Mexican police announced last night the capture of alleged drug lord Carlos Beltran Leyva in the Pacific coast state of Sinaloa, just two weeks after his even more powerful brother, Arturo, was killed in a shootout with troops—back-to-back victories in President Felipe Calderon's drug war. Mexican officials in the past have described Carlos Beltran Levya, 40, as a key member of the gang, but it was unclear whether he took over as chief of the cartel.
A third brother, Alfredo, was arrested in January 2008, and at least one other, Mario, remains at large. The arrest of Carlos Beltran Leyva sent a strong signal that Calderon has no intention of backing down, despite a reprisal massacre of four relatives of a marine who died in the shootout that took out Arturo Beltran Levya. However, authorities were far quieter in announcing the latest capture, waiting three days. The downfall of the Beltran Leyva brothers has raised fears of an intensified turf battle.