London, Dec 24 (ANI): A Mexican beauty queen and international pageant winner has become embroiled in a scandal for her possible involvement with violent drugs gangs.
Laura Zuniga, the 23-year-old Miss Sinaloa, has been detained by police along with alleged drug traffickers who had assault rifles and cash.
She was held with seven men at a military checkpoint in Guadalajara.
"She is the beauty queen of Sinaloa and was aboard an SUV with the weapons and several of the men," the Telegraph quoted a police spokesman from western Jalisco state, home to Guadalajara, as saying.
"No one expected this young woman to be aboard, along with more than a dozen cell phones, lots of cash, pistols, bullets and two rifles," he added.
Zuniga won the Miss Sinaloa title in July and was scheduled to represent Mexico in the Miss International 2009 pageant next year in Asia. S
She was named "Queen of Hispanic America 2008" in a contest in Bolivia.
Police said one of the men arrested with her has links to the leadership of the Juarez cartel, which operates lucrative smuggling routes into the United States.
"This young woman was the gentleman's girlfriend," Jalisco state Security Minister Luis Carlos Najera said in a radio interview. (ANI)