Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Michoacán: Aquila Autodefensas Retake Up Arms; Government Denies It

Archive Photo

Translated by Valor for Borderland Beat

Due to recent violence and the neglect from state and federal authorities in the region, residents of the municipality of Aquila retook up arms, almost three years after the emergence of the autodefensas.

In an interview conducted by Noventa Grados Radio, the leader of the autodefensas in Aquila, Semeí Verdía Zepeda, stated that in less than a month, there have been three assassinations, two of which were tortured and burned, as well as an ambush against municipal police.

The extreme violence with which have been carried out by criminals and the lack of capacity of the municipal police to ensure the security in the municipality, have forced people to take up arms, Verdía Zepeda said.

The leader of the autodefensas said that neither the state nor the federal governments turn to take a look at the coastal region, as it is its duty to ensure the safety of the state, but also acknowledged that it is the work of the three levels of government.

Semeí Verdía said that the municipal police alone can’t handle the problem of insecurity, so that’s why the civilians will help them, because organized crime forces them to be on alert.

He also expressed the full willingness of the people to cooperate with the authority if it approaches them and asks them, but this has not happened, and instead has kept Aquila outside of security and social actions.

Michoacán Government Denies Autodefensas Retook Up Arms

At Least 12 Ambushes Against Police In Michoacán This Year: 8 Dead, 12 Wounded

By: Cecilia Sierra | Translated by Valor for Borderland Beat

Morelia, Michoacán, October 25, 2016 — There have been 12 ambushes against municipal, state, and also federal police forces so far this year in the state of Michoacán. 

In addition, the attacks on law enforcement have left eight police officers injured by gun fire.

The attacks have occurred on state highways, especially in the vicinity of remote communities of the municipalities, as has happened in the most recent events in Acahuato, Cancita and Las Yeguas, in Aguililla y Apatzingán.

There are also cases of attacks against municipal police forces from Ixtlán and Gabriel Zamora that killed two police officers; of the Director of Public Safety of Tiquicheo along the highway Mil Cumbres-Morelia; of Ziracuaretiro and San Pedro Barajas in La Huacana; where a federal highway police officer died and left another one severely injured.

In addition to these violent acts, is the ambush suffered by the mayor of Pungarabato, Ambrosio Soto Duarte, that took the life of the mayor and his driver, and also left two police officers injured along the highway San Lucas-Ciudad Altamirano.

California's quiet bid for Recreational Marijuana legalization

by Chivis Martinez for Borderland Beat

California’s 2016 marijuana ballot initiative hasn’t generated much noise in the media, and that goes for inside California itself.  But there should be interest because the issue goes far beyond giving the legal right to citizens over the age of 21 to smoke pot recreationally.


In 1996, California became the ground breaking state as the first state to legalize marijuana for medical purposes, pursuant to California proposition 215.   The initiative did not affect federal laws.

According to Gallup, in 1996 73% of United States citizens still opposed any legalization of marijuana, or 27% supporting legalization, when the question was asked, “Do you think marijuana should become legal?”

Today, in 2016, among U.S. voters,  the percentage of support has climbed to approximately 62% when averaging polls.

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

San Diego: Sinaloa trafficker Victor Emilio Cazares Gastelum sentenced to 15 years

Victor Emilio Cazares Gasteluem sentenced

It's taken almost a decade for Cazares, the elusive trafficker, who owned large homes in Culiacan, including one with a waterpark, to be humbled in front of a US District Judge.  In 2007, Cazares, along with dozens of others was indicted in Operation Inland Emperor, which targeted several large scale Sinaloa based trafficking networks.  The operation yielded 402 arrests, 45 million in cash, and ton quantities of cocaine, meth, heroin, and marijuana.  

Cazares, working with a transportation cell he organized in Mexicali, imported thousands of kilos of cocaine into the US, supplying distributors across the country.  Drug shipments were flown by private plane, semi truck, and personal vehicles.  After the indictment, he was seen in Culiacan, with a dozen bodyguards, and Mexican authorities wouldn't arrest him, as the US counterparts watched in frustration. 

Sometime later, Cazares, rumored to be in debt to Ismael Zambada for lost cocaine shipments, and suspected of cooperating with US authorities, fled Sinaloa.  His homes were maintained in his absence.  He was finally arrested in Guadalajara in 2012, having changed his appearance substantially. He was extradited this year. 

'El Chapo' Guzman's health worsening after extradition setback, lawyer says

Posted by Chuck B Almada, Republished from a Fox New Latino article
October 23, 2016

Ciudad Juarez –  Following a major legal setback in their battle to avoid notorious Mexican drug lordUnited States.

Joaquin "El Chapo" (Shorty) Guzman's extradition, his defense attorneys appear to be laying the groundwork for a possible argument that he is unfit to stand trial in the

 Guzman is in somewhat better spirits than a few months ago because his wife, Emma Coronel, visited him last week, but he is concerned about his mental health because his head hurts and he is experiencing memory loss, Silvia Delgado, his attorney in the northern border city of Ciudad Juarez, told EFE Friday. The imprisoned Sinaloa cartel chief's short-term memory is increasingly diminished, and in the prison where he is confined in Ciudad Juarez officials are only giving him one-fourth of the anxiolytic medication doctors have prescribed, Delgado said.

"He put a lot of emphasis on his health. He says he wouldn't make an attempt on his own life for the sake of his two (young) daughters, but he urged us to help him with his health," she said after visiting the prison where he has been held since May.

She said she could not say that Guzman "is confident he won't be extradited soon, but he's at ease with the work we're doing as his legal representatives," Delgado added.

Andres Granados, one of the leaders of Guzman's defense team, told EFE that his client could die as soon as December if he continues to be mistreated inside the prison.

Monday, October 24, 2016

Guerrero: Shootout Between Community Police Groups Leaves 5 Dead

By: Vania Pigeonutt | Translated by Valor for Borderland Beat

Five members of the Citizen Security and Justice System (SSyJC) of the Union of Peoples and Organizations of the State of Guerrero (UPOEG) were killed, three more were wounded and one was reported as missing after a shootout “clash” with members of the United Front for the Security and Development of the State of Guerrero (FUSDEG) in the community of Tlayolapa, Juan R Escudero.

The Attorney General of Guerrero, Xavier Olea Peláez, confirmed that “there was a confrontation between two community police groups.  My staff (belonging to the public prosecutor’s office) are already carrying out the proceedings at the location (Tlayolapa, 40 minutes away from the municipal seat of Juan R. Escudero).”

Although Olea stated that he had no confirmation about the casualties, Bruno Plácido Valerio, leader of the UPOEG, said via telephone that without giving details about the events, he confirmed that five police members of his organization died and one is missing.

In addition, there are three wounded that are receiving care in the basic hospital of Xalpatláhuac, located on the Costa Chica region of Guerrero, 30 minutes from Juan R. Escudero, where the UPOEG maintains their base of operations and where there is presence of FUSDEG in some parts of the communities.

Members of the public ministry, federal and state police, and members of the state ministerial police (PME) arrived at the scene.

PGR Detains Suspects in the Sinaloa Military Ambush

Translated by Yaqui for Borderland Beat  From  Zeta Oct 21, 2016

The Attorney General's Office (PGR) presented details of the investigation that continues after the ambush of a military convoy early on Sept.30 in Culiacan, Sinaloa and say that they have already detained several members of the criminal group that is responsible.

Gustavo Romulo Salas Chavez, head of the Deputy Attorney Specialized Investigation Of Organized Crime (SEIDO) reported that research during the investigation has helped identify the masterminds and perpetrators of the aggression and the motive behind it.

However, Salas Chavez has not confirmed that the Sinaloa Cartel is the group responsible as the military authorities have signaled in the past weeks.

The head of SEIDO said that a group of gunmen attacked the Army convoy to achieve the rescue of "El Kevin" alias "El 2000", who is known as an alleged member of the Sinaloa Cartel.

How one drug cartel banked its cash in New York City

Posted by DD Republished from ABC News

 By Tom Hays, Associated Press
In this August 2013 surveillance photo provided by the Drug Enforcement Administration, Francisco Salgado and his sister Alejandra walk on New York’s Third Avenue in midtown Manhattan where authorities say they made multiple cash deposits at banks within a few blocks of each other as part of a Mexican cartel money-laundering scheme. Authorities say the pair entered seven different banks making cash deposits of just under $10,000, all from piles of drug money they were carrying in designer purses and shopping bags. (DEA via AP) Less

In the photos, Alejandra Salgado and her little brother Francisco look like ordinary tourists strolling the streets of midtown Manhattan. He carries a shopping bag. She wears a white dress, a necklace and a leather tote slung over one shoulder.

But the outings were hardly innocent.

Over two hours, federal agents snapped pictures as the pair visited seven banks, stopping at each one to make cash deposits of just under $10,000 — all from piles of drug money stashed in their bags.

Prosecutors say the flurry of modest deposits was one of the many schemes hatched by Mexican crime cartels trying to bring billions of dollars in drug proceeds back from the United States without attracting scrutiny from banking regulators.

Sunday, October 23, 2016

In six days "El Mono " sold 2100 kg of coke in Europe and sent Zetas 75M USD

Translated  by Yaqui for Borderland Beat  translated  From Zeta Oct 21, 2016

 By Carlos Alvarez

Juan Manuel Munoz Luevano, alias "El Mono", alleged European link of Los Zetas, kept documents at his home in Madrid, Spain that revealed he had transferred 2100 of kilos of cocaine and $75 million dollars, in an operation that lasted only six days between February 11 and 17, 2012.

The Spanish daily newspaper, El Pais, reported that on two computers which were seized at the home of "El Mono" contained several Excel folders detailing $59 million dollar cash deliveries packed in travel bags, suitcases, and even cardboard boxes, which were shipped to the heads of the cartel organization at various hotels in Mexico City.

According to the accounts, to which the Spanish newspaper had exclusive rights to, the time period referred to was between 2012 and 2013, detailing the entry of cocaine into Europe, the price paid per kilo, between 32,000 and 34,000 Euros, its conversion to US Dollars and the gradual delivery of money collected by Los Zetas in Mexico.

Iguala Massacre: After 2 years, police chief Iguala

"Javier" Guest Reporter

CNS México, (National Security Agency) announced the arrest of former police chief of Iguala.  Felipe Flores was the police chief at the time of the Iguala Massacre in September 2014 that resulted in the killing of 6 people at the scene of the massacre and the kidnapping of 43 students 

The massacre gained global attention and outrage.  The students have never been found nor their remains.

The former police chief is charged with kidnapping and collusion with organized crime.

The arrest was conducted by the federal police and the agency CISEN, as he exited the Iguala home of his wife.  He was known to be a frequent visitor at the home, yet it took two years for the capture.

Saturday, October 22, 2016

Tijuana: PEP stash house raid reveals arsenal and 122 kilos of crystal

PEP raid stash house 

In the latest in a series operations by the PEP (State Preventative Police) 122 kilos of crystal and an arsenal of weapons were found in a stash house, in Colonia La Cienega, La Mesa.  This comes just days after the PEP recovered 16.5 kilos of cocaine in an arrest, a crystal laborotio, and another 16 kilos of crystal in the last 24 hours.

In addition elements of the Army, and the PEP were involved in finding a narco tunnel, near the Tijuana airport on Thursday.  The PEP has been at the forefront of most of the latest hits to criminal groups in Tijuana, mostly involving CJNG.  Their tactics, outside activities, and motivations have been questioned.  

This latest seizure comes after a citizen complaint, (which is how many of these alleged seizures begin), the complaint detailed a man moving packages out of a vehicle, and into a store.  Elements of SEDENA and the PEP arrested one person at the scene, and seized 42 plastic bags containing 122 kilos of crystal, as well as boxes containing more crystal and marijuana.  

Friday, October 21, 2016

A Short History of Mexican Drug Cartels

Posted by Chuck B Almada, Republished from a San Diego Union-Tribune article
Written by Kristina Davis October 21, 2016
A gun decorated with gold belonging to Mexican drug lord of the Gulf Cartel, Osiel Cardenas Guillen, is displayed in the Drugs Museum at the headquarters of the Ministry of Defense in Mexico City.
 Contraband has been flowing across the Mexico border into the U.S. for the past century, beginning with alcohol during Prohibition and moving onto drugs, namely marijuana and later cocaine.

The birth of Mexico’s major cartel can be traced to Miguel Ángel Félix Gallardo, nicknamed “The Godfather,” who in the 1980s became the country’s liaison with Colombian cocaine trafficker Pablo Escobar of the infamous Medellín cartel.

Gallardo went increasingly underground after the arrest of his cartel’s co-founder, Rafael Caro Quintero, for the murder of U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration Agent Enrique Camarena in 1985, and the drug lord later held a summit among Mexico’s larger drug traffickers. The meeting divided up Mexico into “plazas” — or regions — to be controlled by various drug-trafficking organizations.

The agreement solidified major players in the trade, including the Sinaloa Federation and the Arellano Félix brothers of Tijuana.

CJNG rules Guanajuato **WITH VIDEO***

Translated by Chuck B Almada Borderland Beat from a Union Guanajuato article

El Cartel Jalisco Nueva Generacion (CJNG) is the only criminal organization operating within the state of Guanajuato

This is according to information contained in a PGR (Attorney General’s Office) report which was Veracruz.

 made available through a freedom of information act request. The PGR reported that Guanajuato is one of 8 states in which CJNG has a presence. According to PGR, the criminal organization headed by Nemesio Oseguera Cervantes AKA El Mencho has a presence in Jalisco, Colima, Michoacan, Guanjuato, Nayarit, Guerrero, Moreles, and

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Chapo's Extradition Appeal Denied

Posted by Chuck B Almada, Republished from a BBC article
October 20, 2016

A Mexican judge has rejected an appeal by drug lord Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman against his extradition to the US.

The foreign ministry approved the extradition in May but Guzman's lawyers have been fighting the decision in a district court. They say they will now take the case to a higher court.

The head of the Sinaloa Drug Cartel was recaptured in January after escaping for a second time from a maximum security prison. Mexico has said it expects to extradite Guzman to the US by February.
He faces multiple charges in the US, including drug trafficking and murder.

In a statement, the Mexican attorney general's office said the federal judge had "decided to reject the protection" sought by Guzman.

Andres Granados, one of Guzman's lawyers, said he would seek a Supreme Court hearing and might take the case to the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights.