Tiger and giant lizard found at drug cartel leader’s home in major drugs bust

A Bengal tiger, a lizard, firearms and drugs have been found in an property said to belong to a notorious cartel, along with custom made T-shirts bearing the cartel's name.

La Familia Michoacana is a Mexican drug cartel and organised crime syndicate known to produce large amounts of methamphetamine from its clandestine laboratories based in the state of Michoacan.

The seizure of the animals together with the narcotics and guns happened in the municipality of Tlachapa, in the state of Guerrero, located in the southwestern area of Mexico, on September 25.

According to the Attorney General of Guerrero, the property belonged to the leader of the La Familia Michoacana cartel, Johnny Hurtado Oloscuaga, aka "El Pez".

Hurtado has been wanted by federal authorities since 2012. In 2016, the Attorney General’s Office offered an award of 3 million pesos (US $158,000) for information leading to his capture.

He is wanted for at least 10 crimes, and Interpol has also circulated a red notice against him.

Now, authorities say that the Tiger weighed 100 kilograms (220,462 lbs) and was locked in a metal cage during the raid of the property.

A 50-centimetre (1,64-foot) lizard was also found inside a tank.

Both were taken to the Zoochilpan zoo to check on their health.

A rifle and ammunition were also found alongside with 20 grams of cannabis.

At the scene, the authorities were able to identify three green sweatshirt-style T-shirts that had the following words in common: "Familia Michoacana", "Cartel", "Brothers Hurtado".

The authorities are carrying out the corresponding investigations to find out in whose name the property is accredited to clarify the case.

In recent weeks, the news has been continuous in Mexico about the seizures of exotic animals that have become the favourite pets of men and women with money, politicians and even drug traffickers in Mexico, according to local newspaper ElSolDeMexico.

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