Cartel Suspect in 2013 DFW Killing Arrested


An aerial shot of Southlake Town Square | Image by cityofsouthlake.com

A Mexican cartel leader linked to the shooting death of a defense attorney in 2013 in Southlake was arrested by Mexican authorities, according to a tweet by the Mexican Attorney General’s Office on Sunday.

Jose Rodolfo Villarreal-Hernandez had been placed on the FBI’s 10 Most Wanted list as the suspect behind a conspiracy to commit murder. A reward of up to $1 million had been offered for information leading to his arrest.

Known as “El Gato,” Villarreal-Hernandez is believed to have conspired in the commissioned killing of Juan Jesus Guerrero-Chapa, a Mexican defense attorney.

Allegedly acting on orders from Villareal-Hernandez, two assassins shot Guerrero-Chapa multiple times while he was shopping with his wife in Southlake Town Square.

Guerrero-Chapa was also the personal attorney for Osiel Cardenas, the former head of Mexico’s deadly Gulf Cartel, and was said to have been an informant for the U.S. authorities.

His wife, Julia Tijerina de la Garza, testified that he knew he was being targeted and had lived in fear for his life for over two years before being killed.

Before being gunned down in front of his wife in Southlake, Guerrero-Chapa was reportedly tracked and surveilled using advanced surveillance and GPS technology.

According to the Fort-Worth Star Telegram, three men were sentenced in connection to tracking Guerrero-Chapa in Texas — Jose Luis Cepeda-Cortes, Jesus “Chuy” Gerardo Ledezma-Cepeda, and Jesus Gerardo Ledezma-Campano. The assassins, known only as “Clorox” and “Captain,” remain on the run.

Villarreal-Hernandez was indicted on federal charges by a Fort Worth judge after the incident.

According to a news release, he was arrested in Mexico City and the U.S. government has 60 days to request his extradition.

In 2018, Mexican authorities arrested the suspect’s brother, Ramon Villarreal-Hernandez, who was extradited to the U.S. two years later on charges related to the killing of Guerrero-Chapa.

He pleaded guilty last year, according to media reports.

In Dallas, 282 violent crimes have been reported so far this month, five of which were homicides. The Dallas Express continues to report regularly on crime in the metroplex, including tracking the city council members and other political leaders responsible for the districts in which incidents occur.

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