Nine people were killed when a band of gunmen dressed as policemen entered Tuxpan prison in Mexico’s Guerrero state early Friday morning, and opened fire, according to Reuters.
The six gunmen arrived at the gate of the prison in the Toyota Tacoma pickup truck, which was later identified as being stolen, around 2 a.m., according to reports. The men, who were dressed as police officers, claimed to have been delivering a new inmate to the prison. A guard let them in, then once inside, the attackers started shooting at inmates, and then at guards in the watch tower. According to a report in Spanish by Quadratin, the men were looking for an inmate called Ismael Ocampo Alvarez, also known as ‘La Naila’.
Guards returned the fire and five of the six gunmen were killed in the exchange, as were four inmates. The sixth alleged gunman was taken to hospital for treatment, along with a prison guard. The two men were the only people listed as injured.
Security forces from the state department of public security and the Mexican army were dispatched to restore order in the prison. Peace was achieved that morning.
Prison unrest is common in Mexico and criminal gangs are known to attempt to take over correctional facilities.
Guerrero state in southern Mexico, in which the tourist destination, Acapulco, is found, is among the country’s most violent. It is home to several drug cartels, including the Zetas and the Knights Templar, who compete for control of drug-trafficking routes.