Police force cartel leader admits over a thousand murders

by Tiffany Millar on August 1, 2011

Police in Mexico say that a suspected cartel leader arrested on Friday has submitted a confession that admits his part in ordering the murders of 1,500 people across northern Chihuahua state.

Mr Jose Antonio Acosta Hernandez, aged 33, also stands suspected of masterminding attacks on an American consulate worker and her partner in Ciudad Juarez in 2010.

Officials say that Mr Acosta Hernandez was one of the Juarez cartel’s key figures. Juarez is officially Mexico’s most violent city, and has had over 3,000 murders over the last 12 months.

The suspect, better known to those in his community as El Diego, lead the La Linea gang, which has members work as contract killers especially for the Juarez cartel. As is well-known to those keeping tabs on Mexico’ War on Drugs, the cartel controls vital drug smuggling routes that run from Ciudad Juarez and right into the United States.

The authorities believe that El Diego was the man responsible for plotting a car bomb attack that resulted in four deaths in the border city.

Ramon Pequeno, who is head of the Mexican federal police’s drugs unit said that Mr Acosta Hernandez has also confessed to ordering the murders of 15 people, the majority of which were teenagers, at a Ciudad Juarez party last year.

The Mexican government previously offered 15m Mexican pesos, roughly £778,000 for the any information that might lead to his arrest.

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