02/24/11—Julian Zapata Espinosa, also know by his alias, el Piolín, was arrested yesterday along with five others and identified as the prime suspect for the killing of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agent, Jaime Zapata. Zapata Espinosa has been identified as the leader of a branch of the Los Zetas cartel that operates in San Luis Potosí. The Mexican army arrested Zapata Espinosa in 2009 along with six others for the possession of arms exclusively reserved for military use, camouflage uniforms, and false insignia of federal corporations. He was later released on bail.
In response, Zapata Espinosa stated, “the gunmen shot at the American agents because they thought the car was armed with members of the Gulf Cartel, a rival organization.” He went on to say that members of his group were confused by the SUV the ICE agents were driving, as a lot of the drug cartels have taken a liking to SUV’s, even though the car had American diplomatic plates.
Mexican President Felipe Calderón called President Obama personally to let him know that the assassin suspect, Julian Zapata Espinosa, had been detained last night. President Obama reiterated that the “U.S. and Mexico cannot tolerate violence against those that serve and protect citizens, like agent Zapata.” The arrest of Julian Zapata Espinosa came only 24 hours after the funeral of Jaime Zapata.
If you’re interested in reading more about the case of Jaime Zapata, feel free to read our other articles on this: