FOX NEWS - Following the detention of the entire municipal police force in the Mexican city of Zihuatanejo, a pleasant U.S. expat hotspot on the Pacific coast, 20 alleged drug traffickers were found to have been masquerading as cops.
Last Tuesday’s bust was conducted by state and federal police, along with the Marine Corps. Acting on mounting evidence of corruption in that precinct, they detained all 246 officers and officials until they could provide official credentials.
At the end of the operation, 51 arrests were made, including three high-ranking officers, but 31 were later released on charges of operating without full accreditation. The remaining 20 were charged with ties to organized crime and impersonation of public officials.
“Many of them are real police officers, but who we believe have strong ties to organized crime in the region,” Zihuatanejo’s Public Security Chief Carlos Cruz told Fox News. “The cartels are very powerful in the state of Guerrero, and we are working to purge our public bodies of links to drug trafficking.”
Since last week’s operation, the Pacific resort’s municipal force has been taken off duty, leaving the state police and Mexican military to patrol the streets.