A reigning Mexican beauty queen from the drug-plagued state of Sinaloa was arrested with suspected gang members in a truck filled with guns and ammunition, police said Tuesday.
GUADALAJARA, Mexico — A reigning Mexican beauty queen from the drug-plagued state of Sinaloa was arrested with suspected gang members in a truck filled with guns and ammunition, police said Tuesday.
Miss Sinaloa 2008 Laura Zuniga stared at the ground as she stood squeezed between seven alleged gunmen lined up before journalists. Soldiers wearing ski masks guarded the 23-year-old model and the suspects.
Zuniga was arrested shortly before midnight Monday at a military checkpoint in Zapopan, just outside the colonial city of Guadalajara, said Jalisco state police director, Francisco Alejandro Solorio.
Zuniga was riding in one of two trucks, where soldiers found a large stash of weapons, including two AR-15 assault rifles, .38 specials, 9-mm handguns, nine magazines, 633 cartridges and $53,300 in U.S. currency, Solorio said.
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Zuniga told police she was planning on traveling to Bolivia and Colombia with the men to go shopping, Solorio said.
In October, the former preschool teacher won the Hispanoamerican Queen beauty contest against competitors from across Latin America.
She placed third in the Nuestra Belleza Mexico pageant in Monterrey in September. That pageant sends its winner to the Miss Universe contest. For placing third, she was expected to represent Mexico in the 2009 Miss International contest.
Zuniga is from the Pacific Coast state of Sinaloa, the home of the powerful cartel of the same name. It was not immediately known whether Zuniga and the men were being investigated for drug ties.