Photo: Jose Eduardo Moreira Rodriguez
The theory that an organized crime group and public officials may have conspired to kill the son of a prominent Mexican politician is gaining ground among investigators, the government of the northern state of Coahuila said.
Jose Eduardo Moreira Rodriguez, son of former Coahuila Gov. and Institutional Revolutionary Party, or PRI, chairman Humberto Moreira, was shot and killed last Wednesday on a rural road near the U.S.-Mexico border.
“Coordinated actions between state and federal security and intelligence agencies bolster the lines of investigation based on the prior investigations” conducted by federal and state prosecutors, the Coahuila state government said in a statement.
“It is very probable that organized crime members participated in the murder of Jose Eduardo Moreira Rodriguez, in which, based on the facts and statements obtained by prosecutors, collusion by authorities or public servants is presumed,” the state government said.
“All the possibilities that technical and investigative methods allow for reaching a resolution to the case will be exhausted,” the state government said.
“More than 16 investigative tests have been made, 21 statements have been taken and different actions have been taken to try to clear up the incident,” the Coahuila state government said.
The state Attorney General’s Office “reiterates its commitment to working together with the authorities of the federal government, which we are sure will lead to handing over those responsible to the appropriate judges,” the statement said.
Four municipal police officers in Acuña, where Moreira was murdered, are in preventive detention for their suspected involvement in the killing, Coahuila Attorney General Homero Ramos Gloria said in a radio interview on Friday.
The Coahuila AG said two lines of investigation were being pursued, one of which was opened Thursday after a conversation with Humberto Moreira following his son’s funeral.
He said municipal officials in Ciudad Acuña were implicated in the murder but refused to provide further information that might interfere with the investigation.
Ramos also referred to the possibility that Moreira Rodriguez’s murder was an act of revenge for the killing of the nephew of the Los Zetas drug cartel’s No. 2, Miguel Angel Treviño Morales, alias “Z40,” in a shootout with state police Wednesday in the border city of Piedras Negras.
The clash erupted when members of an elite state police unit were conducting a search for 131 inmates who escaped from the Piedras Negras prison in mid-September. Five people were killed, one of whom was identified by his wife as Treviño Morales’s nephew
“That’s the version that’s been circulating in the state’s north region, but as an attorney general I don’t have the evidence to say that’s what happened. However, it could be a hypothesis in the sense that (the two deaths occurred) on the same day,” Ramos said.
What is clear, he added, is that the murder was premeditated. “It’s clear that they knew who he was. It was done in cold blood.”
The 25-year-old victim was regional coordinator of social development programs for the violence-wracked state of Coahuila, whose governor, Ruben Moreira, is Moreira Rodriguez’s uncle.
Humberto Moreira, who served as Coahuila’s governor from 2005 to 2011, became PRI chairman after leaving office.
He resigned on Dec. 2 amid a scandal over allegedly improper contracting during his time as governor of that state.
Moreira’s resignation was prompted by statements made a day earlier by President-elect and then-candidate Enrique Peña Nieto, a member of the PRI, that the controversy over the surge in Coahuila’s public debt had hurt the party.