Blog dedicated to reporting on Mexican drug cartels
on the border line between the US and Mexico

Wednesday, April 8, 2020

Quintana Roo Mayor Killed by Suspected Drug Traffickers After Closing Beach Access Due to COVID-19

"MX" for Borderland Beat
Obed Durón Gómez
On Monday evening, Obed Durón Gómez, the mayor of Mahahual, Quintana Roo, was killed by gunmen in a drive-by shooting while he was heading to the community of Xcalak. Investigators suspect that the mayor was killed by drug traffickers after he closed access to Mahahual's beach due to the COVID-19 outbreak. Residents from the area had complained in the past that Durón Gómez was linked to local smugglers.

The coast of Quintana Roo is a strategic corridor for narcotics arriving from Central and South America. Though once controlled by the Gulf Cartel, other criminal groups like the Sinaloa Cartel and the Jalisco New Generation Cartel (CJNG) now operate in the area. In this report, Borderland Beat will cover the murder, its possible motives and Quintana Roo's innovative drug network.

On April 6, Durón Gómez was traveling from Mahahual to Xcalak in a white van with multiple people. He was heading there to see the sanitary measures that were constructed along the town's beach. While driving through a highway, a car pulled over next to them and fired at their vehicle. Durón Gómez was shot five times and was critically wounded. His companions called paramedics, who arrived at the scene and took him to the nearest hospital. However, Durón Gómez died moments after arriving at the hospital.

Following the attack, multiple law enforcement agencies set up checkpoints and carried out surveillance measures across the area to locate the perpetrators. Among them was the rural police, the Quintana Roo State Police, the National Guard and the Mexican Navy. Quintana Roo's Attorney General's Office collected evidence at the scene and announced that the case would fall under their jurisdiction.

The van where Obed Durón Gómez was traveling in
The official motive for the murder has not been established. One of the main motives suggested by investigators is that Durón Gómez was killed by drug traffickers after he closed access to Mahahual's beach following the COVID-19 outbreak. Narcotics are smuggled through the coasts of Quintana Roo and this closure may have affected the operations of local gangs that received the drug shipments from Central and South America.

Another possible motive brought up by investigators was that Durón Gómez was killed as vengeance for the arrest of five people last week. According to the mayor, these suspects had threatened several fishermen in Xcalak and were stealing their merchandise. In their interrogation, the men stated that they would seek vengeance against residents of Xcalak and local authorities (including Durón Gómez) for arresting them.

Prior to his murder, Durón Gómez was being investigated by municipal authorities in Othón P. Blanco for his alleged organized crime ties. Residents from Xcalak told investigators that Durón Gómez had ties with drug traffickers from the area. They also noted that there were several "irregularities" in his career path since he was first police chief and was then elected mayor of Mahahual. 

Drug network in Quitana Roo
The Mexican state of Quintana Roo is a strategic corridor for smugglers bringing narcotics for Central and South America. In the community of Xcalak, some residents are involved in a drug smuggling activity known as playear (which comes from the Spanish word playa, or beach)where they look for cocaine shipments dropped off by planes.

The method works the following way: planes drop cocaine packages to areas along the coast (be it land or water). Smugglers then take speedboats to those locations and retrieve the merchandise. However, it is not uncommon for them to lose trace of some of the packages. When a package is lost, they are oftentimes found later floating in the water or somewhere along the beach areas. That is why it is important for smugglers to have control and access to beaches like the one in Mahahual.

Quintana Roo (in red) within Mexico
Once the drugs are retrieved from Xcalak, they are smuggled to Chetumal before they are sent to northern Mexico or Cancún. Cocaína mojada (literally "wet cocaine"), cocaine retrieved from the ocean, is sold at a market price of US$5 for a portion as small as the size of a person's fingernail. Historically, the Gulf Cartel and Los Zetas controlled the drug trafficking corridor in Quintana Roo, but other criminal groups like the Sinaloa Cartel and the Jalisco New Generation Cartel (CJNG) are now operating in the area.


  1. A couple of men were killed the day before who were involved in the drug trade and a land invasion of ejido land in the area...the mayor was a known narco and many say was he was killed as a retailiation of the other two deaths

  2. We can guess his criminal association with drug traffickers are what led to his fate.
    This article by official statements clearly indicates retribution is more likely than a jaguar or wildlife being the cause of death.
    There seems to be a common theme with public officials and their intentions for office. Suggest testing these individuals prior to running for office. Maybe then can complicity stem itself away from past office requirements with criminal activities.

    1. 3:05 by the time they are appointed candidate, mexican politicians have already been tested and proven worthy by the powers that be, having been police chief is a mark of distinction and getting killed is like getting your Posthumous PhD.
      "Playeros" may be the spanish name of the pickers, but who da hell throws merca on the sea?
      --DFS AGENT and boss of CDJ Rafael aguilar Guajardo gets murdered in Cancun and Amado Carrillo Fuentes from Sinaloa inherits the Juarez Cartel from him, I mean, sinaloa wasn't born yesterday...(DFS inherits aguilar guajardo's assets, 401k, retirement fund and pensions to keep quiet)
      --Yucatan peninsula becomes the ant nest called operation Mayan Jaguar where US Air America planes fall from sky loaded with cocaine that lead to 36 trillion dollars War on Drugs,
      --The drugs used to set up the WoD may have been worth 36 dollars or got changed for other chemicals before incineration and returned to their rightful owners...

    2. Interesting comment 8:41

      Your political input is knowledgeably clear. Whether, its based on facts or theory is yet to be proven.

      Nevertheless, intriguing.

    3. 10:17 yer welcome, please investigate and add to it.
      Jesus Alberto capella ibarra the hank rohn puppet and state of Quintana Roo secretary of public security went from Mexico city to Tijuas to Morelos to QR for the hank rohn family.

  3. The sinaloa cartel still exist? I thought they had disbanded after the Mayo and Caro argument over who snitched on who.

    1. Either you're trying to sound stupid or you're actually stupid

    2. @3:35
      Your Seriously 😳 😄 funny
      All those snitches and rats out of Sinaloa makes sense

  4. Fucking narcos dont respect covid. Cdg metro faction plaza boss killed in palenque in cadereyta by cdn.

  5. Things are happening in VZ, somebody's taking down Jaliscos.

  6. MX!!! Great reporting!!! Well informed and I like the links. Good job

    1. Glad you enjoyed! I try to find multiple sources because there is always more to the story. Thanks for reading.


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