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Attempted Murder Charges Against 'El Marro' Reinstated; They Were Dropped a Month Ago

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“MX” for Borderland Beat

Jose Antonio Yepez Ortiz (“El Marro”, The Sledgehammer)

The Attorney General of the State of Guanajuato (FGE) informed, yesterday that José Antonio Yépez Ortiz, alias “El Marro”, The Sledgehammer), the former leader of the Santa Rosa de Lima Cartel (CSRL), was charged with attempted murder against public officials.

This legal decision came about a month after President Andrés Manuel López Obrador (AMLO) revealed that a federal judge absolved. As reported by Borderland Beat, AMLO demanded that the federal judge be reviewed by the Federal Judicial Council (CJF) but did not provide more information on the scope of the legal resolution.

El Marro was arrested last August and is currently an inmate at the Federal Social Readaptation Center No. 1 (“Altiplano”), Mexico’s maximum-security prison. Although his murder charge was dropped last month, El Marro continued to face charges for organized crime involvement, kidnapping, oil theft, and drug trafficking.

El Marro was the leader of the CSRL, a criminal group based in Guanajuato whose main criminal activities include huachicol (oil theft) and narcomenudeo (drug dealing). Much of the violence occurring Guanajuato in recent years has been attributed to the turf war between the CSRL and the rival Jalisco New Generation Cartel (CJNG).

Borderland Beat reported last February that El Marro was segregated from the rest of the prison population and had been complaining of ill treatment. A judge granted him a motion and ordered prison authorities to ensure El Marro was treated appropriately. 

Since 2018, Guanajuato has been the most violent state in Mexico, largely as a result of the territorial dispute between the CJNG and CSRL. Last year, Guanajuato closed the year with 4,490 murders, of which 92 percent had some connection with organized crime, according to local authorities.

Sources: La Jornada; El Siglo de Durango; Borderland Beat archives


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