Mexico Hunts For Suspects Who Downed Police Chopper

Mexico hunts for suspects who downed police chopper

EL CHAUZ, Mexico, (APP - UrduPoint / Pakistan Point News -7th Sept,2016) : Authorities hunted on Wednesday for gang suspects who shot down a helicopter carrying police in western Mexico, killing four aboard in a clash highlighting the government's struggle to quell violence in the region.

The suspects apparently used a high-powered, .50-caliber Barrett rifle to bring down the helicopter in Michoacan state on Tuesday, killing the pilot and three officers, said National Security Commissioner Renato Sales.

"It was indeed shot down," Sales told Radio Formula. Michoacan's governor, Silvano Aureoles, had initially said Tuesday that the helicopter was shot down but later said he could no longer confirm if that was the case.

Sales told Radio Formula that one suspect was detained but "I think he died," and that authorities are "working to capture those responsible" for Tuesday's attack. It is the second time since 2015 that a gang has downed a helicopter.

Last year, the Jalisco New Generation drug cartel in neighboring Jalisco state used a rocket launcher to hit a military helicopter, killing seven soldiers and a policewoman. The clash near the village of El Chauz happened amid a resurgence of violence in Michoacan, a historic flashpoint in Mexico's war on drugs.