Tuesday, November 28, 2023

Sinaloa police crack down on cartel-related Halloween costumes

There are limits to what you can wear for a Halloween costume in Sinaloa: don’t dress up as a sicario.

At least 28 people were arrested and eight vehicles were seized due to Halloween-related infractions committed in Culiacán, the capital, over the weekend.

State police took two people into custody for carrying fake weapons to complement their Halloween costumes, while at least some of the vehicles were seized and their drivers detained because they were painted to appear like they were covered with blood. One car splashed with red paint had a mock corpse on its roof.

Many other people were arrested because they were drinking alcohol in public places during Halloween celebrations, the Sinaloa Security Ministry (SSP) said. The army, National Guard and municipal police also participated in an operation against anti-social behavior in the Sinaloa capital.

The SSP published photos of two of the detainees on Twitter. One showed a man dressed in black toting a fake assault weapon and wearing a mask used by one of the fictional characters in the Friday the 13th film series.

“This Saturday in Culiacán this civilian was referred to the relevant authority for carrying this type of object,” the SSP said, adding that anyone else in possession of toy weapons will meet the same fate.

Another photo published on Sunday showed a young man in a Squid Game costume standing in front of a phony firearm.

The SSP said he had been detained in Culiacán for being an apologist for violence and using a toy gun. “Let’s avoid using these artifacts that can generate fear among the public,” it said.

Sinaloa Security Minister Cristóbal Castañeda said Saturday in a post on his own Twitter account that there would be no tolerance for the use of fake weapons during Halloween celebrations.

In another post that included two images of a white car painted with red streaks of “blood,” Castañeda stressed that “these kinds of situations that cause anxiety for the public will not be permitted.”

Citizens of Culiacán, a stronghold of the powerful Sinaloa Cartel, have also been terrorized by real violence. After one of Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzmán’s sons was arrested in 2019, the Sinaloa Cartel carried out a wave of attacks across the city that prompted federal authorities to release the suspected trafficker.

More recently, a group of armed men shot out more than 80 security cameras with automatic machine guns, causing panic in several parts of the city.

With reports from El Universal and Informador 

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