News / Americas

Mexico: Trafficker Linked to Kingpin Guzman Behind 350 Murders

Mario Nunez, known as 'El Mayito' or 'M-10,' looks on in this August 28, 2013 handout photo.
Mario Nunez, known as 'El Mayito' or 'M-10,' looks on in this August 28, 2013 handout photo.
Reuters
A suspected lieutenant of Mexico's most wanted drug lord captured this week likely is responsible for at least 350 murders, the government said on Thursday.

Mario Nunez, aka “El Mayito” or “M-10,” was believed to be the operations chief of Joaquin "Shorty" Guzman in Chihuahua, a state bordering the United States that has been wracked by drug-related violence during the past few years.

“This person [Nunez] is related to, and believed to be responsible for, the murder of more than 350 people recovered from 23 hidden mass graves,” said government national security spokesman Eduardo Sanchez.

Known in Mexico as “El Chapo,” Guzman heads the Sinaloa Cartel, which is widely regarded as the country's most powerful drug-running organization.

Chihuahua is home to Ciudad Juarez, a sprawling border metropolis that became notorious in recent years as one of the most violent cities in the world. Police arrested Nunez, a former policeman in the city, in Ciudad Juarez on Tuesday.

Guzman's cartel has suffered few reverses over the past year. Many of the government's heaviest blows have landed against the Gulf Cartel and the Zetas, a group founded by ex-soldiers deemed to be the most brutal of the gangs.

Over the last few weeks the government has captured a suspected boss of the Gulf Cartel, in addition to the leader of the Zetas, Miguel Angel Trevino.

Going after cartel bosses, which critics say only serves to splinter the gangs and increase the violence, was a hallmark of former President Felipe Calderon's drug strategy.

During Calderon's 2006-2012 administration, which sought to bring the gangs to heel with a military crackdown, about 70,000 people died in drug-related violence.

President Enrique Pena Nieto, who took office in December, was critical of Calderon's strategy.

Earlier this week Pena Nieto watered down one of his flagship security measures, however, a militarized police force that was meant to replace the army on the streets.

The force is set to be much smaller than originally anticipated, raising questions about whether Pena Nieto will be able to fulfill his pledge to scale back the presence of the military from states that are still dogged by gang violence.

The overall death toll has fallen, according to the government, but drug-related violence still has claimed about 1,000 lives a month since Pena Nieto took office.

You May Like

Nigeria Incumbent in Tight Spot as Poll Nears

Muhammadu Buhari is running a strong challenge to Goodluck Jonathan, amid a faltering economy and Boko Haram security worries More

Video Liberia's Almost-Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grieving

Beatrice Yardolo tells VOA that despite her fame, life is still a struggle as she waits for government's promise of support to arrive More

Video Cambodian Land Grabs Threaten Traditional Communities

At least seven different indigenous groups in Ratanakiri depend mainly on forest products for their survival, say they face loss of their land, traditional way of life More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grievingi
X
Benno Muchler
March 26, 2015 3:41 PM
Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grieving

Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Cambodian Land Grabs Threaten Traditional Communities

Indigenous communities in Cambodia's Ratanakiri province say the government’s economic land concession policy is taking away their land and traditional way of life, making many fear that their identity will soon be lost. Local authorities, though, have denied this is the case. VOA's Say Mony went to investigate and filed this report, narrated by Colin Lovett.
Video

Video US, South Korea Conduct Joint Military Exercises

The Eighth U.S. Army Division and the Eighth Republic of Korea Mechanized Infantry Division put on a well orchestrated show of force for the media this week during their joint military training exercises in South Korea. VOA’s Seoul correspondent Brian Padden was there and reports the soldiers were well disciplined both in conducting a complex live fire exercise and in staying on message with the press.
Video

Video Space Program Status Disappoints 'Last Man on the Moon'

One of the films that drew big crowds last week at the annual South by Southwest festival in Austin, Texas, tells the story of the last human being to stand on the moon, U.S. astronaut Eugene Cernan. It has been 42 years since Cernan returned from the moon and he laments that no one else has gone there since. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Young Filmmakers Shine Spotlight on Giving Back

A group of student filmmakers from across the United States joined President Barack Obama at the White House this month for the second annual White House Student Film Festival. Fifteen short films were officially selected from more than 1,500 entries by students aged 6 through 18. The filmmakers and their families then joined the president and a group of celebrities for a screening of their films. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video VOA Exclusive: Interview with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, during his first visit as president to Washington, gave a one-on-one interview with VOA Afghan Service reporter Said Suleiman Ashna, about his request for a change in U.S. troop levels, the threat from the Islamic State, and repairing relations with the United States and Pakistan. The interview was held at Blair House, late Sunday, in Pashto.
Video

Video California Science Center Tells Story of Dead Sea Scrolls

The ancient manuscripts were uncovered in the mid-20th century, and they are still yielding clues about life and religious beliefs in ancient Israel. As VOA's Mike O'Sullivan reports, an exhibit in Los Angeles shows how modern science is bringing the history of these ancient documents to life.
Video

Video Angelina Jolie Takes Another Bold Step

Hollywood actress and filmmaker Angelina Jolie has revealed she had her ovaries and fallopian tubes removed to lower her odds of getting cancer. Doctors say the huge publicity over her decision will help raise awareness about the importance of cancer screening. VOA’s George Putic has more

All About America

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More

More Americas News

US, Cuba Teams Discuss Telecommunications Issues

US delegation visited Cuba this week as the two nations continued efforts to restore diplomatic relations broken over 50 years ago
More

Egyptian Court Adjourns Trial of Al Jazeera Journalists to April 22

Two journalists are charged with aiding a terrorist organization, a reference to the Muslim Brotherhood, which Egypt banned following 2013 army takeover
More

Rio Exhibition Dramatizes Olympian Bay Cleanup Task

Display highlights problem of trash in Guanabara Bay, where sailing, windsurfing events are to take place in next Summer Games
More

Chile Says Drought Permanent, Lays Out Water Plan

President Michelle Bachelet says government will invest in desalinization plants and reservoirs to ensure access to potable water
More

Poll: Venezuelan Leader's Popularity Inches Up to 25%

Rise comes after United States declared Venezuela a security threat and ordered sanctions against seven officials
More

High Winds, Drought Feed Chilean Forest Fires

Blazes have ravaged swaths of China Muerta and Nalca Lolco reserves and Conguillio national park, revered for its ancient forests
More