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GANG VIOLENCE

Police arrest 10 in connection with gun death of girl in Seville

Suspects found with cash, weapons and gold hiding out in Costa del Sol

Police search a vehicle in the Tres Mil Viviendas area of Seville Friday. Ampliar foto
Police search a vehicle in the Tres Mil Viviendas area of Seville Friday. EL PAIS

Nine people were arrested early Friday morning in the Costa del Sol in connection with the death of a seven-year-old girl during a gunfight in the marginal neighborhood of Tres Mil Viviendas in Seville last Tuesday night.

All the detainees are members of the drug clan known as Los Perla; they had fled the Andalusian capital shortly after the incident in fear of reprisals from their rivals, Los Marianos, whom the victims were related to. The police also arrested another suspect in Huelva and now believe they have found everyone involved in the shootout, which is thought to have erupted over drug disputes in an area accustomed to similar skirmishes. In 2009, members of Los Marianos were involved in another firefight that resulted in the death of a minor.

The apartment in Calahonda, Mijas (Málaga) where the police made their latest arrests also contained two guns and two rifles, as well as 150,000 euros in cash and eight kilograms of gold. The detainees were taken to the police precinct in Málaga awaiting transfer to Seville for interrogation by homicide detectives.

But the main problem now lies in determining who exactly fired the fatal shot that lodged itself in the back of Encarnación S.S., since numerous people participated in the shootout. The police are investigating whether the weapons found in the apartment on Friday are the same ones that were used during the fatal confrontation.

The genesis of the case lies in an ongoing confrontation between drug clans in the Tres Mil Viviendas neighborhood that has already caused several acts of violence in the past. Although the girl and her parents, who were also wounded in the shootout, were distant relatives of Los Marianos members, they had no direct relation with the warring parties and are believed to be the victims of collateral damage.

According to the head of the neighborhood association, Rafael Pertegal, incidents of this nature “happen very frequently.”