54 Juarez police officers under criminal investigation, according to the chief

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The entire intelligence unit of the municipal police under surveillance after the arrest of their boss for kidnapping and organized crime

EL PASO, Texas (Report to the border– Fifty-four municipal police officers who served under the orders of a commander now jailed for kidnapping and organized criminal activity are under investigation, said police chief Cesar Omar Muñoz.

Until a few days ago, officers were part of an intelligence unit tasked with identifying homes, businesses and street corners where drugs were sold. Their former commander, Aldo Ivan Saenz Tocoli, and eight of his officers are now in federal custody.

“(He) had a large number of officers conducting investigations. […] A few days ago, we found out that they were also doing illegal things, like crimes. We don’t know for sure, but there is a federal investigation into serious crimes, ”Muñoz told Border Report. “We cannot judge them, but inside (the municipal police) we are investigating every officer in this unit.”

Saenz was investigated in June after being accused of torturing and robbing suspected criminals. Other allegations include asking random individuals for money under threat of arrest on false drug charges.

Saenz rushed to learn of the investigation, but remained on the police department’s payroll under medical leave. Juarez mayor Cruz Perez Cuellar said he was investigating who kept him on the city’s payroll.

Saenz was arrested last week at a home in Central Juarez by Mexican federal agents and members of the Mexican National Guard.

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