TAPACHULA, Mexico (AP) — An alleged migrant smuggler was killed by police near the Mexico-Guatemala border early Monday after the driver of the pickup truck he was traveling in ignored police officers’ order to stop.
The Chiapas state prosecutor’s office said in a statement that five migrants, whose nationalities were not given, were also traveling in the truck with the driver and the man who was shot.
The state prosecutor’s office did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
The driver told investigators they had picked up the migrants in Comitan de Dominguez on the Mexican side of the border. They were headed north when they encountered municipal police from San Cristobal de las Casas.
Someone in the truck opened fire on police, who then responded by shooting at the truck, according to an official in the state prosecutor’s office who was not authorized to speak about the case.
The victim’s death sparked protests in San Cristobal and a police vehicle was burned.
While receiving less attention than other migratory routes in southern Mexico, smugglers frequently use the sparsely-populated mountains to move people north from Central America.