Six people were arrested in Cancun, and they are being investigated to find out who gave them the order to cut down protected vegetation by federal law.
A group of six people were arrested at noon when they were cutting down mangrove specimens in perfect condition, at kilometer 5.4 of the Cancun hotel zone, two days after Hurricane Delta passed through the area.
About 200 meters of vegetation right next to to the Nichupté Lagoon was marked presumably to be cut down. Red numbers remained as evidence of the order received by the crew of workers, which is already under police custody.
Authorities from the National Commission for Protected Areas (Conanp) and the Federal Attorney for Environmental Protection (Profepa) arrived at the site to verify the damage caused in the area and have asked the police authorities to inquire who gave the order to the detained workers.
Biologist Patricia Santos, from Conanp explained that after the inspection she carried out upon arrival, she found that sea grapes were cut, but the most serious thing is that they cut down specimens of three protected species: white mangrove, button mangrove or gray mangrove and Rhizophora mangle (red mangrove).
“These are species of wetlands and as all these species have a protection function, they absorb and attenuate the impact of natural phenomena, they are filters that purify the water from the lagoon system or wherever they are,” explained the expert.
“They function as water purifiers and water treatment plants and as protectors of the coast, of the hotel infrastructure and of the fixation of the soil by its root system; they are protectors of the city ”, the expert added.
#AHORA | Detienen a 6 personas con motosierras, que talaron mangle en perfectas condiciones en el kilómetro 5.6 de la zona hotelera de #Cancún. La @PROFEPA_Mx y la @CONANP_mx ya están en el lugar.— Novedades de Q.Roo (@novedadesqroo) October 9, 2020
📹 @PAOCHIOMANTE pic.twitter.com/rzlpWmHx87
She specified that any mangrove, inside or outside a protected area, is a species protected by the Mexican government, therefore its devastation is a federal crime.
The National Fund for the Promotion of Tourism (Fonatur) will investigate who has the concession of that part of the lagoon because it is obvious that they ordered the devastation.
“The only person interested in cutting down these mangroves is whoever has this concession; I’m going to see who it is, I’m going to ask the Attorney General to try to question who sent this crew because they are the ones who got caught red-handed, but there is an intellectual author, who is interested in cutting this down and we will proceed legally against them, ”warned Raúl Bermúdez, delegate of the agency in Quintana Roo.