Ayala Fonseca, arrested in Ensenada. Ayala Fonseca of the Arellano Félix Cartel.

‘Historic’ arrest of Ensenada cartel boss

Drug trafficker had been active in the area for years

The arrest of an alleged drug trafficker last night in Baja California was described as historic by the state’s Security Secretary.

Gabriel Ayala Fonseca, known as “El Tres Animales,” or “The Three Animals,” has been identified as the leader of the Arellano Félix Cartel in Ensenada and responsible for much of the violence in the area due to a territorial dispute with the Sinaloa Cartel.

Daniel de la Rosa Anaya, the state’s security chief, said the capture was historic because Ayala Fonseca had been operating in Ensendada for many years.

According to the state police, the cartel boss had worked for the Arellano Félix gang since the 1990s, slowly working his way up to become a regional boss.

State police and Army personnel made the arrest when Ayala Fonseca was traveling in a vehicle on Avenida México, transporting high-caliber weapons and drugs.

His capture came just hours after security forces arrested Arturo Misael Frías Ochoa, a rival belonging to the Sinaloa Cartel who is suspected of an assassination attempt against Ayala Fonseca at a cockfighting ring in Rosarito in January when four people were killed.

Officials said in a statement released last night that both men had been carrying out a war over the sale and distribution of drugs in Ensenada, fueling a rash of killings and other violence.

Authorities have had Anaya Fonseca in custody before. He was detained in 2009 with eight accomplices, including an Ensenada municipal police officer, after being found in possession of 50 kilograms of crystal meth, but was later released.

Source: Reforma (sp), Zeta Tijuana (sp)

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