The murder of four men in the tourist destination of Cancun, Mexico, was probably related to conflicts between drug trafficking organizations, authorities said Tuesday.
The state of Quintana Roo, on Mexico’s Caribbean coast, reported that the group’s leader, Héctor Flores Aceves, better known as “Pantera,” was involved in the killings.
The victims were found lifeless on Monday in the hotel zone of the city. The murders They occurred at a time when Cancun begins the Easter holidays, one of the busiest times of the year.
The state on Tuesday offered a $50,000 reward for Flores Aceves, saying he participated in the killings. However, it was the same reward that he offered himself for his arrest after a series of attacks and murders in Cancun bars in May 2022.
In 2022, Lucio Hernández, then Quintana Roo police chief, said that Flores Aceves and a rival implicated in the bar attacks were members of the Sinaloa Cartel, which has splintered in the state. Two people were killed and eight more were injured in shootings that took place in two bars in Cancun on May 6, 2022.
At the time, Hernandez said the two men were trying to control what they considered to be their market to carry out their criminal activities.”
He said the organizations’ activities included drug trafficking, kidnapping and extorting business owners, under threats that they would be attacked or killed if they did not pay their dues.
The information offered on Tuesday did not provide more details about the reason for the most recent murders. Two suspects were detained in connection with the slayings. However, drug trafficking organizations in Mexico often police exclusive zones where only they can sell drugs to tourists, and kill anyone selling drugs for a rival organization.
The killings on Monday came less than a week after an American tourist was shot in the leg in the nearby town of Puerto Morelos. The motive for that incident remains under investigation.
The US Department of States issued a travel alert last month warning Americans to “take greater precautions,” especially after dark, in tourist destinations on Mexico’s Caribbean coast, such as Cancun, Playa del Carmen and Tulum, which have been plagued by drug cartel violence in the past.
In 2022, two Canadians were murdered in Playa del Carmen, apparently for debts between international drug and arms trafficking organizations.
And in 2021, two tourists — an Indian-born California travel blogger and a German — were murdered in the southern part of the state when they apparently got caught in the middle of a standoff between rival drug dealers.
#Mexico #beach #murders #linked #cartels