10 dead after Baja shootout with ‘rivals in organized crime’

  • At least 10 died and 9 were hurt in a shootout near Ensenada
  • Officials say the shooting was between ‘rivals in organized crime’
  • The area is key for cartels due to proximity to San Diego

(NewsNation) — A shooting “between rivals in organized crime” left at least 10 dead and nine hurt near Ensenada, about 90 miles from the U.S.-Mexico border, on Saturday, the Baja California State Attorney General’s office reports.

Videos posted on social media show “dune-buggy” style vehicles lined up along a road for a car rally Saturday at around 2 p.m. along the Transpeninsular Highway in San Vicente, as witnesses captured the sounds of loud gunfire. Multiple gunmen with long rifles can be seen exiting from at least two gray vans at a gas station before opening fire on participants of the car rally. After several rounds of gunfire, the gunmen got back into the vans and left the scene.

Footage of the aftermath shows several people who appeared to be shot lying on the ground. Mexican law enforcement can be seen closing off the area as they continue their investigation and help victims.

According to Border Report, Baja California Attorney General Ricardo Iván Carpio said evidence indicates that the assailants were hit by bullets when the racers at the car rally returned fire.

“With these findings, we can determine this incident was the result of a confrontation between suspected criminals who shot at one another,” Carpio told Border Report. “The people being targeted repelled the attack and returned fire.”

The car rally was hosted by a group with the race called “Cachanillazo.” They posted a message on Instagram expressing sympathy to those impacted by the shooting, adding: “Unfortunately, what happened during the tour was not in our hands.”

Ensenada Mayor Armando Ayala Robles said the state attorney general has commissioned a special group to investigate the incident.

The area of Mexico is known for its drug trafficking routes and is key for cartels due to its proximity to San Diego. Sources tell NewsNation that cartels are fighting each other in the area to gain full control of the drug trafficking route there.

No arrests have been made in the shooting. Sources say it’s very likely the organizations involved in the shootout were Cártel de Sinaloa and Arellano-Félix-Cartel.

The identities of the victims have not yet been released.

Border Report

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