Gang Violence at Resort Claims Life of US Woman

( – Before heading out of the country, Americans should consult the Bureau of Consular Affairs with the US Department of State. The bureau issues travel advisories so people are well-informed about certain areas outside of the US. In August 2023, the entity updated its travel advisory for Mexico, stating those traveling to the Quintana Roo state should exercise increased caution.

On February 12, Fox News reported that an American woman died at a popular beach resort in Tulum, which is in the Quintana Roo region. The 44-year-old, Niko Honarbakhsh, was reportedly caught in the crossfire and hit with a stray bullet during a drug deal gone bad.

The alleged drug dealer also died during the incident. He apparently was in possession of cocaine, pills, and baggies of unidentified “brown granulated powder” when he died. Prosecutors looking into the case believe he was part of a gang.

Indeed, the bureau’s advisory for areas like Tulum stated that innocent tourists have been injured by shootings between rival gangs. The warning said victims of both violent and non-violent crimes in the area have taken place both inside and outside tourist areas. It advises US citizens to be aware of their surroundings to avoid dangerous situations.

Sadly, that’s not always possible, as was the case for Ms. Honarbakhsh. People reported that the American was from Los Angeles, California, but was living in Cancun.

The Quintana Roo State Attorney General’s Office released a statement about the February 9 incident. The release made it clear that the American had no ties to the drug dealer, Belize.

Earlier reports linked the two victims, but several reports corrected the earlier assumption, stating there was no evidence of a connection. The office also said investigators were working with two separate groups to identify the murderers and bring them to justice.

Both victims will undergo an autopsy to confirm the cause of death.

~Here’s to Our Liberty!

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