Skip to main content

Authorities search for Nuevo Laredo police chief

By Nick Valencia, CNN
updated 12:51 PM EST, Tue February 19, 2013
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Roberto Alejandro Balmori Garza was last seen over the weekend, official says
  • Reports say his 2 brothers were found shot dead in neighboring Nuevo Leon state Sunday
  • Nuevo Laredo has been the scene of violent attacks in Mexico's drug war

(CNN) -- The police chief of the violent Mexican border town of Nuevo Laredo has been missing for days, and state authorities are trying to find him, the Tamaulipas Attorney General's Office told CNN early Tuesday.

Travel warning: Violence spreading in Mexico

Roberto Alejandro Balmori Garza was last seen over the weekend, spokesman Ruben Dario Rios said. Local media report that Balmori Garza's two brothers were found shot dead in the neighboring state of Nuevo Leon on Sunday. Local reports said one of his brothers was a federal prosecutor.

The Attorney General's Office would not confirm those reports to CNN. Widespread drug cartel-related violence has scared local officials into revealing little information about ongoing investigations.

Outgoing Mexican president defends legacy in wake of drug war

The state Attorney General's Office "has instructed a delegation in Nuevo Laredo to correspond to the respective authorities to establish the collection of information leading to determining the city official's whereabouts," a news release said.

In 2005, the police chief in Nuevo Laredo was gunned down on his first day on the job. In 2010, gunmen also killed a retired army general put in charge of police there.

Read more: Mexico's invisible women

Nuevo Laredo has been the scene of violent attacks in Mexico's drug war.

Like most Mexican border cities, it offers rows of bars, inexpensive dentists, restaurants and cultural events to draw tourists. But tourism has sharply declined in the past six years as drug cartel violence has spiraled in Mexico. Because of the various bridges into the United States and access to a major highway, rival drug cartels are vying for control of Nuevo Laredo.

Gunmen rape 6 tourists near Acapulco, Mexico

Los Zetas, arguably the most violent Mexican drug cartel, are headquartered in Nuevo Laredo, which sits directly across the border from Laredo, Texas. The group has operations in at least 11 Mexican states and has been in a bloody turf war in northeast Mexico with the rival Gulf Cartel for the last several years.

In late 2011, the Texas Department of Public Safety warned against holiday travel to Nuevo Laredo, citing information that the Zetas may be targeting U.S. citizens.

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
updated 1:00 AM EDT, Thu September 18, 2014
China's Xi Jinping and India's Narendra Modi, leaders of the most populous nations face similar challenges. Can they learn from each other?
updated 6:36 PM EDT, Wed September 17, 2014
The U.S. is not returning combat troops to Iraq, President Barack Obama insists.
updated 11:01 PM EDT, Wed September 17, 2014
This is "Flames of War," a slick and ominous new video from the ISIS media center.
updated 8:38 PM EDT, Tue September 16, 2014
A man abducted alongside killed U.S. journalist Steven Sotloff tells CNN that no one from the U.S. government has tried to talk with him.
updated 11:08 AM EDT, Wed September 17, 2014
Mulatu Astatke is the founding father of ethio-jazz: a fusion of Ethiopian music with western jazz.
updated 9:11 AM EDT, Wed September 17, 2014
Have you been to these? The global museum list, released Tuesday, ranks 25 of the world's best museums.
updated 1:03 PM EDT, Wed September 17, 2014
iOS 8, the latest version of Apple's mobile operating system, comes with new features that you'll enjoy.
updated 5:27 AM EDT, Wed September 17, 2014
Psychedelic drugs are being researched as a potential treatment for conditions ranging from anxiety to tobacco and alcohol addiction.
updated 9:42 PM EDT, Wed September 17, 2014
It's a surfer's paradise -- but Diah Rahayu is out on her own when it comes to professional women's wave-riding in Bali.
updated 6:04 AM EDT, Wed September 17, 2014
Each day, CNN brings you an image capturing a moment to remember, defining the present in our changing world.
Browse through images from CNN teams around the world that you don't always see on news reports.
ADVERTISEMENT