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Hitmen execute cartel operative at church altar in northern Mexico

July 22, 2018  |  Posted by: Francesca Falzarano
Hitmen execute cartel operative at church altar in northern Mexico

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A cartel operative was shot and killed last month after he fled gunmen inside of a church in the Mexican state of Sonora.

Local press outlets revealed that the victim identified as Víctor Alejandro Arreola Becerra, also known as “El Piloto,” was trailed by gunmen in a truck when he pulled up to the front of a Catholic church and fled inside while holding onto his four-year-old son in Colonia Casa Blanca, Ciudad Obregón.

Bystanders said the man ran to a section of the church where the grandmother of his child was seated and pleaded with the assailants, “Don’t shoot my child.”

The pursuers then took the victim to the altar and executed him with a burst of gunfire in front of roughly 40 parishioners waiting for mass to begin.

The hitmen immediately fled the church leaving the child unharmed.

Various police units arrived at the church and carried out an investigation spearheaded by ministerial police and forensic experts working with the state attorney general’s office.

Authorities indicated the victim was a criminal objective who had been previously investigated for participating in sexual conduct with a minor.

He was also tied to the former regional plaza head of the Beltran Leyva Cartel, Trinidad “Chapo Trini” Olivas Valenzuela, who was killed last year in Jalisco.

The victim reportedly worked as a pilot for “Chapo Trini” and was given orders from a cartel member known as “El Telcel” or “El Vaquero.”

According to local reports, Arreola was the husband of Beatriz Berenice Borbolla Robles, the ex-wife of Valentín Elizalde, a famous narcocorrido singer who was fatally shot back in 2006 in Reynosa, Tamaulipas after a concert.

Narcocorridos or narco-ballads are a genre of music that pays tribute to the exploits of the most infamous drug kingpins and Elizalde had also composed lyrics for the notorious Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman, the head of the Sinaloa Cartel.

Borbolla Robles was killed in Sonora in 2016 when hitmen opened fire on the vehicle she was riding in.

A few days later, Víctor Alejandro Arreola Becerra and another member were shot and injured when gunmen opened fire on the funeral of his wife, Borbolla Robles.

According to Breitbart Texas, the slaying at the church was executed by the Sinaloa Cartel cell called “Los Salazar,” which are considered rivals of the Beltran Leyva Cartel.

The turf war between Los Salazar and Beltran Leyva is attributed to the recent increase in murders in Ciudad Obregón.

So far in July, 15 people have been killed in drug-related homicides

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