Entire Ocampo police force detained over candidate's murder

Mayoral candidate Fernando Angeles Juarez was killed last Thursday in bloodiest political season in years.

    The police's internal affairs department apprehended 28 police officers for their alleged involvement in the murder [File: Marco Ugarte/AP]
    The police's internal affairs department apprehended 28 police officers for their alleged involvement in the murder [File: Marco Ugarte/AP]

    Mexican authorities have arrested the entire police force from the town of Ocampo on suspicion of involvement in the murder of a mayoral candidate, according to local media. 

    State authorities issued a statement on Sunday saying all 28 members of Ocampo's municipal police department had been taken in for questioning by the police's internal affairs department. 

    Local and national media said the officers were held on suspicion of complicity in the killing of Fernando Angeles Juarez, who was running for mayor of Ocampo. 

    Juarez, a member of the centre-left Party of the Democratic Revolution, was shot dead last Thursday. 

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    Ocampo, a town of 24,000, is set to elect a new mayor on July 1, alongside the country's presidential elections.

    In total, more than 3,400 political posts are up for grabs across the country.

    The run-up to those elections has been the bloodiest in Mexico's recorded history, with dozens of politicians, journalists and activists killed.

    In total, at least 113 politicians have been killed between September 2017 and May 2018, according to research done by risk analysis company Etellekt. 

    Many of the political killings have taken place at the municipal or state level.

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    Violence has long been a big problem in Mexico, with violent drug cartels battling for territory for years.

    Last year was the country's most violent on record, with more than 23,000 homicides in total.

    Mexico's government deployed thousands of federal police officers earlier this year in an attempt to combat the surge in mostly drug-related violence.

    SOURCE: Al Jazeera and news agencies


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