Mexican navy agents capture local leader of powerful cartel

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Mexican authorities have captured a suspected leader of the powerful Jalisco New Generation Cartel, the navy and the Morelos state prosecutor’s office said on Saturday.

Francisco Javier Rodriguez Hernandez, known as “El Senoron” or “XL,” was apprehended on Friday in the tourist city of Mazatlan, in the northwest state of Sinaloa, in an operation carried out by navy agents.

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Rodriguez Hernandez, who allegedly heads the CJNG in the central state of Morelos, is wanted for aggravated homicide, including the murder of three doctors in April 2020, according to the Morelos Attorney General’s Office.

“In addition to the above, Francisco Javier Rodriguez Hernandez is wanted for the crime of criminal association, and is one of the main generators of violence in the state of Morelos,” it added in a statement, referring to the state neighboring the capital Mexico City.

“El Senoron” is also accused of controlling several laboratories for the production of synthetic drugs, according to the navy.

In July last year, authorities offered a $25,000 reward for information leading to his arrest.

The head of CJNG, Nemesio “El Mencho” Oseguera, is one of the most wanted drug lords in the world, with the US Drug Enforcement Administration offering $10 million for his arrest.

CJNG emerged in 2010 after the death of the regional leader of the Sinaloa drug cartel, Mexico’s biggest criminal group.

Mexico has been trapped in a spiral of cartel-related violence that has left more than 340,000 dead since 2006, when the government launched a controversial anti-drug operation with federal troops.

Read more: Mexico's military arrests wife of powerful drug lord ‘El Mencho’

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