More than 1,000 kilos of chiltepín peppers valued at more than 1 million pesos (US $53,000) were stolen from a private home Saturday in Sonora.
Businessman Braulio Navarro Salcido said he had left his home, located in the Centenario neighborhood of Hermosillo, early in the day and on returning noticed that the front door had been forced, as well as the garage door. Once inside, he saw that the product he had stored in 47 sacks had vanished.
One witness said he had seen a pickup truck in the crime victim’s garage, as well as a van parked outside. The thieves apparently needed more than one vehicle to haul away the “red gold” due to the large volume.
After filing a report with the Attorney General’s Office, Braulio remained confident that the thieves would be nabbed, as a cache of that scale was unique in the chiltepín market, a business he’s been in for around 40 years.
The peppers had been purchased from harvesters in the Sierra Alta and several communities on the Sonora River for eventual sale in Tijuana, Mexicali, Culiacán and Los Mochis.
The chiltepín is harvested from wild plants in the Sonora desert. It can be hotter than the habanero but its strength can vary, depending on the weather conditions under which it grew.