Friday, March 11, 2011

Federal gun raid leaves border town without mayor, police chief


Federal gun raid leaves border town without mayor, police chief - CNN.com

The mayor, police chief and a village trustee in the New Mexico border town of Columbus have been charged along with eight other defendants with buying firearms for illegal export to Mexico, federal authorities said Thursday.

An 84-count indictment accuses the 11 of being what authorities describe as a gun-trafficking ring. The ring bought guns "favored by the Mexican cartels," such as American tactical 9 mm pistols and the so-called "AK-47 pistols," which are weapons resembling AK-47 rifles but with shorter barrels and without rear stocks, U.S. Attorney Kenneth J. Gonzales of New Mexico told CNN.

Authorities say much of the Mexican drug cartel violence is carried out with weapons originating from the United States.The indictment alleges that 12 firearms previously purchased by the defendants were found in Mexico and were traced back to them, authorities said.

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