Mexico Says Killing of Israelis Linked to Money Laundering

Mexican media reporting that gunmen worked for the Jalisco cartel, but officials refuse to confirm the link

A police car is parked near a crime scene where two Israeli men were shot dead, at a shopping mall in Mexico City, Mexico July 25, 2019.
\ EDGARD GARRIDO/ REUTERS

Mexican officials say the shooting death of two Israelis at an upscale shopping mall in Mexico City is likely linked to drug cartels and money laundering.

Mexico's top police official won't say which cartel may have been involved in the brazen assault, which included a diversionary attack with an assault rifle against police outside the mall.

Local media reported the gunmen may have worked for the notorious Jalisco cartel, but officials refused to confirm that.

Public Safety Secretary Alfonso Durazo said Friday, "There are links to Mexican criminal organizations, mainly (for) money laundering."

A woman wearing a blond wig disguise shot the two Israelis men at a restaurant inside the mall.

Though the woman initially claimed the killings were a crime of passion, prosecutors say she later changed her story.

Meanwhile, the Israel Police expect the killing of two Israelis, Ben Suthi and Alon Azoulay, who have criminal backgrounds, 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.

Josh Breiner contributed to this report.