Mexican Vigilante Gunmen Disarm Local POLICE So They Can Rid Town Of Feared Knights Templar Drug Cartel
Hundreds of armed vigilantes stormed a Mexican town and arrested federal police in the latest bloody battle between residents, criminal gangs, and the police locals say are in league with the gang members.
Around 600 members of local ‘autodefensas’, or self-defence groups, stormed Paracuaro in the troubled Michoacan state yesterday in an attempt to seize control of the town back from the feared Caballeros Templarios (Knights Templar) drug cartel.
The battle was the latest in a long-running war between the drugs gang in Mexico’s south-west and local residents who say state and federal police are not protecting them.
Small groups of local vigilantes took up arms and joined forces to storm Paracuaro, headquarters of the Knights Templar gang, where they arrested police officers and seized control of the town in a blaze of gunfire.
They drove into the town in black armoured vehicles shouting ‘Don’t be frightened, we are vigilantes’, before expelling drugs traffickers, whom they accuse of kidnapping people and bribing them to make money. Several gun battles were reported, leaving at least one dead.
Police officers, whom the vigilantes accuse of being in league with the cash-rich drug gangs, were rounded up by machine-gun toting locals, along with others suspected of associating with gang members, and a checkpoint was set up at the entrance to Paracuaro.