The murder of Sabrina Durán Montero, also known as “La Ina,” a female narco influencer in Chile, has put the government on high alert. Durán Montero gained fame on TikTok by posting videos of herself dancing and talking from behind bars while serving time for drug trafficking. With over half a million followers and 11 million likes, her online presence attracted attention. However, her funeral, scheduled for Friday, October 27, is being treated as “high risk” due to concerns about disturbing the peace and attracting fans and aspiring narcos in Peñaflor, on the outskirts of Santiago.
Durán Montero, a 24-year-old convicted narca, was attacked in southwest Santiago on October 23. Assailants shot her seven times and stole her car, which was later found burned and abandoned. She was left bleeding on the road and succumbed to her injuries later that day. Santiago’s Western Metropolitan Prosecutor, Pablo Sabaj, stated that the killing was planned, and authorities are investigating the possibility of it being a revenge act by criminal rivals. Durán Montero had been released from prison in May and was serving the remaining time of her sentence under police surveillance at home.
The Chilean government is taking measures to control the growing trend of narcofunerales (narco funerals) in the country. President Gabriel Boric proposed a legal initiative to Congress earlier this year to limit such ceremonies. Narcofunerales can last for days, with streets and cemeteries sealed off, schools closed, and mourners firing guns, setting off fireworks, and detonating bombs, causing distress to residents. Reports indicate that around 1,700 narcofunerales have taken place in Chile over the past five years.
In addition to addressing narcofunerales, the government is cracking down on monuments and tombs dedicated to drug traffickers and other criminals in public spaces. President Boric expressed the intention to tear down existing tombs and monuments. The funeral of Durán Montero, who dedicated her last videos to her girlfriend Antonella Marchant, a member of the Marchant drug-trafficking clan, is expected to draw attention and pose challenges for the government’s efforts to maintain control.
The government plans to deploy special police forces to ensure vigilance and control during Durán Montero’s funeral. Earlier this year, several schools and universities were closed in anticipation of a narco funeral in a town 120 kilometers from Santiago. Interior Minister Carolina Tohá emphasized the need to prevent drug traffickers from influencing the school calendar.
The outcome of the government’s efforts to manage the situation during Durán Montero’s funeral remains to be seen. The incident highlights the ongoing struggle against drug trafficking and its associated activities in Chile.