A prominent member of a Mexico City criminal gang who was arrested August 3 after police found her in possession of cocaine has been released for lack of evidence.
Lized Juárez Hernández, also known as “Big Mama,” was accused of being the link between city police and the Unión Tepito when she was arrested on August 3 and charged with engaging in organized crime, money laundering and drug dealing.
She spent 20 days in jail before a judge ruled that justice officials had failed to provide sufficient evidence against her.
She is thought to be in charge of the Unión Tepito’s finances and close to Óscar Andrés Flores Ramírez, known as “El Lunares,” who is currently in prison facing a murder charge.
Police arrested Flores for kidnapping in late January but he too was released, due to irregularities. However, he was rearrested soon after.
Police suspect that Big Mama provided protection for El Lunares before he went to prison, and trafficked drugs to various dealers in Mexico City and Tlaxcala, at times using her own children as foot soldiers to help her smuggle and deliver drugs as well as collect money. They also claim she bribed Mexico City police in return for protection and information.
The woman is no stranger to the justice system. She was arrested in 2005 and 2013 for various counts of assault and served a total of 14 months in prison
Eight suspected members of the Unión Tepito were also arrested on August 7 on charges of drug dealing, bribery and possession of a firearm and ammunition after police detained the men and recovered 147 doses of marijuana, two bulletproof vests and a 22-caliber submachine gun.
Originally formed over a decade ago as an alliance between business leaders in the notoriously dangerous Tepito neighborhood in order to protect themselves from thieves, the Unión Tepito has become one of the largest distributors of drugs in the city and is also suspected of being involved in extortion.
Source: El Universal (sp)