Sunday, April 24, 2016

Texas parking lot shooting trial to lift lid on workings of Mexico drug cartel

A white Toyota Sequoia pulled up behind a Range Rover in an upscale shopping mall near Dallas-Fort Worth international airport at 6.47pm on 22 May 2013. A man exited the bulky SUV and walked to the passenger side of the Range Rover. He fired repeatedly at his target with a 9mm pistol and the Sequoia sped off. The episode took six seconds.  On Monday, nearly three years after Juan Jesús Guerrero Chapa was murdered while out buying shoes with his wife, two men are scheduled to stand trial in Fort Worth on charges related to his death in a case that could shed fresh light on Mexican drug cartel activities and structure both south and north of the border. Osiel Cárdenas Guillén, the former leader of the Gulf cartel, will be called to testify as a defence witness according to a court document. He was sentenced to 25 years in federal prison in 2010 for crimes including drug dealing, money laundering and murder threats, and forfeited $50m in illegal gains. He was captured in 2003 and extradited in 2007 to the US, where he is serving his sentence at a federal “supermax” prison in Colorado. Cárdenas’s plea deal with US prosecutors prompted a war between the Gulf cartel and the Zetas, its former enforcement wing, unleashing waves of violence in Mexico and along the border that killed thousands. The deal also made Guerrero Chapa into an even more important figure in Gulf cartel, a recent Dallas Morning News investigation found. Guerrero Chapa was originally Cárdenas’s lawyer, but after his boss’s arrest he became the de facto head of the Gulf cartel, lawyers for one of the defendants in the forthcoming trial allege in court documents...more

No comments: