The terrible fate of the judge related to the extradition of Chapo Guzman to the US
In January 2017, Bermúdez took on numerous cases involving major drug trafficking charges, including the extradition to the United States of Joaquín "El Chapo" Guzmán Loera, the founder of the Sinaloa cartel, who was handed over to the United States months after the judge's murder.
On Oct. 17, 2016, Judge Vicente Antonio Bermúdez Zacarías, 37, was running through the streets near his home when someone shot him in the head from behind, leaving the man dead in front of his house in the Llano Grande neighborhood in the municipality of Metepec in the State of Mexico.
As a district judge in federal civil lawsuits and appeals, Bermudez had been tasked with resolving issues related to drug trafficking, including whether to approve the transfer of criminal leaders from one prison to another.
A security camera caught the moment when a hitman approached him from behind while playing sports and shot him just inches from his head. In this video, broadcast at the time by the media, you can see the judge wearing black pants, while he was running around 8:00 a.m. on Árbol de la Vida Street. Suddenly, you see a guy in a long-sleeved black shirt sneak up behind him, put a gun to his head and shot him.
After the incident, paramedics arrived at the exclusive subdivision, attended to the federal official, and transferred him to the IMSS clinic number 251 where he died after the impact.
In a statement, the Federal Judiciary Council (CJF) condemned the leakage of the video of the judge's murder. "The leak of the video violates the obligatory legal reserve of the investigation, compromises its effectiveness and affects the rights of the victims, in this case, their family," it said.
The CJF stated that the leaking of such important evidence revealed "a different and certainly repugnant interest", as it did not preserve a valuable element that "may allow the timely arrest of those responsible".
El Chapo and the crime
Bermúdez took on numerous cases involving major drug trafficking charges, including the extradition to the United States of Joaquín "El Chapo" Guzmán Loera, the founder of the Sinaloa cartel, who was handed over to the U.S. months after the judge's murder in January 2017.
"It is an abuse" to link Judge Bermúdez's murder to the case of the Sinaloa cartel's founder, said lawyer Carlos Castillo, who was part of Guzmán Loera's defense, in an interview with Radio Fórmula.
According to Castillo, his team filed an appeal against Guzmán's extradition in February 2016 at the Fifth District Court of Amparo and Federal Civil Trials in the state of Mexico (center), which issued a temporary suspension of the extradition process. "But at that time, at that point, Mr. Vicente was not yet the head of that court," said Castillo, who said he had had "close" dealings with Bermudez.
The case regained notoriety in 2019 when the attorney general's office arrested the judge's wife, Marisol "N", on charges of alleged participation in the crime.
"The Attorney General's Office (FGR) obtained from a District Judge specialized in the Accusatory Criminal System, an order to link a process against a woman, for her probable participation in the crime of aggravated homicide," reads a paragraph in a statement issued on October 14, 2019.
"The Control Judge issued a decision to link the case to a trial against Marisol "M," who was given a precautionary measure of unofficial preventive detention and a three-month period for the conclusion of the complementary investigation," the statement added.
"Derived from the above and three years after the event, the Attorney General's Office resumed investigations, with contributions from the Federal Ministerial Police (PFM) and experts, under the direction of the Federal Public Ministry (MPF), with the collaboration of the Attorney General's Office of the State of Mexico and the National Information Center," the document said.