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Mexico arrests leader of Gulf Cartel drug gang

  • Mexican authorities have arrested a leader of the country's Gulf Cartel in one of the highest-profile arrests as part of President Felipe Calderon's war on drug gangs.

    Mario Cardenas was apprehended in the northeastern state of Tamaulipas on Monday by Mexican marines. The following day, he was paraded in front of the media in Mexico City.

    The Gulf Cartel's influence has diminished in recent years due to a feud with one of Mexico's most ruthless gangs, the Zetas, which initially provided protection to the cartel's operations.

    Cardenas led the cartel after his brother Antonio Cardenas, known as "Tony Tormenta," was killed in a 2010 gunfight with the Mexican government.

    He was arrested with weapons, ammunition, around $10,000 worth of pesos in cash and four small envelopes containing a white powder beleived to be cocaine.

    Calderon's six-year offensive against cartels has resulted in more than 55,000 drug-related killings, including 3,000 police and soldiers.