11 years after the attack on the Casino Royale in Mexico, relatives of victims accuse re-victimization

The Casino Royale was attacked by suspected members of the Zetas.

Photo: Thierry Chesnot/Getty Images

After the Mexican government failed to publicly apologize to the relatives of the 52 fatalities of the fire attack on the Casino Royale, registered in the state of Nuevo León 11 years ago, the group’s spokeswoman, Samara Pérez Muñiz, assured this Thursday that the authorities, with their actions, continue to revictimize them.

Relatives of the fatal victims, one of the deadliest organized crime attacks in Mexico, carried out this Thursday the reinstallation of the memorial crosses, located on the site where the building was.

The Casino Royale was attacked by alleged members of the Zetas, on August 25, 2011 and according to the authorities, the attack was due to the fact that the owner of the business refused to pay a “fee” (extortion) to the criminal group.

“The Executive Commission for Attention to Victims mentioned to us that for reasons of the agenda of Undersecretary Alejandro Encinas he did not have the space for this day (when the tragedy was 11 years old)”, mentioned the spokeswoman for the families of the victims

He indicated that the event, which will be held on August 31, will have to attend municipal, state and federal authorities.

Pérez Muñiz pointed out that of all the authorities, the only one who mentioned and acted on the case this day was the mayor of Monterrey, Luis Donaldo Colosio Riojas.

The mayor supported the construction of the simple memorial that was reinstalled in the place where the casino was installed, in the city of Monterrey, capital of the state of Nuevo León, in the north of the country.

Pérez Muñiz also considered it a lack of respect that they are not authorized to use the Government Palace to hold the public apology event because from his perspective there are no first-class citizens.

On the other hand, 11 years after the atrocious attack, the relatives of the fatal victims demanded that there be firm sentences for those accused.

“Since the beginning of the events we had knowledge of 27 accused, only by the state,” he said.

He said that under the administration of President Felipe Calderón (2006-2012) two lines of investigation were followed and the people who were apprehended by the authorities are detained for federal crimes, but not for the murder of the 52 people.

Among the fatalities of the attack there were two pregnant women, which is why the group, which emerged on this 11th anniversary of death, was baptized as Casino Royale 52+2.

In addition, to ask for justice after more than a decade of the tragedy, the relatives placed floral offerings, wrote their names on some footprints painted in red on the floor and reinstalled the crosses.

Samara Pérez led a prayer in memory of the deceased, among whom was her son Brad Xavier Muraira Pérez.

The group’s spokeswoman pointed out that the public apologies that will be offered will be for the omissions of all the authorities, from the Ministry of the Interior (Interior) that allowed the operation of the casino, to Civil Protection that did not verify the exit doors of the property.

Who should be behind bars?, he was questioned and replied: “Many officials, we would have to see, precisely for that reason the public apologies of the three levels of government.”

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