The national coordinator of Mexico’s battle against organized crime was slain Thursday by an assassin hiding in his home in what appeared to be the latest revenge killing by one of the country’s most notorious drug cartels, reports the Los Angeles Times. Edgar Millan Gomez, 41, was the third leading federal security official to be killed in Mexico City in a week. Police sources said the so-called Sinaloa cartel was behind the attack on Millan Gomez, the nation’s third-ranking police official and acting director since April 1 of the Federal Preventive Police, an elite, 22,000-member force.
The Sinaloa cartel is one of several organized-crime groups that have grown rich transporting Colombian cocaine, locally manufactured methamphetamine and other illicit drugs to the United States. The assassination came a week after Millan Gomez held a news conference in the capital of Sinaloa state to announce the arrests of a dozen suspected cartel hit men. His killing is a dramatic escalation in the drug war, analysts said, and a clear indication that the Sinaloa-based traffickers have been hit hard by recent government raids and arrests. Seven mid-ranking federal police officials have been killed in the last month. Like Millan Gomez, they were linked to recent actions against drug traffickers. In all, more than 1,000 people have died this year in violence related to organized crime, according to tallies kept by Mexican news media. Federal officials estimate that 2,500 people were killed last year.