Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro announced Wednesday the arrest of one of the suspects in the murder of former beauty queen and ex-Miss Venezuela Monica Spear and the identification of the rest of the suspects, whom he promised to "seek with the law in hand."
"We've already captured one of those involved. We've identified those involved in this (double) homicide and we're going to seek them with the law in hand," said Maduro at a meeting with governors and mayors called after the shock and consternation caused by Spear's death Monday night at the hands of armed criminals on a highway in the central state of Carabobo.
The president said the investigation of the case "will be thorough" after the murders rocked Venezuelan society and renewed the public's traditional concern over the high crime rate.
Interior Minister Miguel Rodriguez said Tuesday that five suspects had been arrested on suspicion of being part of the criminal gang responsible for the murders.
Spear and her husband were shot to death by gunmen after their vehicle suffered mechanical problems on a highway and they pulled over to await help.
Wounded in the incident was the couple's 5-year-old daughter.
The government said that Venezuela, with a population of about 29 million, in 2013 had 39 murders per 100,000 residents, but the non-governmental organization Venezolano de Violencia set the rate at 79 per 100,000. EFE