NM chief charged in gun smuggling probe
By Sue Major Holmes
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Authorities say the mayor and police chief of a tiny New Mexico border town accused of conspiring to illegally send firearms to Mexico are due in federal court.
Federal prosecutors say the Columbus officials and eight others are set for initial appearances on Friday in Las Cruces. An indictment says the defendants bought and tried to export firearms favored by Mexican drug cartels beginning in January 2010.
Law enforcement officers arrested the suspects Thursday morning as they carried out search warrants at the Columbus Police Department, a gun shop and eight homes.
Border state gun shops are a chief source of weapons smuggling into Mexico, and Mexican officials fighting that country's increasingly violent cartels have complained to U.S. officials about the flow of firearms.
Copyright 2011 Associated Press
Copyright Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
Recommended for you
Join the discussion
PoliceOne top 5
- After HOA demands pro-cop flag taken down, family shows support for LE in a different way
- Video: SC motorcycle pursuit ends in fatal wreck
- 50 to 60 teens swarm Calif. train, rob weekend riders
- Sheriff: Suspect opened fire on Texas deputy’s children, home in 'attack'
- 10 ways law enforcement ruined me as a woman