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Mexico Claims Cartel Leader 'El Chayo' Killed ... Again

Mexico's government announced yet another major takedown of a cartel leader Sunday, but Nazario Moreno Gonzales was already supposed to be dead.

Mexico Claims Cartel Leader 'El Chayo' Killed ... Again
Al Jazeera
SMS

For the second time in as many weeks, Mexico's government can claim a major takedown in its bloody fight against the country's drug cartels. But this target was already supposed to be eliminated.

"It has confirmed for the second time the death of notorious cartel leader Nazario Moreno Gonzalez. Mexican authorities had already confirmed Gonzalez's death in 2010 after a shootout." (Via KGTV)

Yes, Mexican citizens have seen this before. Moreno, who carried several nicknames like "The Craziest One" and "El Chayo," was supposedly killed in 2010 during a two-day gun battle with armed forces. Pictures supposed to show Moreno's body even surfaced. (Via Borderland Beat)

But Mexican authorities could never produce a body, saying fellow cartel members were able to recover it first after the gun battle. That led to widespread rumors Moreno was still alive.

Authorities announced federal troops gunned Moreno down in the southwestern state of Michoacan during a press conference Sunday, and they also provided the fingerprints they say prove this really is the cartel leader. (Via WVBT)

Police say Moreno founded and led La Familia Michoacan until his apparent death splintered the cartel and led to a religion-based spinoff called the Knights Templar. (Via Latin Times)

"Moreno was a mystical figure in Michoacan and for many Mexicans. He wrote a Bible of sorts. He was the one who indoctrinated many members of the Knights Templar cartel." (Via Al Jazeera)

CNN noted a new tactic for announcing the arrest under President Enrique Pena Nieto's administration by toning down rhetoric and not referencing the Knights Templar by name.

In the past, cartel leaders were paraded in front of cameras in a way some worried was glorifying cartels.

Then again, authorities did just that two weeks ago when they captured Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman, considered the largest trafficker of drugs into the U.S. from Mexico. (Via ABC)