Fear of gang violence turns Cuernavaca into a ‘ghost town’

Most businesses in this normally vibrant city and popular weekend getaway shut down by 8pm on Saturday night, as rumors and threats of drug-gang violence spread on Twitter and Facebook. Commented El Universal: “By the afternoon, the collective psychosis was such that scores—hundreds—of businesses closed their doors. The city seemed to become a ghost town that night. The Army staged patrols, and the police were on maximum alert. Ultimately, nothing happened.” The number of gang killings and fire bombings of businesses in Cuernavaca and the state of Morelos has soared in the wake of the government’s killing of Arturo Beltrán Leyva last December, as the Beltrán Leyva cartel’s former enforcer, Édgar Valdez Villarreal, “La Barbie,” tries to take control of the market from what’s left of the family.  Many of the bombings have been marked by the initials of a new group, the ‘South Pacific Cartel (CPS).’ (Universal 4/18)

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