Mexico City: The Mexican army announced on Friday the arrest of a suspected operative of a drug cartel in connection with the killing of 49 people in the northern state of Nuevo Leon.

Jose Ricardo Barajas Lopez was apprehended on Tuesday in Santa Catarina, Nuevo Leon, the defense department said in a statement. Barajas, one of 37 inmates who escaped in February from Apodaca prison, was detained in possession of an assault rifle, two stolen vehicles and communications gear.

Once in custody, the suspect admitted to authorities he took part in the massacre of the 49 people whose dismembered bodies were found May 13 on the roadside near Cadereyta, Nuevo Leon, the defense department said.

The killers left a banner with the bodies, which were dumped in front of a monument at the entrance to the town.

Army troops pulled down the banner and authorities did not reveal the message, but the killers’ spraypainted "100 % zetas" on the monument.


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