EL PASO, Texas (Border Report) – The governor of a Mexican border state has replaced her attorney general less than three weeks after a violent prison break left 10 police officers and seven inmates dead.
“Chihuahua demands more of us, and this government has always been open to listen to reinvent and reorganize itself whenever necessary for the best possible outcome,” Gov. Maru Campos said at a news conference late Monday.
Among a slew of changes across departments, Campos called on her top aide, Secretary of Government Cesar Jauregui, to take over as attorney general in a state where drug cartel violence remains insidious. Jauregui replaces Roberto Fierro, whom Campos named as her personal assistant.
Campos also asked the Chihuahua Legislature to have the state police, not the state’s attorney general, in charge of prisons.
On New Year’s Day, several heavily armed individuals rushed Cereso-3 prison in South Juarez as the gates opened to visitors. The men later identified as members of the Mexicles gang killed three guards at checkpoints and proceeded to a cell block where their leader Ernesto “El Neto” Alfredo Pinon was held.
The assailants rounded up seven prison guards and shot them execution-style before making off with “El Neto.” Police killed the gang leader in a shootout days later and have recaptured more than half a dozen of the 30 inmates that escaped the prison.
An internal investigation, however, found that “El Neto” was living a life of luxury inside the prison, with a plasma TV set, drugs, liquor and cash in his cell. The prison director was suspended and remains under investigation.