The body of Ecuadorian Junior Roldán, the feared former leader of the Los Choneros crime gang, was illegally exhumed at Envigado Cemetery, police reported on Wednesday, September 13, 2023.
That morning, an employee at Envigado Cemetery told a priest that one of the entrances to the cemetery had been opened without permission.
“When the father entered, he discovered that … the body” of Roldán had disappeared from the crypt where he was buried last May, according to the municipal police of the Aburrá Valley, where Envigado is located (a neighboring municipality of Medellín in the northwest ). .
Roldán, alias JR, was a fugitive from Ecuadorian justice. In February 2023, he was released from a prison in Guayaquil – the center of operations for several drug trafficking gangs – and given conditional freedom in a decision criticized by that country’s president, Guillermo Lasso.
In March he was the target of an armed attack in which he was injured and the prison authorities lost track of him.
On May 6, alias JR was murdered by his bodyguard in Fredonia, a municipality also in Antioquia, to steal money that he had brought to Colombia after escaping from a prison in Ecuador. Authorities found the body with a gunshot wound to the head in a rural area.
Since no one claimed the body, it was taken to Envigado Cemetery on May 18.
Alias JR has been accused of several murders, attacks and massacres in the Ecuadorian prison system.
Ecuadorian prisons converted into drug fortresses have been the scene of several massacres since 2021, leaving more than 430 inmates dead, dozens of them dismembered and burned.
After the assassination of Los Choneros leader Jorge Luis Zambrano in 2020, the organization split into several factions, according to local press.
Roldán, Zambrano’s former lieutenant, founded Las Águilas, while Adolfo Macías, alias Fito, took command of Los Fatales.
Macías, imprisoned since 2011, was transferred to a maximum security prison following the assassination of presidential candidate Fernando Villavicencio, who was shot dead by Colombian hitmen in early August, a few days before the first round. During the election campaign, the politician reported that the boss had threatened to kill him.
Macías’ transfer was reversed by the courts this week, just over a month before Ecuador’s second presidential round on October 15.
Ecuador is suffering from drug trafficking violence and is facing an increase in murders, extortions, kidnappings and drug trafficking involving local gangs allied with organizations from Colombia and Mexico.