AP: Cartel hit targeted informant; EPPD Chief Allen, whose home was adjacent, heard the shots
From the Associated Press, APNewsBreak: Slain Juarez lieutenant was informant:
EL PASO, Texas — The eight bullets that leveled Jose Daniel Gonzalez Galeana outside his home just doors from the city’s police chief were fired at close range and left little doubt about their message.
Gonzalez, a Juarez cartel lieutenant shot on his quiet El Paso cul-de-sac this spring, was working for U.S. officials as a confidential informant, sources told The Associated Press, and experts suspect his slaying may be the first time assassins from one of Mexico’s violent drug gangs have killed a ranking cartel member on American soil.
“He got shot up close,” said police chief Greg Allen. “Whoever did it wanted to make sure it was known that it was for payback.”
Gonzalez, a legal immigrant who lived with his family on a cul-de-sac in an expensive neighborhood, was shot May 15 in front of his spacious home. His wife, Adriana Solis, and the couple’s two children fled not long after.
Two federal officials and one local official told The Associated Press that Gonzalez was handing over information about cartel activities to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, which in recent years has taken a broader role in cross-border drug trafficking investigations. One of those officials said federal investigators were monitoring Gonzalez’s activities and whereabouts.
El Paso police don’t yet have an official motive in Gonzalez’s slaying, but chief Allen said detectives are working on the assumption that a cartel colleague discovered he was discussing their illegal activities with federal agents.
Allen, who lives behind Gonzalez’s house and heard the shots from his backyard, told the AP that he and other local authorities knew Gonzalez had been involved with drugs in the past but had no idea he was both a ranking Mexican gangster and federal informant. He’s angry he wasn’t briefed about a case his department now must solve as a local homicide.
Read the entire story, which goes into more detail about the victim and about potential cartel activities in the U.S., here.