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An American citizen was arrested Sunday evening during a Tijuana police operation in the colonia Francisco Villa. The man was found with a handgun that was reported stolen from the Tijuana Municipal Police on February 22. A 17-year-old male was also arrested with the American; his citizenship was not made public.

Matthew Mercado, the American, is a 40-year-old native of California. No United States federal or California state criminal records were immediately found for the suspect. The manner in which the gun was stolen has not been released either.

Gun regulation in Mexico, although not effective, has strict laws forbidding the owning or carrying of concealed weapons and rifles. A few exceptions, such as hunting weapons or carrying small registered arms, do exist. Only one legal gun store exists in Mexico, and it is run by the Mexican Army. The Mexican government last year reported over 9000 police guns were stolen or missing.

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