Arrests made in death of Mexican activist
Mariano Abarca Roblero opposed barite mine operated by Calgary-based company
Police in Mexico have arrested three men suspected of killing an activist opposed to a mine operated by Calgary-based Blackfire Exploration.
Mariano Abarca Roblero, 51, was shot in front of his home on Nov. 27 in the municipality of Chicomuselo in the Mexican state of Chiapas. The local businessman and community leader was well known as a vocal opponent of the Blackfire-owned barite mine in the small town near the Guatemalan border.
The Calgary company operates in Mexico through a subsidiary and has three mines in the state of Chiapas. It posted a statement in English and Spanish on its website expressing condolences and solidarity with "all the families that have suffered by the effects of any criminal acts" but did not explictly refer to Abarca Roblero.
"Our company supports the authorities in charge of security, justice administration and resolving the regretful crimes that sprang in this locality," the statement said.
Hector Flores, a spokesperson for the attorney general of Chiapas, confirmed Tuesday the three men were being detained while investigators continue to speak with witnesses and gather evidence.
Flores said one person is accused of the shooting and the other two are accused of being accomplices.
Authorities are looking into allegations that two of the men worked for the mining company.
Abarca Roblero accused the mine of harming the environment and creating conflict and division within his community.
Blackfire Exploration insists it had nothing to do with Abarca Roblero's death.