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May 27, 2016

Murder in Paradise, El Diablo is Executed in a Hail of Gunfire

Delmar "El Diablo" Guerra

The fourth murder for the Corozal District for this year took place on Thursday evening in the village of Paraiso. Thirty-seven year old Delmar Guerra was trailed and executed by two men on a motorcycle a short distance from where he lived. He had just parked his vehicle at a house where he went to pick up his laundry. Now Guerra, who is known by the alias Diablo, is no stranger to the underworld and it is believed that he was executed due to his involvement in narco-trafficking.  The police are working together with their Mexican counterparts on the murder since there was a previous attempt on Guerra’s life three years ago in Calderitas, Chetumal. News Five’s Duane Moody headed north today for some answers. 


Duane Moody, Reporting

He is known up north in Corozal and neighboring Quintano Roo by the alias El Diablo, but on Thursday evening, thirty-seven year old Delmar Guerra was gunned down in Paraiso.  Around four-thirty p.m. Guerra parked his white Chrysler van in front of this house on the main road of the village before he was executed inside his vehicle.


Voice of: Witness [Translated]

“He arrived in his van and honked the horn twice. My son told me, “Mom, he came to pick up the laundry.” I went to the room to fetch the laundry, but the bag was really heavy. I heard like palomita or pop shot and my daughter said, “No, it’s gunshots.” I said, “Oh My God, did someone come to kill us because it occurred in front of my house.” I then said, “Nobody go outside.” I was scared. I thought it was my cousin that came to pick up the clothes, but they said, no it is Delmar that came and not his wife.”


But it appears that Guerra was being monitored and trailed before he was executed by two gunmen riding on a grey dirt bike and dressed in dark clothing wearing helmets. The gunmen were spotted in the village hours before they approached the vehicle and opened shots at the heavily tinted van.


Dennis Arnold

Supt. Dennis Arnold, O.C., Corozal Police

“Upon arrival, we saw a white van with what appears to be bullet holes. Police initial investigation reveals that Delmar Guerra, thirty-seven years, was driving that van and he was being trailed by two persons wearing dark clothing on the motorcycle. The person drove up beside the van and there was where they fired those shots. At this point in time, the police would not be able to say whether they are locals or foreigners. But what we can say is that the cycle was seen in the village some two hours prior to the incident. Apparently, something went wrong with the cycle and the occupants of the cycle; they fixed the cycle but never took off their helmets. They fixed the cycle and they continue their whereabouts.”


Voice of: Witness [Translated]

“Two persons on a motorcycle that were shooting, but we couldn’t see their faces because they had on helmets. They then sped off in that direction. And then neighbors came out shortly after to see what happened. When I came out, I saw that the back door of the van was open and I say him slouched over and on the arm, there was blood. I didn’t come too close because I was still shaken by what happened.”


According to the eyewitness, Guerra was not traveling alone. His ten year old stepson arrived with him in the van and entered the house just seconds before the shooting. Delmar was killed a couple blocks from where he lived in Paraiso Village; his mechanic shop is located across from his mother’s home several villages away in San Joaquin. Marcela Guerra says that she last spoke with her son around three o’clock that afternoon.


Marcela Guerra, Mother of Murder Victim [Translated]

“He was initially here with me. He came around three p.m. and he told me that he was leaving. I asked him, “Why are you leaving so early?” He said it is because he has some paper work to deal with in Corozal Town and he left. I didn’t know anything until his aunt and my two brothers came. They were trying to call my daughter and they looked worried. I asked them, “What’s happening?” They said we need to tell you what happened. They killed your son.”


Marcela Guerra

Marcela was notified of her son’s demise around six p.m. and was taken to the Corozal Community Hospital, but by then the body of Delmar had already been taken to the morgue at the Northern Regional Hospital in Orange Walk.


For Marcela, her family and his loved ones, Delmar was a “pesero” who helped everyone in the village.


Marcela Guerra [Translated]

“He was a good person. Here in San Joaquin, everyone appreciated him, they liked him. He was always willing to help villagers, once he can. Everyone that asked for help; if he had it, he would help them. He was a pesero and afterwards, he came to work here because his dream was always to have a garage. He had his workers and he would be at the work; that’s all he did.”


The family remains in shock, but back in 2013, an attempt was made on the life of “Diablo,” while the businessman was in Calderitas, Chetumal. According to police, Guerra had a reputation as a known underworld figure and while a motive has not been ascertained, they are working with their Mexican counterparts on the incident.



“Do you all have any intelligence to suggest what may have prompted this?”


Supt. Dennis Arnold

“Yes, we have a little.”



“And is it something purely local? Are you able to say what sort of criminal forces are involved?”


Supt. Dennis Arnold

“No I would not be able to say.”



“Is it related to anything in Mexico? Are you liaising with your counterparts on the other side of the border?”


Supt. Dennis Arnold

“Yes we are liaising with them; I believe it is a little bit of both.”



“You said that you all had been aware of him operating in the underworld. Is that fair?”


Supt Dennis Arnold




“Are you all able to say…do you believe that he was active in the drug trade?”


Supt. Dennis Arnold

“I cannot say; there are only rumors.”


Guerra’s licensed firearm, a nine millimeter pistol, was retrieved by police from the van. Duane Moody for News Five.

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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