Mexican border shootings shut down US crossings after arrest of gang leader

Suspected cartel members acted in retaliation to the arrest of a gang leader who is accused of money laundering and drug trafficking.

Nick Monroe Cleveland Ohio

Suspected members of a prominent Mexican drug cartel sought swift revenge after authorities arrested the gang's ringleader, Juan Gerardo Treviño. However, their all-out gun battle against Mexico's army didn't dissuade authorities from handing over one of the Border Patrol's most wanted criminals to the United States.

When reporting on the arrest, independent journalist Ali Bradley said that Texas officials predicted "retaliation against the Mexican Military" ahead of time.

Officials in Mexico's army mentioned that Gerardo is a part of a cartel hitmen squad called "The Troops of Hell." He's the apparent nephew to Zetas Cartel leader Miguel Angel Treviño with his nickname being "El Huevo," meaning "The Egg."

According to a recent Associated Press report, it was members of the Northeast Cartel group who retaliated late Sunday night with a chaotic hail of gunfire and hijacked multiple cars in the Mexican border town of Nuevo Laredo.

"Suspected gang members blocked roads with spike strips and set fire to trailer trucks affecting local traffic in Nuevo Laredo, a city that lies opposite Laredo, Texas," is how described the ordeal.

US Customs and Border Protection had to temporarily close traffic at the border crossing between these two areas as a result.

Multiple social media videos posted early Monday morning documented evidence of the conflict within the area.

Amid the nighttime battle, there were some concerns that the US consulate building in Nuevo Laredo was hit by gunfire. The official Twitter account for the consulate briefly warned US government employees and citizens to avoid physically coming to the building and to "shelter in place."

"I have raised our grave concerns about these incidents and the safety and security of our employees directly with the government of Mexico," US Ambassador Ken Salazar told the Associated Press.

"El Huevo" is said to have been the subject of extradition by the state of Texas for quite some time. Associated Press says he was wanted for money laundering charges and "charges of conspiracy to traffic drugs."

Follow-up news reports indicate that Mexican officials successfully handed off Gerardo to US authorities on Tuesday morning.


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