Mexico navy: Prints confirm cartel leader slain

Associated Press
View photos
ALTERNATIVE CROP OF XLAT102 - FILE - This undated file photo, downloaded from the Mexico's Attorney General's Office most wanted criminals webpage on Nov. 2, 2010, shows alleged Zeta drug cartel leader and founder Heriberto Lazcano Lazcano in an undisclosed location. The Mexican navy says on Monday, Oct. 8, 2012, Lazcano has apparently been killed in a firefight with marines in the Mexican northern border state of Coahuila. (AP Photo/Mexico's Attorney General's Office, file)

MEXICO CITY (AP) — The Mexican navy says fingerprints confirm that Zetas cartel leader Heriberto Lazcano was fatally shot in a firefight with marines, but federal authorities don't have the body.

The navy says that fingerprints taken from the body of a man shot Sunday in the northern state of Coahuila were entered into a forensic database and matched the records of Lazcano. He was an army special forces deserter whose brutal paramilitary tactics helped define the devastating six-year war among Mexico's drug gangs and authorities. It also says photos of the body appear to match Lazcano.

The statement refers to reports in several Mexican newspapers that cite unnamed sources as saying that the body has since disappeared. The statement says only that it gave the body to local authorities, and offers no details.