(Bloomberg) -- Mexican security forces captured Jose Yepez, the cartel leader known as “El Marro” who had threatened President Andes Manuel Lopez Obrador.
One of the most-wanted men in Mexico, Yepez leads the Santa Rosa de Lima cartel, which was known for stealing fuel and for helping turn Guanajuato into one of the country’s most violent states with more than 47 police officers killed last year. Security forces had captured members of Yepez’s family in June, leading him to threaten retaliation in a video on social media. His cartel was also involved in a conflict with the Jalisco Nueva Generacion cartel.
Lopez Obrador had sent armed forces into the state to bolster the fight against organized crime after the Salamanca Refinery in Guanajuato was repeatedly targeted. Guanajuato is also home to San Miguel de Allende, a picturesque town popular with travelers and expatriates, but one that has become the latest tourist hot-spot cowed by gang violence.
“This arrest is a big step toward recovering peace” in the state, Guanajuato governor Diego Rodriguez wrote on Twitter. Security forces also freed a kidnapped businessman and arrested five other people, according to a statement on Rodriguez’ account.
©2020 Bloomberg L.P.