Suspect arrested in Mexico in connection with kidnapping, murder of Americans
Mexican officials have arrested a suspect in connection with the kidnapping of four US citizens, two of whom were killed.
Jose Guadalupe N., 24, was guarding the house where cartel members were in custody and the four Americans – Latavia “Tay” McGee, Eric James Williams, Shaeed Woodard and Zindell Brown.
Authorities have not said whether Guadalupe, a Mexican national, is part of the Gulf Cartel, the alleged kidnapping gang, which operates in the area.
The victims were found Tuesday in a wooden hut in Ejido Tecolote, a rural area east of the Mexican city of Matamoros, Tamaulipas, according to Tamaulipas state chief prosecutor Irving Barrios. When the Americans were discovered, Woodward and Brown had been killed.
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Survivors McGee and Williams were transported to Brownsville, Texas, by a law enforcement escort across the Veterans International Bridge. They were taken to Valley Regional Medical Center in Brownsville for treatment.
Williams was shot in the left leg, but his injury was not life-threatening, said Tamaulipas Gov. Américo Villarreal.
The fourth victim was not injured.
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The four Americans from South Carolina had traveled across the southern border for McGee to undergo abdominal surgery, according to relatives.
They were crossing from Brownsville to Matamoros on Friday and had just entered Mexico when their vehicle caught fire. The group had ended in a crossfire between rival cartel groups.
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Armed men believed to be members of Mexican drug cartels forced the victims into the back of a white truck at gunpoint, with two of the victims apparently injured or dead when to drag their bodies across the pavement.
Guadalupe is the only person arrested so far in connection with the kidnapping and murder of Americans, but investigators are still looking for other attackers.
The FBI had offered a $50,000 reward for the return of the victims and the arrest of the kidnappers.