The Israel Police expect the killing of two Israeli criminals, Ben Suthi and Alon Azoulay, in Mexico City on Wednesday to lead to attempted killings in Israel.
Several police divisions have been holding consultations, with the aid of representative from the Mexican police. Local police are beefing up their monitoring of key figures in Israeli criminal organizations and trying to obtain intelligence that will help avert an escalation of violence in the Israeli underworld.
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Suthi was released six months ago after serving 17 years for attempted murder. In May, he left Israel for Mexico, where he joined Azoulay. The two had recently been in conflict with the Musli Israeli crime family.
Police say Suthi joined up with local criminals in Mexico and was dealing drugs in the country as well as in South America. He was in contact with Erez Akrishevsky, who was extradited from Mexico to Israel this week, although police do not believe there is a connection between the arrest of the escaped felon and Suthi’s murder.
Police suspect that Suthi and Akrishevsky murdered another Israeli criminal in Mexico in 2002, though they were not convicted of that crime. Suthi “was a very violent and very dangerous criminal,” says one police official. “His assassination is sure to stir up a lot of trouble.”
Suthi and Azoulay were gunned down at a shopping center in Mexico City. The reports in Mexico said a woman entered a restaurant in the shopping center and opened fire, also wounding a police officer in her attempt to escape, and was apprehended.
Two other men who were with her got away. The woman reportedly said the shooting was motivated by a romantic spat. Israeli police are skeptical of this claim, given the identity of the victims, their connection to conflict between underworld organizations in central Israel, and intelligence information obtained in the time since Suthi was released from prison.
The Israeli Foreign Ministry confirmed Thursday that the two had died, adding that acting Israeli consul in Mexico, Eli Levi, is on his way to the scene and is in contact with local authorities.
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