Mexican Drug Lord Killed In Raid


The suspected leader of Mexico's La Familia drug cartel was gunned down in a raid by security forces, the government said, handing president Felipe Calderon a major victory in his war on drug gangs.

Nazario Moreno, known as ""The Craziest One,"" died in a shootout late last night in the Apatzingan area, a La Familia stronghold in western Mexico, national security spokesman Alejandro Poire said.

Moreno was believed to be the leader of the cult-like La Familia drug cartel, dominant in Mr Calderon's home state of Michoacan.

Moreno preached Bible scripture mixed with self-help slogans to gang members and promoted a mystique unique among Mexican gangs by claiming to protect the local population.

""Diverse pieces of information obtained during the raid all indicate that Nazario Moreno Gonzalez was killed yesterday,"" Mr Poire said in a televised news conference.

At least 11 people died as security forces fought cartel members during operations that began Wednesday evening, including three suspected drug gang leaders and five police.

Three civilians were also killed in running battles in which gang members burned cars and blocked roads.

Wanted in the United States and with a $2.4 million bounty on his head in Mexico, Moreno is the second drug kingpin to be eliminated in just over a month.

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