Suspect Christian Arturo Hernandez Tarin alias "El Cris" is presented to the media at the Federal Police headquarters in Mexico City October 18, 2011. Hernandez Tarin is suspected to be a leader and founder of the La Barredora Cartel which operates in Acapulco, according to local media
Christian Arturo Hernandez Tarin, suspected of being one of La Barredora’s founders, and three associates were arrested in Mexico state, which surrounds the Federal District and forms part of the Mexico City metropolitan area, Federal Police drug enforcement unit chief Ramon Eduardo Pequeño said.
Hernandez Tarin “had under his command at least 100 people, who performed security, homicide, lookout and drug distribution functions in the port city of Acapulco,” Pequeño said.
La Barredora, which was led by Hernandez Tarin and Eder Jair Sosa Carvajal, has been fighting the Cartel Independiente de Acapulco for control of the illegal drug trade in Acapulco, a popular tourist destination in the southern state of Guerrero.
The two gangs were formed after the break-up of the organization led by Edgar Valdez Villarreal, who was known as “La Barbie” and was arrested by the Federal Police on Aug. 30, 2010.
Drug-related murders surged 100 percent in Guerrero in the January-September 2011 period, compared to the same period last year, the federal government said.
Acapulco, a favorite among Mexican and foreign tourists for decades, has lost business to other destinations amid a 357 percent jump in murders during the first nine months of this year, making the port city Mexico’s second most violent city after Ciudad Juarez.
Hernandez Tarin is the son of Arturo Hernandez Gonzalez, a close associate of Juarez cartel bosses Amado and Vicente Carrillo Fuentes who is now doing time in a maximum-security prison, the Federal Police said.
The La Barredora leader began his criminal career with the Juarez cartel in 2003, smuggling marijuana from Ciudad Juarez into the United States, intelligence reports say.
Hernandez Tarin later worked as a hitman in the city of Cuernavaca for Arturo Beltran Leyva, a drug lord who died in a shootout with the army in 2009, and then joined the gang led by Valdez Villarreal.
The leaders of La Barredora and the Cartel Independiente de Acapulco “have moved to the central part of the country” for security reasons, Pequeño said.
Jose Carlos Espinoza Moreno, 27, Jorge Humberto Silva Gonzalez, 30, and Jose David Sanchez Delgado, 64, were arrested along with Hernandez Tarin.
The Federal Police seized an armored Porsche SUV, four AK-47 assault rifles, six ammunition clips, a handgun and communications gear from the suspects.