Juan Carlos Casillas Castañeda, whose company Producciones Esperanza booked and managed regional Mexican artists, was shot to death as he left a wedding in Puerto Vallarta on Saturday night, according to published reports.

Casillas, who until six years ago also co-hosted the show "El Tendedero" on cable music channel Video Rola, was reportedly shot in the head by an assailant on a motorcycle who fled the scene. No arrests have been made.

Casillas, whose company booked such artists as Fidel Rueda and Colmillo
Norteño, was under investigation by federal authorities for
alleged money laundering, according to the Milenio newspaper.

Casillas’ is the latest in a string of unsolved murders to shake the regional Mexican music world. Between the murder of banda singer Valentin Elizalde in November 2006 and the end of 2007, more than 10 regional Mexican musicians were murdered —including Sergio Gomez, leader of duranguense group K-Paz de la Sierra. The following year, four members of Herederos de Sinaloa were killed in an ambush, and earlier this year, the drummer for Conjunto Atardecer was shot to death in an attack that also left four others dead.

A depressed economy, swine flu and violent attacks attributed to narcotraffickers have all affected the regional Mexican touring circuit south of the border, particularly attendance at so-called “massive” events that attract families. But while some acts have beefed up security or even canceled performances due to fears of violence, industry observers have told Billboard that most acts are reluctant to give up the touring income they earn in Mexico—particularly since attacks on artists are often believed to be the result of individual grievances.

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