The parish faithful said that days before, the priest had expressed his concern over threats received because of his denunciations of the gangs engaged in selling drugs.
One of Fr. Viroche's actions was to say a Mass in November 2015 calling for a people free of drugs and thefts in Delfín Gallo, a rural settlement just 10 miles southeast of San Miguel de Tucumán.
Also, because of the repeated thefts in the last year, the priest decided to put a fence around the church and the blamed criminal activity on the growing drug trafficking which he said corrupts teens and young adults in the area.
The Archdiocese of Tucumán issued a statement lamenting Fr. Viroche's death and adding: "We expect prompt clarification of the facts and trust in the action of the justice system, with which of course we will be cooperating in everything that depends on us."
The Tucumán archdiocese added that they join with the priest's family and the parish faithful in "their grief over the loss of their pastor" and commended Fr. Viroche "to the mercy of God, that the Lord may welcome him into heaven."