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Gregorio Villanueva Salas: Zetas drug cartel chief arrested (VIDEO)

Gregorio Villanueva Salas, a senior member of Mexico's Zetas drug cartel who is suspected of running piracy operations for the criminal organization, was arrested earlier this week.

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Federal police wait to transport alleged Zetas members who had been arrested recently. (ALFREDO ESTRELLA/AFP/Getty Images)

Gregorio Villanueva Salas, a senior member of Mexico's Zetas drug cartel who is suspected of running piracy operations for the criminal organization, was arrested earlier this week.

Known as the "Czar of Piracy," Salas is accused of producing and distributing pirated discs in Zacatecas, San Luis Potosi, Nuevo Leon and Coahuila states, according to the International Business Times. He also faces charges in connection with several grenade attacks on schools, as well as media and military headquarters.

Salas was arrested by army troops on Monday in Monterrey, the capital of Nuevo Leon, along with three other members of the Zetas gang, reported EFE. The four were brought in front of reporters on Thursday in Mexico City.

More from GlobalPost: Mexico: 14 dismembered bodies found outside city hall

Considered one of Zetas leader Heriberto Lazcano's right-hand men, Salas told military interrogators that the 14 bodies found last week in a vehicle in Ciudad Mante, Tamaulipas, belonged to members of his cartel, according to Agence France-Presse. It was also announced on Wednesday that another 50 members of the Zetas — including two policemen, women and children — were also arrested in Nuevo Leon.

The Zetas is considered one of the most brutal drug cartels in the Americas, reported the IBT. It has an estimated 10,000 members spread across the region and is known for its dramatic turf wars with rival gangs.

Salas and and the other three suspects face organized crime, weapons, piracy and other charges, according to EFE.

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/americas/mexico/120614/gregorio-villanueva-salas-zetas-drug-cartel-chief-arrested