Mexican officials said late Wednesday that they are investigating a homemade DVD purporting to show four drug hitmen for the Gulf Cartel being beaten and interrogated, then one of them being shot in the head.
The DVD, time-stamped May 16, was being analyzed by Mexico’s Attorney General’s Office, according to an official there who said he wasn’t authorized to give his name. He had no further details of the investigation.
Last month, a copy of the DVD was sent anonymously to the Kitsap Sun, a newspaper in Bremerton, Wash. That newspaper forwarded it to The Dallas Morning News, which published a story for Thursday editions on its contents.
According to the News, the DVD shows four men sitting bruised, bloody and bound before a curtain of black garbage bags. Prodded by an unseen interrogator, they describe themselves as hitmen for the Gulf Cartel, detailing how they kidnapped, tortured and killed their enemies, including a radio reporter.
The reporter, Dolores Guadalupe Garcia, worked for a station in the northern state of Nuevo Leon. She died of multiple gunshot wounds in April, and her attackers were never identified.
In addition to crimes already committed, the men discuss what they describe as the planned killing of Alejandro Dominguez, according to the News. Dominguez was gunned down June 8 hours after becoming the police chief of the border city of Nuevo Laredo.
That killing prompted President Vicente Fox to send more federal troops and agents to the city, which is on the front line of Mexican drug cartels’ battle for territory.
Six minutes of confessions
On the tape, the News reported, the alleged hitmen claim to be working with Mexican law enforcement. Two of the men say they are former soldiers trying to recruit military colleagues and federal agents to work for the cartel.
After six minutes of confessions, the News reported, a hand in a black glove appears from behind the camera and shoots one of the men in the head with a 9mm pistol. The hand is the only part of the interrogators to appear on-camera.
Jeff Brody, managing editor of the Kitsap Sun, told the News that two identical copies of the DVD were sent to editor Scott Ware in mid-October.
“We still have no idea why the package was sent to him, and by whom,” Brody said.
He said the newspaper forwarded the DVD to the News because an Internet search turned up an article the newspaper had written about Garcia’s slaying. He said the newspaper also sent the DVDs to the FBI.