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Latino Daily News

Thursday October 18, 2012

Authorities to Exhume Parents of Dead Zeta Boss to Confirm ID

Authorities to Exhume Parents of Dead Zeta Boss to Confirm ID

Photo: Heriberto Lazcano Lazcano

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Authorities will exhume the bodies of the parents of Los Zetas drug cartel boss Heriberto Lazcano Lazcano to confirm that the man killed 10 ago in a shootout with marines was the notorious kingpin, the Mexican Attorney General’s Office said Wednesday.

The graves are in the central state of Hidalgo, where Lazcano was born in 1975, the head of the AG office’s organized-crime division, Jose Cuitlahuac Salinas, said.

Genetic samples from the parents’ bodies will be compared with those taken from the man thought to be Lazcano before his body was snatched from the morgue by gunmen, Salinas said.

Mexican President Felipe Calderon confirmed last Tuesday that the person who died in an Oct. 7 gunbattle with marines in the northern state of Coahuila was the feared Zetas boss, known as “El Lazca.”

Lazcano’s identity was determined using fingerprints and photographs.

But the height of the man killed in Coahuila was different from that listed on Lazcano’s records, raising doubts in Mexican society about whether the government got the right man.

It “has not been possible” to track down Lazcano’s sisters, Salinas said Wednesday, forcing authorities to try to obtain DNA samples from the remains of the kingpin’s long-dead parents.

Calderon and the marines, who left the body in the custody of Coahuila state authorities before they realized the identity of the dead man, insist he was indeed Lazcano.

The Mexican and U.S. governments had offered rewards of $2.3 million and $5 million, respectively, for information leading to the capture of El Lazca.

Lazcano deserted from the Mexican army in 1999 and formed Los Zetas with three other soldiers, all members of an elite special operations unit.

The shootout that killed Lazcano occurred a day after marines captured Zetas regional boss Salvador Alfonso Martinez, who allegedly ordered the killings of more than 300 people, including 72 migrants massacred in 2010 in the northeastern state of Tamaulipas.

After several years as the armed wing of the Gulf cartel, Los Zetas, considered Mexico’s most violent criminal organization, went into the drug business on their own account in early 2010 and now control several lucrative territories.