Mexican Rapper QBA Confesses to Dissolving Students’ Bodies in Acid for Cartel
Mexican rapper QBA has confessed to disposing the bodies of three missing film students in sulfuric acid for the Jalisco New Generation Cartel. The film students were abducted in Tonala, near Guadalajara, in March after they had left a ranch where they were filming a school project. The ranch was being watched by cartel members waiting for a rival gang leader — and apparently mistook the students for members of that rival gang.
One of the three students, Javier Salomón, was tortured by the cartel, and when it was determined that he and his friends weren’t members of a rival gang, they executed all three of them. According to police, QBA was told that evening to dispose of their bodies. Tubs of sulfuric acid were found at a third location where QBA is believed to have dissolved the bodies.
QBA, whose real name is Christian Omar Palma Gutierrez, said he’d been recruited earlier in the year to do work for the cartel for 3,000 pesos per week. That comes out to about $159 US dollars. QBA has over 125,000 subscribers on his YouTube channel, and several of his rap videos have over 1 million views. Investigators say they’re combing through his videos for clues to other crimes he may have committed for the cartel, though the only video QBA has posted to his channel in 2018 is a guest appearance on rapper Nez Lemus’s track “Humildemente Bandido.”
QBA and another suspect have been charged with aggravated kidnapping. Authorities say five other members of the cartel wanted in connection with these crimes are still at large.
Mexico is in the middle of a murder epidemic, with over 25,000 in 2017 alone. And three-quarters of those murders are believed to be connected to organized crime. Late last year, Mexican YouTuber Juan Luis Laguna Rosales was murdered by the Jalisco New Generation Cartel, supposedly for posting a video critical of gang boss “El Mencho”. And in February 2018, YouTuber Nana Pelucas was killed after she revealed information about the cartels in her videos.
And now comes the murder of these three film students, who were just in the wrong place at the wrong time. They had apparently chosen the ranch as a shooting location as it belonged to one of their aunts. But the house was being watched as it was a former hangout for the Nueva Plaza gang. The Jalisco Cartel apparently believed a Nueva Plaza gang boss who had recently been released from prison would show up there.
That unnamed aunt has been connected to a human trafficking ring running out of massage parlors in Guadalajara. The murders of the three students have outraged a nation already overcome by violence and grief. Filmmaker Guillermo Del Toro tweeted:
Mexican presidential candidate Jaime Rodriguez Calderon tweeted:
Calderon and others have also been using the hashtag “No Somos Tres, Somos Todxs” — which roughly translates to “It’s not three, it’s all of us”.
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