near the U.S. border.

La Línea is the armed wing of the Juárez Cartel, based in Ciudad Juárez. The group is known to run extortion rackets and other criminal activity in the region. It has been engaged in turf wars in Sonora with Los Salazar Cartel near the town of La Mora. Los Salazar Cartel is believed to be affiliated with the Sinaloa Cartel.

Source: The Guardian (en)

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