Eleven deaths, including 9 citizens with no links to criminal groups, is -so far- the balance of the day of violence that took place this Thursday in Ciudad Juárez, Chihuahua. The actions against the population and various premises were attributed to the criminal group ‘The Mexicans’.
At a press conference from the National Palace, Ricardo Mejía Berdeja, Undersecretary of Public Security of the Ministry of Security and Citizen Protection (SSPC), reported that the violent events began around 1:30 in the afternoon inside of the Social Reintegration Center number 3, located in Juárez, where members of the groups called ‘Los Chapos’ and ‘Los Mexicles’ had a fight. Inside the prison, two people died and at least 20 were injured, four of them with a firearm.
It was after the violence unleashed inside the prison that, according to the authorities, the violent day in the streets of Ciudad de Juárez, which claimed the lives of nine citizens. According to President Andrés Manuel López Obrador, this was in “retaliation.”
“Something that had not been presented, and hopefully it will not be repeated, because the innocent civilian population was attacked as a kind of retaliation. It was not only the confrontation between two groups, but the moment came when they began to shoot civilians, innocent people; this is the most unfortunate part of the matter,” said the president.
What is known about the gang identified as guilty?
According to a report from the Drug Policy Program (PPD) of the Center for Economic Research and Teaching (CIDE)Until 2021, 12 criminal groups operated in Chihuahua, including ‘Los Mexicles’.
This criminal gang, details the report, is mainly dedicated to executing criminal activities and armed conflictseither ally of the Sinaloa Cartel.
Since the first decade of the 2000s, authorities have referred to this criminal group, which was involved in a fight in 2005 that left at least 7 dead also in the Social Reintegration Center.
According to the report “Young men from the West Zone of Ciudad Juárez: building identities in contexts of violence” published by The College of the Northern Border, ‘Los Mexicles’ they are an armed arm without formal training in the use of weapons that is dedicated, mainly, to drug dealing.
In 2021, the former governor of Chihuahua, Javier Corral, launched the program “Information wanted” which was intended tolocate generators of violence and the criminal groups to which they belong”. Among the priority targets were members of ‘Los Mexicles’.
Some of the violent events that are attributed to this criminal group are the attack on a government building in 2019 that left 10 people murdered and 15 vehicles on fire, of which 10 were public transport units, in addition to an attack on the Municipal Public Security Secretariat of Ciudad Juárez where at least eight police officers were injured.