The drug lord who hosted a party at a maximum-security prison in Jalisco enjoys no privileges nor does he control the institution, the state Attorney General said in a television interview.
The Grupo Milenio news agency yesterday published a copy of a video that shows Puente Grande prison inmates freely enjoying themselves at a party organized by José Luis “El Chelo” Gutiérrez Valencia, supposedly held on a Sunday afternoon between December 2015 and March 2016.
But Attorney General Eduardo Almaguer Ramírez told Milenio that the narcofiesta actually took place in June 2013, and had been authorized by then-warden Enrique Huerta Balcázar.
The party, he explained, celebrated Father’s Day and the one-year anniversary of the death of a son of Gutiérrez, a leader of the Jalisco New Generation Cartel.
Huerta was fired in November of the same year for committing several irregularities as prison warden.
Of the video, Almaguer said “as a citizen I am outraged and as a public official I am ashamed.”
“Whoever was involved [in the recorded celebration], regardless of their position, was not up to the challenges and commitments and cannot be here, and much less should have allowed that to happen . . . .”
After watching the video, Almaguer said, he immediately visited Puente Grande where he found no evidence of privileges or special treatment being granted to any of the inmates.
He also said the state authorities had no knowledge of Gutiérrez’ celebration, “but it has spurred a new series of investigations.”
One of the targets is state prosecutor Marisela Gómez Cobos, who at the time of the narcofiesta was the prison’s social reintegration chief.
Almaguer said it has been found that the norteño band Los Buchones de Culiacán has entered Puente Grande on several occasions, and not as inmates.
” . . . In November 2015, members of that group entered the penitentiary with another band, with whom they played on one of the terraces before the inmates; their entry was duly registered.”
When the Attorney General took office in July 2015 the Puente Grande penitentiary had an inmate population of 6,200, he said, but it was designed to hold 2,744.
Source: Milenio (sp)