Mexican Mafia member to go on trial for 2003 murder

Wilfredo Padilla

Jury selection is underway for an alleged member of the Mexican Mafia.

Wilfredo Padilla is accused of murdering Joann Chavez of Harlingen in 2003.

Chavez was kidnapped from the parking lot of Valle Vista Mall but her remains were found two years later at a ranch in Willacy County.

According to court observers, security is heightened inside the 107th District Court as the jury undergoes questioning by the prosecution and defense attorney.

Padilla is one of ten men accused of beating, strangling and the burying Chavez.

So far, three of the others are currently serving prison time for participating in her murder.