Chemistry student murdered by cartel after ‘refusing to cook meth for narcos’

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A chemistry student has been murdered by a Mexican cartel for reportedly "refusing to cook drugs for them".

Juan Manuel Delgado Cárdenas was gunned down in his family's home in the Tijuana neighbourhood of El Florida.

He is a clinical laboratory employee and student at the Autonomous University of Baja California (UABC), where he studied pharmaceutical chemistry and biology.

Mr Delgado was only a few months away from graduating from the university when he was murdered on April 30.

Two of the victim's siblings and two of his friends were wounded in the attack, which was allegedly carried out by three men. There have not yet been any arrests.

Authorities in Mexico believe he was killed because he refused to use his chemistry knowledge to cook drugs such as methamphetamine for the narcos, the news website Zeta Tijuana reports.

The murder has shocked Mr Delgado's fellow students, with many demanding that university authorities help to protect them.

They are not the only students to be murdered recently, among them Paulina Michelle Casillas Martínez, a whose burnt body was found last week with that of her boyfriend, Humberto Mejía Sandoval, in a shallow grave.

One said at a protest: "We don't want to live with this fear. What happened to Juan Manuel Delgado Cárdenas happened at his home.

"It's ugly that you're not even safe in your own home. I don't want to be studying today and appear in the news tomorrow because I was found in a hidden grave."

Another student said that news of his death was even more shocking because it happened on Children's Day, a day where children are celebrated annually, and it was witnessed by his younger brother.

The student said: "How could you imagine that at a time of celebration, (criminals) would come and take (the life) of a person so close to you."

A third said: "It makes me sad and angry.

"We’re students. We want to prepare ourselves to have a better future, to make a better future for Mexico, and knowing that they’re stealing our dreams makes us angry."

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