Mexican mayoral candidate is SHOT as son denies ties to cartel

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Gruesome video footage shows a Mexican mayoral candidate being shot dead while meeting voters – while her grieving son vehemently denied ties to a drug cartel.

Alma Barragán, 61, was campaigning in the Guanajuato town of Moroleón last Tuesday afternoon when gunmen opened fire, fatally wounding her.

“Sport has been abolished,” Barragán tells her potential voters in Spanish, as another woman stands next to her.

“We citizens have been leaving the streets for years,” the businesswoman added, just before she appeared to have been hit by a bullet. At least 10 other shots were heard, with the person Barragán filming falling to the ground as the bullets flew.

The video footage was released Monday and filmed by a person attending the outdoor event.

Still image from a video released Monday showed the terrifying moment Mexican mayoral candidate Alma Barragán was assassinated on May 25 in the central state of Guanajuato.  Mexico's President Andrés Manuel López Obrador announced on Tuesday that two suspects linked to the murder had been arrested on Monday.

Still image from a video released Monday showed the terrifying moment Mexican mayoral candidate Alma Barragán was assassinated on May 25 in the central state of Guanajuato. Mexico’s president, Andrés Manuel López Obrador, announced on Tuesday that two suspects linked to the murder had been arrested on Monday.

Ama Barragán ran under the party ticket of the citizens' movement (Movimiento Ciudadano).  She is the 88th political candidate killed in Sunday's midterm elections

Ama Barragán ran under the party ticket of the citizens’ movement (Movimiento Ciudadano). She is the 88th political candidate killed in Sunday’s midterm elections

On Tuesday, Mexican President André Manuel López Obrador announced that two suspects had been arrested on Monday in connection with the murder.

“Don’t think you’re going to commit crimes and then nothing will happen,” said López Obrador. “To those who misbehave, who don’t think they’re going to commit a crime and nothing’s going to happen because they’re well supported, they’ve bought authorities, because they have influence, it doesn’t work anymore, it doesn’t count anymore, those were other times. Whoever commits a crime is punished, that’s how we continue to act.’

The president’s announcement came on the heels of authorities who have claimed that Barragán’s son, Fernando Sánchez, 36, is a high-ranking leader for the Jalisco New Generation cartel.

Newspaper Herald of Mexico reported on Saturday that Sánchez oversees cartel cells operating in the Guanajuato cities of Yuriria, Uriangato, Moroleón, Salvatierra, Santiago, Maravatío, Jaral del Progreso and Valle de Santiago.

Fernando Sánchez and his sister, Denisse Sánchez, were at the campaign event in Moroleón, Guanajuato, on May 25 when their mother, Alma Barragán, a candidate for the city's mayoral seat, was murdered.  Fernando Sánchez told Imagen Television that he is not a member of the Jalisco New Generation Cartel.  The newspaper El Heraldo de México reported on Saturday that it had access to a document from the Office of the Attorney General of the State of Guanajuato indicating that he was elevated to the leadership structure of the cartel in June 2020.

Fernando Sánchez and his sister, Denisse Sánchez, were at the campaign event in Moroleón, Guanajuato, on May 25 when their mother, Alma Barragán, a candidate for the city’s mayoral seat, was murdered. Fernando Sánchez told Imagen Television that he is not a member of the Jalisco New Generation Cartel. The newspaper El Heraldo de México reported on Saturday that it had access to a document from the Office of the Attorney General of the State of Guanajuato indicating that he was elevated to the leadership structure of the cartel in June 2020.

Alma Barragán was murdered on May 25 in Guanajuato, Mexico, during an outdoor campaign event

Alma Barragán was murdered on May 25 in Guanajuato, Mexico, during an outdoor campaign event

The newspaper received an investigative report from the Attorney General of the State of Guanajuato showing that Sánchez was elevated in the leadership structure of the cartel in Guanajuato following the arrest of José “La Tripa” Martínez in June 2020.

Martínez has been linked to a series of kidnappings, murders, car thefts and the theft of oil from refinery pipelines. Investigators also tied him to several clandestine tombs discovered in the municipalities of Yuriria, Uriangato, and Moroleón.

In an interview with Image TelevisionSánchez denied having anything to do with the cartel. According to the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration’s 2020 National Drug Threat Assessment Report, the group ranks second behind the Sinaloa cartel in narcotics exports from Mexico to the United States.

He stated that Barragán’s murder was a direct result of disagreements she had with her political rivals and rejected the idea that a criminal organization was plotting his mother’s murder.

Both he and his sister, Denisse Sánchez, were at the campaign event where Barragán was executed.

“She said and emphasized a lot that upon arrival (as mayor), the corruption would end,” Fernando Sánchez said. “That she came to control the current government and since she started this topic, the attacks, the dirty war they call in politics, started.”

Barragán ran under the civic movement party card (Movimiento Ciudadano) and became the 88th political candidate to be assassinated before Sunday’s midterm elections.

Barragán, a newcomer to the political spectrum, did a Facebook Live stream and invited residents from the neighborhoods of La Manguita, El Ombligo and Pico de Pájaro to attend the campaign event.

“If you’d like to join me, come and listen to my proposals. Come to spend a moment together,” she said. ‘Together we do better. Thank you. I’ll wait here for you.’

She was murdered shortly afterwards. It remains unclear whether Barragán’s killers used that live stream to track her down.

On Sunday, Barragán’s daughter accepted the citizens’ movement’s request to replace her mother and run for mayor of Moroleón.

“There are different feelings I have: it’s fear, it’s anger, it’s pain, it’s sadness, it’s a lot of helplessness. But today I am here for my mother, I am here for her people, I am here for everything she has always fought for, to support the communities, to walk shoulder to shoulder with each of you and with myself, because we have done that and you know it,” Denisse Sánchez said in a video statement.

With the election only five days away, she has chosen not to campaign in public.

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