Michoacán suffers onslaught of organized crime

Posted on October 30, 2013


28 Oct2013 – 08:10


Morelia. – Unidentified armed groups attacked Sunday electrical installations in the troubled state of Michoacan light leaving more than 400,000 people in 14 locations, suspected government riots were perpetrated by the Knights Templar cartel.

Offenders who attacked several electric-six petrol stations “used homemade devices known as ‘Molotov’ and fired shots with guns of various calibres which impacted on the premises” without any injuries, the Interior Ministry reported a statement.

A total of 14 locations, including the state capital, Morelia, outages suffered by the attacks, said government spokesman Federal Electricity Commission (CFE) Count Stefano.

The official estimated that more than 420,000 users were affected, but at 22:30 GMT reportedly had been restored electric service to 60% of those affected.

The government’s security spokesman, Eduardo Sanchez, told AFP that “we are conducting research only” about the attacks.

Yet another government source said that it would be a message from the Knights Templar to the so-called self-defense armed groups have been created this year in Michoacan sub communities of Tierra Caliente by neighbors who say defend local cartel attacks.

On Saturday, AUC members staged a march in the town of Apatzingán-an area considered of influence of the Templars, in which violence occurred and one person was injured, having to intervene the Army and the Federal Police .

“I think it is an issue between two rival gangs, including the Knights Templar and the Jalisco cartel” New Generation, maintaining a fierce fighting in Michoacan, told AFP the government source who declined to be identified.

According to local media reports citing sources from the attorney of Michoacan, a total of seven people have died this violent weekend in Tierra Caliente.

Five have died Sunday in Apatzingán after a confrontation between an armed group and community police officers while two have died in Turicato after a clash between the army and an armed group.

In several of the 14 areas where there was sabotage, as Uruapan (over 260,000 inhabitants), paramilitary groups operate.

“The action of criminals will not stop the actions that the government of the Republic has undertaken to protect the population and combat criminals affecting Michoacan,” said the statement from the Interior.

Since last May, the Mexican government has deployed a device with thousands of soldiers and police to stop the violence in Tierra Caliente, where clashes were taking place between the paramilitaries and drug traffickers.

Michoacan was the first state where former President Felipe Calderon launched in December 2006 its comprehensive anti-drug military deployment later spread to much of the country. Since then they have been killed over 77,000 people in Mexico in events linked to organized crime.

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