By Lizbeth Diaz
Mexican security forces on Wednesday arrested Omar Trevino, leader of the bloody Zetas drug cartel, giving President Enrique Pena Nieto his second capture of a kingpin in less than a week.
Trevino, brother of captured ex-Zetas leader Miguel Angel Trevino, was caught by members of the army and the federal police in the northern city of Monterrey in the early hours of Wednesday, a senior government official said.
His arrest comes just days after the capture of Servando Gomez, leader of the Knights Templar drug gang, who was the most wanted capo still at large in Mexico.
The Zetas have been blamed for many of the bloodiest atrocities carried out by Mexican gangs in a wave of violence that has claimed over 100,000 lives since 2007.
The gang has been weakened since the killing of former boss Heriberto Lazcano in 2012 and the subsequent capture of Miguel Angel Trevino in 2013.
Omar Trevino then became one of the gang’s main leaders, government officials said.
Among the grimmest incidents pinned on the Zetas are the massacres of dozens of migrant workers, an arson attack on a Monterrey casino in 2011 that killed 52 and the dumping of 49 decapitated bodies near the same city in 2012.
Founded by army deserters in the late 1990s, the Zetas initially acted as enforcers for the Gulf Cartel, based along the border with Texas and one of the oldest organized crime groups in Mexico. But the group struck out on its own in early 2010, setting off the most violent phase in Mexico’s drug war.