Cartel boss shot dead in Mexico

Mexico City, April 2 (IANS/EFE) One of the top leaders of Mexico’s Caballeros Templarios drug cartel was killed in a shootout with the security forces, an official said.

Enrique Plancarte Solis was killed in a gunfight Monday in the central state of Queretaro, the official said while requesting anonymity.

Known as “Kike” and “La Chiva”, Plancarte Solis was considered the cartel’s No. 2 leader following the Jan 27 arrest of Dionicio Loya Plancarte.

“The identity of Enrique Plancarte, presumably killed in a shootout with the Navy Secretariat, is being verified,” the Government Secretariat said in a Twitter post.

His death is the latest blow to the cartel, which lost another top leader, Nazario Moreno Gonzalez, in a shootout with the security forces last month in the western state of Michoacan, where the criminal organisation has extensive operations.

Marines participating in an anti-drug operation were involved in the shootout, media reports said.

Authorities were offering a reward of 10 million pesos (over $765,000) for information leading to Plancarte’s arrest.

A reward of 30 million pesos (about $2.30 million) is being offered for the cartel’s top boss, Servando Gomez Martinez.