The front of a supermarket that belongs to the paternal family of Antonela Roccuzzo, the wife of soccer star Lionel Messi, was shot this morning in the Santa Fe city of Rosario by criminals who fired 14 shots and also left an intimidating note for the captain of the world champion Argentine team in Qatar, reported judicial and police sources.
The event, which had great repercussions throughout the country and many journalistic media around the world covered the news, provoked a strong political reaction from President Alberto Fernández, who said at noon from La Poma, in Salta, that “the problem of violence and organized crime is very serious” in Rosario and considered that “a lot is being done but something more will have to be done” to combat it.
“Today I woke up with ugly news in Rosario where a supermarket had been shot. I immediately contacted the mayor (Pablo Javkin) and the chief of staff (Agustín Rossi) and told him ‘let’s get going now’, because we are doing a lot but something else will have to be done,” the president said during an act.
While the Santa Fe government described the armed attack as “narco-terrorism”, the Minister of National Security, Aníbal Fernández, maintained that it is an event “typical of those that have taken place in Rosario for more than 20 years.”
“The drug traffickers have won, they have been doing what they are doing for 20 years, but we are willing to reverse it, that is why we are with personnel from the four forces working in the place, because we are convinced that it is the way,” added the minister.
The shooting occurred minutes before 3 this morning in the place called “Unico”, located at 2500 Lavalle de Rosario street and owned by Antonela Roccuzzo’s father, where at least 14 shots were fired and a message was found saying : “Messi we are waiting for you. Javkin is a narco, he will not take care of you”, in reference to the local mayor.
The note was written on the back of a piece of a bag of coal and next to some of the bullet casings that were scattered at the scene.
Judicial sources indicated that, according to the first evidence collected, the perpetrators of the attack were two people, so far unidentified, who were traveling aboard a motorcycle, whose characteristics are being preserved for the investigation.
According to the same sources, when the criminals stopped their march, one of them got out and fired a firearm towards the front of the place, before fleeing.
The prosecutor’s office reported that “14 impacts were found in front of the business premises” and “12 pods were collected from the place”, while the handwritten note addressed to Messi was sent to the expert as well as the ballistic material.
The mayor Javkin himself approached the attacked supermarket and assured the press: “I have no weapons, I have no one to take care of me, I walk through the city like any other neighbor. They are not going to run me with this. It is very clear that It’s very easy for any band to generate this fact, it’s nonsense to do it”.
“The hypothesis is the gangs and those who have to take care of the gangs. I suspect everyone, let them show me who it was. I’m talking about all those who have to take care of us, those who have weapons to take care of us and those who can do criminal intelligence,” added the community chief.
In this sense, the mayor of Rosario hinted at a connection between the attack against the Roccuzzos and a meeting he held last night with those responsible for the forces assigned to take care of the city.
“Last night I met with the governor (Omar Perotti) and the heads of the Provincial Police, Federal Police, Airport Security Police, Gendarmerie. This happened today,” Javkin said at a press conference.
At the same time, the Rosario president downplayed the message addressed to the Paris Saint Germain (PSG) striker, understanding that “anyone can write the note. It’s not even addressed to the supermarket, it names me because I do this that no one else does They’re not going to run me.”
Javkin asked the forces to remain alert and for the event to set a precedent, since he assured that in Rosario “there is a liberation of the zone.”
For his part, Governor Perotti met with the Santa Fe Security Minister, Claudio Brilloni, at the provincial government headquarters in Rosario.
Brilloni assured the press this morning that the attack on Messi’s wife’s supermarket “is a serious event” and maintained that up to now “there is no firm hypothesis” of who were the perpetrators of the act.
The Santa Fe Government Minister, Celia Arena, described the attack on Antonela Roccuzzo’s family business as an act of “narcoterrorism.”
“With the mafia attack on the Roccuzzo family’s business, knowing that it will be an event of global significance, they seek to instill terror in the population and unease in those of us who are in the battle against criminal violence,” he said.
“It is, neither more nor less, the definition of terrorism,” the official added.
The political minister of Perotti’s cabinet added in a post on her Twitter account that her government is making “the maximum efforts to effectively confront narco-terrorism, its causes and consequences.”
The case is being investigated by the prosecutor of the Shooting unit, Federico Rébola, who approached the scene and requested the intervention of the Criminal Investigation Agency (AIC), which was already working on the investigation together with the experts.
Prosecutor Rébola pointed out in a brief contact with the press that the attack was recorded by a video surveillance camera of a house located in front of the supermarket.
“We have the filming and the cameras in our possession. We are gathering information,” he said, adding that as he understood “there were no previous threats” to the shooting.