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Latino Daily News

Tuesday July 29, 2014

Ex-Mexican Governor’s Son Seen Meeting with Cartel Leaders

An online video shows the leader of the Los Caballeros Templarios (Knights Templar) drug cartel meeting with a son of Fausto Vallejo, the former governor of the western Mexican state of Michoacan.

The meeting took place at an unspecified date in cartel boss Servando Gomez Martinez’s area of influence in Michoacan, based on the video footage uploaded Tuesday to news agency Quadratin’s Web site.

In the video, Rodrigo Vallejo, the ex-governor’s eldest son, is seen conversing with Gomez Martinez, known as “La Tuta,” while drinking a beer.

Vallejo told the cartel chief that his father had undergone an organ transplant and informed him of his intention to create a group that he refers to as “la empresa” to work with the Templarios.

Gomez, for his part, tells Vallejo of the talks he held with some politicians with a view to backing their candidacies in the Nov. 13, 2011, elections in Michoacan.

Quadratin said it would post the full 18-minute video, with subtitles, to its Web site in the coming hours.

The news agency’s director, Francisco Garcia, told MVS radio that the video was the result of an investigation it launched in May, when word began to circulate about at least two meetings between Gomez Martinez and Rodrigo Vallejo.

He recalled that “all the individuals who have appeared with ‘La Tuta’ are in jail,” referring to the former governor of Michoacan, Jesus Reyna; Jose Trinidad Martinez Pasalagua, a transportation industry regulator and former state legislator; and the mayor of the city of Lazaro Cardenas, Arquimides Oseguera, all for alleged drug-trafficking ties.

Fausto Vallejo, who resigned as governor in June for health reasons, said he would watch the video in its entirety before deciding whether or not comment on the meeting, Quadratin said.

Vallejo stepped down amid a storm of criticism after the federal government deployed soldiers and police in Michoacan in January in an effort to end the wave of drug-related violence in the state and after an initial video aired showing his son in the company of Gomez Martinez.

The federal government intervened in Michoacan to fill a security vacuum in the state, where community self-defense groups had formed to defend themselves against the Caballeros.

Since January, federal authorities have dealt the cartel a series of blows, capturing or killing several of its top leaders.

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