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Category Archives: Mexican Drug Cartels

Ten men with links with Mexican cartels and Los Zetas and the FARC, captured

Map of Mexican drug cartels based on a May 201...

Map of Mexican drug cartels based on a May 2010 Stratfor report. “Free Article for Non-Members”. Stratfor. 2010-05-17 . . Retrieved 2011-03-28 . Tijuana Cartel, red; Beltrán Leyva Cartel, orange; Sinaloa Cartel, yellow; Juárez Cartel, brown; La Familia Michoacana, green; Gulf Cartel, cyan; Los Zetas Cartel, blue. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Ten men reported to have links with Pacific Mexican cartels and Los Zetas and the FARC, were captured after the United States requested his extradition for crimes related to drug trafficking.

Those arrested include two policemen and John Eduarth Monk Alvarado, mayor of Milan, Department of Caquetá and 395 miles southwest of Bogota, said the director of the Technical Investigation of the Attorney General, Maritza Escobar.

“According to the investigation conducted by the Prosecutor’s Office with support from U.S. authorities, it was established that these people would be part of an international organization which exported 100 tons of cocaine a year, to Central America, United States, Spain and Australia,” the agency researcher in a statement.

The arrests took place in nine cities, including Bogota, Medellin and Cali

The report added that “it was determined that the structure would have ties to the Pacific Cartel and Los Zetas in Mexico as well as the FARC (Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia) and the criminal gang Los Urabeños“.

The arrests took place in nine cities, including Bogota, Medellin and Cali.

Five of the 10 captured belong to the same family.

The Colombian authorities have said that Colombian drug gangs supplied the drug to groups of Mexico, who are responsible for the drug across EU, but ruled that Mexican cartels have direct presence in the country.

Other arrests

The Colombian authorities have conducted other operations in which they have detected the presence of the Mexican cartels. – On January 13, 2011 was captured Julio Enrique Ayala Muñoz, one of the men close to Joaquin El Chapo Guzman in the Colombian city of Cali. Ayala, era conocido como El Cóndor. Ayala, was known as the Condor.

– On January 20, 2011, Colombia’s judicial police caught Carlos Arturo Cordoba, The Claw, responsible for getting the aircraft traveling to EU.

– On October 30, 2012 was arrested Colombian drug kingpin Henry de Jesus Lopez Londoño, My Blood “, considered the largest supplier of cocaine to Los Zetas.

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Posted by on 08/24/2013 in Latin America Drug kingpins, Mexican Drug Cartels

 

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EL Chapo back in the news

Sprint Antiballistic Missile

Sprint Antiballistic Missile (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Members of “El Chapo” Guzman’s Sinaloa Cartel tried to buy high-powered weaponry, including surface-to-air missiles and anti-tank weapons, according to US government reports, suggesting that the powerful drug trafficking syndicate is seeking to make a quantum leap in its military capacity.

According to the US Justice Department, the Sinaloa Cartel, the Zetas and the Familia Michoacana all established arms trafficking networks that allowed them to import high caliber assault weapons and military equipment from the United States, reported Mexico’s El Universal.

In three of the 25 cases detailed, which span from 2007 to 2012, undercover agents with the US Alcohol, Firearms and Tobacco (ATF) bureau managed to prevent Sinaloa Cartel operatives from obtaining weapons including Stinger surface-to-air missiles and various anti-tank weapons.

Over the time period, US security forces broke up several arms trafficking cells, arresting a number of men on both sides of the border. Among the US arrests were ex-military personnel. The various trafficking cells operated out of Texas, Florida, Arizona, New Mexico and California.

One of the reasons El Chapo has managed to evade capture for so long is thanks to his small army of private security, which in 2009 consisted of 300 personal bodyguards, according to a US diplomatic cable obtained by Wikileaks.

With El Chapo believed to favor isolated hideouts, the type of high-powered weaponry mentioned in the reports would help repel security forces raids before they even came within touching distance of the infamous drug lord, while surface to air missiles would offer protection against raids carried out with helicopters.

The reports also highlight what is a broader and ongoing issue — the trafficking of arms from the United States to Mexico. The price and accessibility of arms in the United States makes it an ideal source country, not only for Mexico, but also for other crime-plagued Latin American countries, including Colombia, where there have been numerous cases showing how US-purchased weapons end up in the hands of Colombian gangs and drug trafficking organizations.

 
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Posted by on 08/12/2013 in Mexican Drug Cartels

 

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Rafael Caro Quintero, responsible for killing of DEA agent in 1985 Released

A Mexican court’s releasing of a drug lord who killed a Drug Enforcement Administration agent in the 1980s is sparking outrage this weekend among U.S. law enforcement officials. Rafael Caro Quintero, who was sentenced to 40 years in prison for ordering the 1985 killing of DEA agent Enrique Camarena, was released earlier this week by a Mexican court that overturned the conviction, saying he had been improperly tried in a federal court for state crimes.

The Justice Department said it found the court’s decision “deeply troubling.” “The Department of Justice, and especially the Drug Enforcement Administration, is extremely disappointed with this result,” the agency said in a statement. The Justice Department also said it “has continued to make clear to Mexican authorities the continued interest of the United States in securing Caro Quintero’s extradition so that he might face justice in the United States.”

The DEA said separately it “will vigorously continue its efforts to ensure Caro Quintero faces charges in the United States for the crimes he committed.” Caro Quintero still faces charges in the United States. Meanwhile, the Mexican government said Friday it was reviewing what legal moves it might take in the case, according to The Wall Street Journal. The country’s attorney general’s office said in a statement it disagrees with the immediate liberation and the court should have handed over the case to the proper court for review. The office also said Caro Quintero’s charges were too serious to free him without exhausting all legal channels. In recent years, Mexico has stepped up extraditions of alleged drug kingpins to the U.S., usually after they have served some prison time in Mexico, according to The Journal.

The whereabouts of the 61-year-old Quintero is unclear, after serving 20 years and walking out of prison. The Association of Former Federal Narcotics Agents in the United States said it was “outraged” by Caro Quintero’s early release and blamed corruption within Mexico’s justice system. “The release of this violent butcher is but another example of how good faith efforts by the U.S. to work with the Mexican government can be frustrated by those powerful dark forces that work in the shadows of the Mexican ‘justice’ system,” the organization said in a statement.

Mexican authorities did not release the full decision explaining the reasoning of the three-judge panel, in the western state of Jalisco, in setting free Caro Quintero. But some experts said the ruling may have been part of a broader push to rebalance the Mexican legal system in favor of defendants’ rights, from both law-enforcement officials and the independent judicial system.

Mexico’s Supreme Court has issued several recent rulings overturning cases while saying due process wasn’t followed. However, Mexican and current and former U.S. officials alike expressed deep skepticism that correct procedures were followed in the decision to free Caro Quintero. Caro Quintero was a founding member of one of Mexico’s earliest and biggest drug cartels. He helped establish a powerful cartel based in the northwestern Mexican state of Sinaloa that later split into some of Mexico’s largest cartels, including the Sinaloa and Juarez cartels. But he wasn’t tried for drug trafficking, a federal crime in Mexico. Instead, Mexican federal prosecutors, under intense pressure from the United States, put together a case against him for Camarena’s kidnapping and killing, both state crimes. Mexican courts and prosecutors have long tolerated illicit evidence such as forced confessions and have frequently based cases on questionable testimony or hearsay.

Such practices have been banned by recent judicial reforms, but past cases, including those against high-level drug traffickers, are often rife with such legal violations. Mexico’s relations with Washington were badly damaged when Caro Quintero ordered Camarena kidnapped, tortured and killed, purportedly because he was angry about a raid on a 220-acre (89-hectare) marijuana plantation in central Mexico named “Rancho Bufalo” – Buffalo Ranch – that was seized by Mexican authorities at Camarena’s insistence.

Camarena was kidnapped in Guadalajara, a major drug trafficking center at the time. His body and that of his Mexican pilot, both showing signs of torture, were found a month later, buried in shallow graves. Caro Quintero was eventually hunted down in Costa Rica.

 
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Posted by on 08/11/2013 in Crime!, Mexican Drug Cartels

 

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Nine dead in firefight with armed civilians in Reynosa

Nine dead fighting with military and armed civilians in Reynosa

Nine dead fighting with military and armed civilians in Reynosa

CIUDAD VICTORIA,  June. 26-In the towns of Reynosa and San Fernando, Tamaulipas, in the last 24 hours there were clashes between the military’s personnel and armed civilians, resulting in nine people dead, one of them a military element.

 This Wednesday jointly informed the Attorney General and the Secretariat of Public Security of the State, in the city of Reynosa, was a first confrontation with killing three attackers and one soldier dead and seven others injured.

The confrontation began before 09:00 hours on the streets of Colonia Rodriguez and culminated Extending approximately 10:15 hours on the Boulevard of the Colony Oil Acapulco, meters Pemex facilities and facing an education center upper half.

The scene was a pick-up shielded craft, Chevrolet Silverado 2008 model four-door white and the Texas plates.

Inside were lifeless bodies of three civilians armed and only one was identified as Cardenas Javier Antonio Lopez, 30 years old and originally from Sinaloa.

This information, according to the Public Prosecutor of the Common Jurisdiction that integrated preliminary investigation.

At that site, the National Defense Secretariat seized three rifles, 38 magazines for these guns, six grenades, striking metallic stars for wheels and trimmings.

Also injured three men were taken to the clinic Pemex, two soldiers and an employee of the parastatal.

When receiving medical attention, one of the injured soldiers died, while the second underwent surgery for back injury that pierced one of his lungs, but is reported to be stable.  The Pemex worker had only minor injury and was discharged.

As a result of the confrontation also reported five people beyond the facts with bullet injuries that are treated at the Hospital of the Mexican Social Security Institute and are out of danger.

In another violent event in San Fernando, was a confrontation between armed civilians and military personnel resulted in five men dead.

Staff of the Attorney General, in support of the National Defense Secretariat, was presented to integrate a preliminary investigation, attesting that the confrontation was recorded at 20:15 am Tuesday in the Ejido Guadalupe Victoria, compared to Rancho La Isla

At that point the undergrowth were the bodies of five attackers, all with multiple gunshot wounds.  Three of them were between 28-40 years of age, while the other two were of 16-20 years.  In their belongings were not found any documents that would identify them.

Staff of the Federal Public Prosecutor’s Office secured a Hummer H3 without license plates and five assault rifles, a grenade launcher, 28 magazines, grenades and trimmings.

The Common Public Prosecutor ordered the transfer of the bodies to the Medical Examiner for practice tests provided by law.

 
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Posted by on 06/27/2013 in Crime Watch, Mexican Drug Cartels

 

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Pena Nieto government reaching an accommodation with some cartel figures

English: Logo of Agua Prieta.

English: Logo of Agua Prieta. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The rumors of the Pena Nieto government reaching an accommodation with some cartel figures such as Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman Loera have persisted, even as the Mexican government arrests key operatives in Guzman’s network, such as Ines Coronel Barreras, Guzman’s father-in-law, who was arrested May 1 in Agua Prieta, Mexico. Indeed, on April 27, Washington Post reporter Dana Priest published a detailed article outlining how U.S. authorities were fearful that the Mexican government was restructuring its security relationship with the U.S. government so that it could more easily reach an unofficial truce with cartel leaders. Yet four days later, Coronel — a significant cartel figure — was arrested in a joint operation between the Mexicans and Americans.

Clearly, there is some confusion on the U.S. side about the approach the Pena Nieto government is taking, but conversations with both U.S. and Mexican officials reveal that these changes in Mexico‘s approach do not appear to be as drastic as some have feared. There will need to be adjustments on both sides of the border while organizational changes are underway in Mexico, but this does not mean that bilateral U.S.-Mexico cooperation will decline in the long term.

Opportunities and Challenges

Despite the violence that has wracked Mexico over the past decade, the Mexican economy is booming. Arguably, the economy would be doing even better if potential investors were not concerned about cartel violence and street crime — and if such criminal activity did not have such a significant impact on businesses operating in Mexico. 

Because of this, the Pena Nieto administration believes that it is critical to reduce the overall level of violence in the country. Essentially it wants to transform the cartel issue into a law enforcement problem, something handled by the Interior Ministry and the national police, rather than a national security problem handled by the Mexican military and the Center for Research and National Security (Mexico’s national-level intelligence agency). In many ways the Pena Nieto administration wants to follow the model of the government of Colombia, which has never been able to stop trafficking in its territory but was able to defeat the powerful Medellin and Cali cartels and relegate their successor organizations to a law enforcement problem.   

The Mexicans also believe that if they can attenuate cartel violence, they will be able to free up law enforcement forces to tackle common crime instead of focusing nearly all their resources on containing the cartel wars.   

Although the cartels have not yet been taken down to the point of being a law enforcement problem, the Pena Nieto administration wants to continue to signal this shift in approach by moving the focus of its efforts against the cartels to the Interior Ministry. Unlike former Mexican President Felipe Calderon, who was seen leading the charge against the cartels during his administration, Pena Nieto wants to maintain some distance from the struggle against the cartels (at least publicly). Pena Nieto seeks to portray the cartels as a secondary issue that does not demand his personal leadership and attention. He can then publicly focus his efforts on issues he deems critically important to Mexico’s future, like education reform, banking reform, energy reform and fostering the Mexican economy. This is the most significant difference between the Calderon and Pena Nieto administrations.

Of course it is one thing to say that the cartels have become a secondary issue, and it is quite another to make it happen. The Mexican government still faces some real challenges in reducing the threat posed by the cartels. However, it is becoming clear that the Pena Nieto administration seeks to implement a holistic approach in an attempt to address the problems at the root of the violence that in some ways is quite reminiscent of counterinsurgency policy. The Mexicans view these underlying economic, cultural and sociological problems as issues that cannot be solved with force alone.

Mexican officials in the current government say that the approach the Calderon administration took to fighting the cartels was wrong in that it sought to solve the problem of cartel violence by simply killing or arresting cartel figures. They claim that Calderon’s approach did nothing to treat the underlying causes of the violence and that the cartels were able to recruit gunmen faster than the government could kill or capture them. (In some ways this is parallel to the U.S. government’s approach in Yemen, where increases in missile strikes from unmanned aerial vehicles have increased, rather than reduced, the number of jihadists there.) In Mexico, when the cartels experienced trouble in recruiting enough gunmen, they were able to readily import them from Central America.    

However — and this is very significant — this holistic approach does not mean that the Pena Nieto administration wants to totally abandon kinetic operations against the cartels. An important pillar of any counterinsurgency campaign is providing security for the population. But rather than provoke random firefights with cartel gunmen by sending military patrols into cartel hot spots, the Pena Nieto team wants to be more targeted and intentional in its application of force. It seeks to take out the networks that hire and supply the gunmen, not just the gunmen themselves, and this will require all the tools in its counternarcotics portfolio — not only force, but also things like intelligence, financial action (to target cartel finances), public health, institution building and anti-corruption efforts. 

The theory is that by providing security, stability and economic opportunity the government can undercut the cartels’ ability to recruit youth who currently see little other options in life but to join the cartels. 

To truly succeed, especially in the most lawless areas, the Mexican government is going to have to begin to build institutions — and public trust in those institutions — from the ground up. The officials we have talked to hold Juarez up as an example they hope to follow in other locations, though they say they learned a lot of lessons in Juarez that will allow them to streamline their efforts elsewhere. Obviously, before they can begin building, they recognize that they will have to seize, consolidate and hold territory, and this is the role they envision for the newly created gendarmerie, or paramilitary police.

The gendarmerie is important to this rebuilding effort because the military is incapable of serving in an investigative law enforcement role. They are deployed to pursue active shooters and target members of the cartels, but much of the crime affecting Mexico’s citizens and companies falls outside the military’s purview. The military also has a tendency to be heavy-handed, and reports of human rights abuses are quite common. Transforming from a national security to a law enforcement approach requires the formation of an effective police force that is able to conduct community policing while pursuing car thieves, extortionists, kidnappers and street gangs in addition to cartel gunmen.

Certainly the U.S. government was very involved in the Calderon administration’s kinetic approach to the cartel problem, as shown by the very heavy collaboration between the two governments. The collaboration was so heavy, in fact, that some incoming Pena Nieto administration figures were shocked by how integrated the Americans had become. The U.S. officials who told Dana Priest they were uncomfortable with the new Mexican government’s approach to cartel violence were undoubtedly among those deeply involved in this process — perhaps so deeply involved that they could not recognize that in the big picture, their approach was failing to reduce the violence in Mexico. Indeed, from the Mexican perspective, the U.S. efforts have been focused on reducing the flow of narcotics into the United States regardless of the impact of those efforts on Mexico’s security environment.

However, as seen by the May 1 arrest of Coronel, which a Mexican official described as a classic joint operation involving the U.S Drug Enforcement Administration and Mexican Federal Police, the Mexican authorities do intend to continue to work very closely with their American counterparts. But that cooperation must occur within the new framework established for the anti-cartel efforts. That means that plans for cooperation must be presented through the Mexican Interior Ministry so that the efforts can be centrally coordinated. Much of the current peer-to-peer cooperation can continue, but within that structure.

Consolidation and Coordination

As in the United States, the law enforcement and intelligence agencies in Mexico have terrible problems with coordination and information sharing. The current administration is attempting to correct this by centralizing the anti-cartel efforts at the federal level and by creating coordination centers to oversee operations in the various regions. These regional centers will collect information at the state and regional level and send it up to the national center. However, one huge factor inhibiting information sharing in Mexico — and between the Americans and Mexicans — is the longstanding problem of corruption in the Mexican government. In the past, drug czars, senior police officials and very senior politicians have been accused of being on cartel payrolls. This makes trust critical, and lack of trust has caused some Mexican and most American agencies to restrict the sharing of intelligence to only select, trusted contacts. Centralizing coordination will interfere with this selective information flow in the short term, and it is going to take time for this new coordination effort to earn the trust of both Mexican and American agencies. There remains fear that consolidation will also centralize corruption and make it easier for the cartels to gather intelligence.

Another attempt at command control and coordination is in the Pena Nieto administration’s current efforts to implement police consolidation at the state level. While corruption has reached into all levels of the Mexican government, it is unquestionably the most pervasive at the municipal level, and in past government operations entire municipal police departments have been fired for corruption. The idea is that if all police were brought under a unified state command, called “Mando Unico” in Spanish, the police would be better screened, trained and paid and therefore the force would be more professional.

This concept of police consolidation at the state level is not a new idea; indeed, Calderon sought to do so under his administration, but it appears that Pena Nieto might have the political capital to make this happen, along with some other changes that Calderon wanted to implement but could not quite pull off. To date, Pena Nieto has had a great deal of success in garnering political support for his proposals, but the establishment of Mando Unico in each of Mexico’s 31 states may perhaps be the toughest political struggle he has faced yet. If realized, Mando Unico will be an important step — but only one step — in the long process of institution building for the police at the state level. 

Aside from the political struggles, the Mexican government still faces very real challenges on the streets as it attempts to quell violence, reassert control over lawless areas and gain the trust of the public. The holistic plan laid out by the Pena Nieto administration sounds good on paper, but it will still require a great deal of leadership by Pena Nieto and his team to bring Mexico through the challenges it faces. They will obviously need to cooperate with the United States to succeed, but it has become clear that this cooperation will need to be on Mexico’s terms and in accordance with the administration’s new, holistic approach. 

 
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Posted by on 05/16/2013 in Crime!, Mexican Drug Cartels

 

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Mexican Cartels sending trusted agents to work in USA!

Mexican drug cartels whose operatives once rarely ventured beyond the U.S. border are dispatching some of their most trusted agents to live and work deep inside the United States — an emboldened presence that experts believe is meant to tighten their grip on the world’s most lucrative narcotics market and maximize profits.

If left unchecked, authorities say, the cartels’ move into the American interior could render the syndicates harder than ever to dislodge and pave the way for them to expand into other criminal enterprises such as prostitution, kidnapping-and-extortion rackets and money laundering.

Cartel activity in the U.S. is certainly not new. Starting in the 1990s, the ruthless syndicates became the nation’s No. 1 supplier of illegal drugs, using unaffiliated middlemen to smuggle cocaine, marijuana and heroin beyond the border or even to grow pot here.

But a wide-ranging Associated Press review of federal court cases and government drug-enforcement data, plus interviews with many top law enforcement officials, indicate the groups have begun deploying agents from their inner circles to the U.S. Cartel operatives are suspected of running drug-distribution networks in at least nine non-border states, often in middle-class suburbs in the Midwest, South and Northeast.

“It’s probably the most serious threat the United States has faced from organized crime,” said Jack Riley, head of the Drug Enforcement Administration‘s Chicago office.

The cartel threat looms so large that one of Mexico’s most notorious drug kingpins — a man who has never set foot in Chicago — was recently named the city’s Public Enemy No. 1, the same notorious label once assigned to Al Capone.

The Chicago Crime Commission, a non-government agency that tracks crime trends in the region, said it considers Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman even more menacing than Capone because Guzman leads the deadly Sinaloa cartel, which supplies most of the narcotics sold in Chicago and in many cities across the U.S.

Years ago, Mexico faced the same problem — of then-nascent cartels expanding their power — “and didn’t nip the problem in the bud,” said Jack Killorin, head of an anti-trafficking program in Atlanta for the Office of National Drug Control Policy. “And see where they are now.”

Riley sounds a similar alarm: “People think, `The border’s 1,700 miles away. This isn’t our problem.’ Well, it is. These days, we operate as if Chicago is on the border.”

Border states from Texas to California have long grappled with a cartel presence. But cases involving cartel members have now emerged in the suburbs of Chicago and Atlanta, as well as Columbus, Ohio, Louisville, Ky., and rural North Carolina. Suspects have also surfaced in Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota and Pennsylvania.

Mexican drug cartels “are taking over our neighborhoods,” Pennsylvania Attorney General Kathleen Kane warned a legislative committee in February. State Police Commissioner Frank Noonan disputed her claim, saying cartels are primarily drug suppliers, not the ones trafficking drugs on the ground.

For years, cartels were more inclined to make deals in Mexico with American traffickers, who would then handle transportation to and distribution within major cities, said Art Bilek, a former organized crime investigator who is now executive vice president of the crime commission.

As their organizations grew more sophisticated, the cartels began scheming to keep more profits for themselves. So leaders sought to cut out middlemen and assume more direct control, pushing aside American traffickers, he said.

Beginning two or three years ago, authorities noticed that cartels were putting “deputies on the ground here,” Bilek said. “Chicago became such a massive market … it was critical that they had firm control.”

To help fight the syndicates, Chicago recently opened a first-of-its-kind facility at a secret location where 70 federal agents work side-by-side with police and prosecutors. Their primary focus is the point of contact between suburban-based cartel operatives and city street gangs who act as retail salesmen. That is when both sides are most vulnerable to detection, when they are most likely to meet in the open or use cellphones that can be wiretapped.

Others are skeptical about claims cartels are expanding their presence, saying law-enforcement agencies are prone to exaggerating threats to justify bigger budgets.

David Shirk, of the University of San Diego’s Trans-Border Institute, said there is a dearth of reliable intelligence that cartels are dispatching operatives from Mexico on a large scale.

“We know astonishingly little about the structure and dynamics of cartels north of the border,” Shirk said. “We need to be very cautious about the assumptions we make.”

Statistics from the DEA suggest a heightened cartel presence in more U.S. cities. In 2008, around 230 American communities reported some level of cartel presence. That number climbed to more than 1,200 in 2011, the most recent year for which information is available, though the increase is partly due to better reporting.

Dozens of federal agents and local police interviewed by the AP said they have identified cartel members or operatives using wiretapped conversations, informants or confessions. Hundreds of court documents reviewed by the AP appear to support those statements.

“This is the first time we’ve been seeing it — cartels who have their operatives actually sent here,” said Richard Pearson, a lieutenant with the Louisville Metropolitan Police Department, which arrested four alleged operatives of the Zetas cartel in November in the suburb of Okolona.

People who live on the tree-lined street where authorities seized more than 2,400 pounds of marijuana and more than $1 million in cash were shocked to learn their low-key neighbors were accused of working for one of Mexico’s most violent drug syndicates, Pearson said.

One of the best documented cases is Jose Gonzalez-Zavala, who was dispatched to the U.S. by the La Familia cartel, according to court filings.

In 2008, the former taxi driver and father of five moved into a spacious home at 1416 Brookfield Drive in a middle-class neighborhood of Joliet, southwest of Chicago. From there, court papers indicate, he oversaw wholesale shipments of cocaine in Illinois, Wisconsin and Indiana.

Wiretap transcripts reveal he called an unidentified cartel boss in Mexico almost every day, displaying the deference any midlevel executive might show to someone higher up the corporate ladder. Once he stammered as he explained that one customer would not pay a debt until after a trip.

“No,” snaps the boss. “What we need is for him to pay.”

The same cartel assigned Jorge Guadalupe Ayala-German to guard a Chicago-area stash house for $300 a week, plus a promised $35,000 lump-sum payment once he returned to Mexico after a year or two, according to court documents.

Ayala-German brought his wife and child to help give the house the appearance of an ordinary family residence. But he was arrested before he could return home and pleaded guilty to multiple trafficking charges. He will be sentenced later this year.

Socorro Hernandez-Rodriguez was convicted in 2011 of heading a massive drug operation in suburban Atlanta’s Gwinnett County. The chief prosecutor said he and his associates were high-ranking figures in the La Familia cartel — an allegation defense lawyers denied.

And at the end of February outside Columbus, Ohio, authorities arrested 34-year-old Isaac Eli Perez Neri, who allegedly told investigators he was a debt collector for the Sinaloa cartel.

An Atlanta attorney who has represented reputed cartel members says authorities sometimes overstate the threat such men pose.

“Often, you have a kid whose first time leaving Mexico is sleeping on a mattress at a stash house playing Game Boy, eating Burger King, just checking drugs or money in and out,” said Bruce Harvey. “Then he’s arrested and gets a gargantuan sentence. It’s sad.”

Because cartels accumulate houses full of cash, they run the constant risk associates will skim off the top. That points to the main reason cartels prefer their own people: Trust is hard to come by in their cutthroat world. There’s also a fear factor. Cartels can exert more control on their operatives than on middlemen, often by threatening to torture or kill loved ones back home.

Danny Porter, chief prosecutor in Gwinnett County, Ga., said he has tried to entice dozens of suspected cartel members to cooperate with American authorities. Nearly all declined. Some laughed in his face.

“They say, `We are more scared of them (the cartels) than we are of you. We talk and they’ll boil our family in acid,”‘ Porter said. “Their families are essentially hostages.”

Citing the safety of his own family, Gonzalez-Zavala declined to cooperate with authorities in exchange for years being shaved off his 40-year sentence.

In other cases, cartel brass send their own family members to the U.S.

“They’re sometimes married or related to people in the cartels,” Porter said. “They don’t hire casual labor.” So meticulous have cartels become that some even have operatives fill out job applications before being dispatched to the U.S., Riley added.

In Mexico, the cartels are known for a staggering number of killings — more than 50,000, according to one tally. Beheadings are sometimes a signature.

So far, cartels don’t appear to be directly responsible for large numbers of slayings in the United States, though the Texas Department of Public Safety reported 22 killings and five kidnappings in Texas at the hands of Mexican cartels from 2010 through mid- 2011.

Still, police worry that increased cartel activity could fuel heightened violence.

In Chicago, the police commander who oversees narcotics investigations, James O’Grady, said street-gang disputes over turf account for most of the city’s uptick in murders last year, when slayings topped 500 for the first time since 2008. Although the cartels aren’t dictating the territorial wars, they are the source of drugs.

Riley’s assessment is stark: He argues that the cartels should be seen as an underlying cause of Chicago’s disturbingly high murder rate.

“They are the puppeteers,” he said. “Maybe the shooter didn’t know and maybe the victim didn’t know that. But if you follow it down the line, the cartels are ultimately responsible.”

 
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Posted by on 04/02/2013 in Crime!, Drugs, Mexican Drug Cartels, Money Laundering

 

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Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman, is the main trafficker of methamphetamine in the Asia Pacific triangle

I guess he is still alive and well, even though major news media claimed he was killed iin Guatemala two months back!

Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman, is the main trafficker of methamphetamine in the Asia Pacific triangle-MexicoUnited States controls 80 percent of the U.S. market

Does he look worried about not being on Forbes list of the richest men?

Does he look worried about not being on Forbes list of the richest men?

The Pacific cartel leader, Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman , is the leading dealer of methamphetamines in Asia Pacific triangle-Mexico-United States controls 80 percent of the U.S. market and obtains annual revenues of approximately three billion dollars, according to a known analysis today stressed.

“This organization is a truly global company, as well as markets its products exhibit a high degree of diversification,” said researcher José Luis León in an analysis entitled “Trafficking in methamphetamine: Asia-Mexico-United States” which is part Atlas of Mexico’s Security and Defense 2012 that will be presented next week.

The author argues that markets covering the organization of “El Chapo” , the most wanted drug lord in Mexico, including North America, Europe, Asia and Australia, where traffics in marijuana, cocaine, opiates and methamphetamine.

He said that although some Mexican circles were critical of the inclusion of “El Chapo” in the list of the richest in the world by Forbes magazine, the Rand Corporation estimates suggest that this drug dealer gets “income of at least three billion per year, comparable to Netflix or Facebook. “

The analyst points out that in the 90 methamphetamine trafficking cartel was in charge of the Amezcua brothers, which was dismantled in 2004, so the Sinaloa cartel or Pacific remained the main dealer of these synthetic drugs known as “crystal “,” glass “,” cocaine of the poor “,” yaba “,” ice “or” meth “.

“It is highly addictive substances and permanent side effects,” he adds.

According to the DEA (U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency), the Sinaloa cartel in 2012 controlled 80 percent of the U.S. market after moving to small laboratories in the country.

The author claims that the cartel led by “El Chapo” imports huge quantities of precursor chemicals from China, India and Thailand, which reach the Pacific ports of Mexico or Guatemala, and processed in clandestine laboratories in the states of Michoacan, Jalisco , Sinaloa and Sonora, and then dispatched shipments to the U.S. border.

Stresses that this traffic is one of the most dynamic in the world, where land use traffic, commercial flights, fishing boats, catapults to exceed border walls, cars SUV to transport drugs in the desert, and temporary bridges armed with sandbags in the Rio Grande and Colorado, and mainly narco tunnels.

 
Comments Off on Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman, is the main trafficker of methamphetamine in the Asia Pacific triangle

Posted by on 03/30/2013 in Crime!, Mexican Drug Cartels

 

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