Top cop shot dead in Mexico

February 13th, 2009 - 2:34 pm ICT by IANS  

Monterrey (Mexico), Feb 13 (IANS) The chief of the homicide unit in the Nuevo Leon state police was gunned down here, EFE reported Friday.
Ramon Jasso Rodriguez was driving to his office in Monterrey, the state capital, when he was intercepted by assailants travelling in at least two vehicles.

Armed with AK-47 and AR-15 assault rifles, the attackers fired some five-dozen shots, police said.

Jasso was killed early Thursday, just hours after he led a state police detachment in dispersing a street protest by hundreds opposed to the presence of soldiers in Monterrey.

Fifteen people were arrested in Wednesday night’s demonstration, which followed a similar action the previous night.

The commander of the Nuevo Leon state police, Aldo Fasci Zuazua, suggested the drug cartels could have behind the protests in Monterrey.

Armed groups linked to the drug cartels have murdered around 2,700 people nationwide in 2007 and 1,500 in 2006, with the 2008 death toll soaring to 5,630, according to a tally by the Mexico City daily El Universal.

According to press reports, some 750 people have died in drug-related violence across Mexico so far this year.

Since taking office in late 2006, President Calderon has deployed federal police and soldiers across the country in a crackdown on drug gangs battling over supply routes to the US.

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