I have heard the following sentence in the Narcos TV series:

Será que lo mataron de las Fuerzas Especiales o qué?

Context: a troop of Colombian soldiers is looking for Pablo Escobar in the jungle after his escape from his prison named La Catedral and them one of the soldiers ask the above question to another soldier.

I was expecting to hear "Será que lo mataron los de las Fuerzas Especiales" or "Será que los de las Fuerzas Especiales lo mataron". Is the sentence still correct without the pronoun "los" ?

1 Answer 1


A prepositional phrase starting with "de" can be used to refer to the origin of some indeterminate person or people involved in an action. Actually, the phrase functions as an adverbial of place that is semantically related to an impersonal subject "ellos":

  • Te vinieron a ver de la escuela. (Te vino a ver alguien de la escuela.)

  • Llaman de la fiscalía. (Llama alguien de la fiscalía.)

  • Traen esto de la oficina. (Alguien de la oficina trae esto.)

  • Envían esto del trabajo. (Alguien del trabajo envía esto.)

I think the sentence:

  • ¿Será que lo mataron de las Fuerzas Especiales?

is related to the pattern above. However, it sounds less acceptable than the other sentences and an article would be advisable as suggested by OP:

  • ¿Será que lo mataron los de las Fuerzas Especiales?

I guess that the article was avoided to make the subject less definite:

  • Lo mataron miembros de las Fuerzas Especiales -> Lo mataron de las Fuerzas Especiales.

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