Soldiers patrol in Cancún after the shootings. Soldiers patrol in Cancún after the shootings.

Four people dead after Cancún gunfire

Crime gangs blamed for attack; link to Playa del Carmen shooting suspected

Investigators are looking into a possible link between Monday’s shooting in Playa del Carmen and armed attacks yesterday in Cancún that left a police officer and three suspected criminals dead.

Government Secretary Francisco López Mena said in an interview this morning that organized crime was behind yesterday afternoon’s assault on the offices of the state Attorney General and the C4 security control center.

He claimed it was retaliation for the new state government’s crackdown on corruption.

Authorities declared a Code Red after a commando group described as heavily armed arrived on motorcycles at the offices of the Attorney General at about 4:00pm.

The attackers entered the building in the city’s downtown area and began shooting, killing Humberto Mora, a ministerial police officer. One of the perpetrators was killed as they left the building.

The gunfire created panic in the nearby Plaza las Palmas shopping center, where several businesses closed their doors.

There was more gunfire in the streets where traffic was paralyzed but minutes later more than 100 police officers arrived, reported Novedades Quintana Roo, which reported that the gunfire lasted for about 15 minutes.

More gunfire was heard shortly after at the Gran Plaza, where another criminal suspect was reportedly killed and at least two grenades detonated, and at the Plaza las Américas.

The Government Secretary said it was “very probable” that the attacks were a response to the government’s accusations of corruption against officials of the previous administration.

López said it was presumed that there was a link to the Playa del Carmen incident in which five people were killed and 15 wounded early Monday morning when a shooter entered the Blue Parrot bar and began firing at an individual inside.

López said none of Cancún’s tourism facilities nor tourists themselves were affected by yesterday’s gunfire and that conditions had returned to normal. The shootings took place some eight kilometers from the city’s hotel zone, where police implemented restrictions on access in response to the violence.

Five people have been arrested in connection with the shootings.

Governor Carlos Joaquín González said the attack on the Attorney General’s office came as a result of the government’s fight against impunity and corruption. He said the federal government had promised to send in Federal Police reinforcements to assist with security.

Source: Milenio (sp), Novedades Quintana Roo (sp), Diario de Yucatán (sp), Animal Político (sp)

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