NewsCrime World

Leader of notoriously violent Zetas cartel arrested

Arrest: Omar Trevino Morales
Arrest: Omar Trevino Morales

Mexican federal forces have arrested the leader of the notorious Zetas drug cartel, officials say.

Omar Trevino Morales, alias Z-42, was arrested in a pre-dawn raid in a suburb of the northern city of Monterrey, federal officials said.

The Mexican government had offered a 30 million peso (£1.3 million) reward for his capture on weapons and organised crime charges.

The suspect is the brother of Miguel Angel Trevino Morales, described as the most bloodthirsty leader of Mexico's most violent cartel.

Miguel Angel was arrested in July 2013, almost a year after marines killed the Zetas' other biggest leader, Heriberto Lazcano - known as El Lazca.

Trevino Morales is said to have been arrested in a pre-dawn raid in San Pedro Garza Garcia, a wealthy suburb of Monterrey.

As well as the Mexican bounty, the US Drug Enforcement Administration had offered a 5 million dollar (£3.2 million) reward for his capture, saying he was wanted on drug-trafficking charges, but listed "Omar" as an alias and his given name as Alejandro.

The Zetas carved a path of brutality, bloodshed and mutilated bodies across northern Mexico during their turf battles with the rival Gulf cartel.

Much of the violence along Mexico's north-east border is now due to internal battles among factions of the Gulf cartel.