The developments in federal court in Washington also provided new details about the ambush, showing that U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement special agents Jaime Zapata and Victor Avila were traveling near San Luis Potosi, Mexico, when a
When the agents refused and identified themselves as American diplomats from
Zapata died at the scene. Avila was seriously injured.
Pleading guilty was Julian Zapata Espinoza, also known as "El Piolin," 32, and described as a hit squad commander for the Zetas, a heavily armed Mexican narco-trafficking cartel with deep drug and smuggling routes north into the United States. Zapata Espinoza, like the other three defendants, now faces life in prison with no parole.
But Ronald C. Machen Jr., the U.S. attorney in Washington, said others wanted in the ambush are believed to be hiding in Mexico.
"Our work in this critical case will continue until all of those who participated are held accountable," he said.