Reporting on the Mexican Cartel Drug War

HPD officer shot in sweep to punish Mexico's drug cartels

Thursday, February 24, 2011 |

By SUSAN CARROLL and DANE SCHILLER
Copyright 2011 Houston Chronicle
Feb. 24, 2011, 1:28PM


A suspect reportedly was shot and a veteran Houston police officer wounded this morning as part of a nationwide sweep to punish Mexico’s drug cartels and those accused of helping them do business in the U.S.

Nainash Patel, 39, an HPD narcotics officer, was shot twice, with one bullet going through his elbow and another still lodged in his hip. Patel was taken to Memorial Hermann Hospital and is expected to have a full recovery, said HPD Police Chief Charles McClelland.

HPD spokesman Kese Smith said HPD officers executed a narcotics warrant at 207 Buckboard about 8:25 a.m. today, knocking on the door and identifying themselves as police in English and Spanish. When no one answered, he said, the officers — dressed in SWAT gear — entered the house.

A suspect came out from a back room and started shooting at the officers with a handgun, Smith said. He said officers fired back and the suspect was shot, but he would not provide details on his condition. A second suspect in the home surrendered to the officers without incident, Smith said.

Patel was acting as part of a team that included federal agents, said Carl Pike, assistant special agent in charge of special operations for the Drug Enforcement Administration. The joint federal efforts were codenamed "Operation Bombardier" in response to the slaying last week of Immigration and Customs Enforcement agent Jaime Zapata, who was driving an official vehicle in Mexico.

Raids that are continuing today in Houston and across the nation are a clear payback for the attack on Zapata and a fellow agent injured when they were ambushed by gunmen believed to work for a Mexican cartel known as the Zetas.

"We are not just going after Zetas, we are going after all cartels," Pike said. "We want all the cartels to realize this. It is the school-yard mentality — a bully situation," he continued. "The cartels have pushed — if you don’t push back, you become the victim. U.S. law enforcement is not going to become the victim."

Pike said that the raids began quietly earlier this week and would continue for about another 24 hours. He expected several hundred people would be arrested. Already, officers have seized cash, guns, drugs.

At least 144 people have been taken into custody, and $5.5 million in cash seized. That includes $1 million in the Dallas area.

Pike said further action is expected to be taken in the next few hours in Latin America.

Houston Police officers and federal agents milled around the crime scene across the street from Aldine ISD’s Kenneth D. Black elementary school this morning. The modest, single-family brick home near Buckboard Drive and Imperial Valley was blocked off with crime scene tape, and officials were releasing little information about the shooting.

"When we heard the officer was shot this morning, it gave everybody pause," Pike said. "What he did today is a true testament to what law enforcement in the United States means and why we aren’t going to be pushed around."

The chief said Patel has already expressed excitement about returning to work.

"He told the mayor and I that that’s all he ever wanted to be was a narcotics officer and he can’t wait to get back," McClelland said at the hospital this morning.

"He’s got a big smile on his face," Mayor Annise Parker, who was also at the hospital, said of Patel. "He’s going to be fine."

Patel joined HPD in February 1997, and became a narcotics officer in November 2006.

Among the federal agencies making arrests are the DEA, ICE, FBI, Secret Service and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

Reporters Dale Lezon and Zain Shauk contributed to this report

http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/chronicle/7443931.html

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45 Borderland Beat Comments:

Anonymous said...

I have a couple of honest questions about this whole sweep in the US.

How were US police agencies able to go after so many individuals with little notice? Don't these things require warrants and whatnot? If the police already had so much info, why were they not acting on it?

I can understand if they were putting things on hold to catch bigger fish, but this is a pretty big sweep.

Don't get me wrong, I'm glad to see these fools taken off the streets. I just don't see how/why we had so much info sitting around but just now were able to act on it.

Anonymous said...

WHy did they wait until now? Obviously they had the goods on these guys.

El_Regio said...

Seems like it is the same situation as the one in mexico. They seem to know where everyone is at but they never go after them. hhhmmm makes you wonder.

This was a few blocks from my job.. lol

Anonymous said...

According to fox news Houston, no dea or ice agents were present during the raid only ATF agents and Houston swat.

Anonymous said...

You don't understand??
When are people going to figure out that the whole 40 year "war on drugs" is nothing but a lie? The US government is fully corrupt also. There are too many people making too much money to stop it.

The population of the USA needs to wake up and smell the coffee. This will never end.

Anonymous said...

the bigger the gov't bureaucracy gets the more criminals they need to keep rotating them thru the system. All of us know people and places where criminal activity takes place with impunity just by going on about our regular lives, or going out on weekends. Imagine if we got paid to investigate?
Why keep hoping it will end, why keep saying we will go to mexico when things get better. They aren't going to get better.

Anonymous said...

Cuando Gortari y su socio Clinton hacian sus transas no habia ni muertos ni tanto borullo. Todo bajo el agua. Carlitos mandaba sus aviones cargados a Arkansas, escoltados por The Mexican Air Force, Clinton los recibia con The National Guard y colorin colorado. A lo mejor si seria mejor que volviera el PRI para que vuelva todo a estar por debajo de la mesa como antes. De todos modos Gortari sigue siendo el macizo!!

- El Okie-Dokie

Anonymous said...

Hey Buela, I will use your words

"They sure knew how to get [them] fast when they wanted [them]...right? If you are able then I challenge you to put the pieces together.

"I would connect the dots for you, but you are so out there uninformed why waste the time.."

"Or as many, choose to turn a blind eye. "

Like the guy on top said,"The US government is fully corrupt also. There are too many people making too much money to stop it."

And that my friend is the truth!

Anonymous said...

I highly doubt that this is a direct response to the incident. They just decided to execute it now and it is much better PR to call it a direct response.

Anonymous said...

Unbelievable your telling me they waited until now to do this smh

Anonymous said...

Asi es lo que da mas coraje es cuando estos marranos corruptos deciden darle appoyo a nada mas un solo grupo (Sinaloa) y a los demas, "TRONCO!"...Y de pasada los que sufren mas son la gente trabajadora que no tiene nada que ver con el negocio. Si va ser "Guerra" que sea pareja. Y si van a ser corruptos que no sean "HIPOCRITAS"...


777

Anonymous said...

@February 24, 2011 3:12 PM

No te hagas "guey" los unicos que sufren son los narcos que es eso de "gente trabajadora", gente trabajando para el narco jaja...

Anonymous said...

If you Americans would stop snorthing so much Cocaine and smoking so much Meth maybe the demand for all this would subsidize.

Number one consumer of drugs in the world.
" Americans "
Of all nationalities but living in America.

Submitted from the Capital of the world.

Anonymous said...

@Anon 3:55
(Para el PROFE de 3:55)


Pues se rompen las "MEDIAS" entre "NARCOS" y empiezan a (Robar, Extorcionar y Secuestrar) a LA GENTE TRABAJADORA!!!

Pendejo ni sabes de que hablas!!!!!!!

777

Anonymous said...

Very nice to see an article on BB not talking about body parts or beheadings and where no one was killed. Now if they'd just repeat today about a 1000 times it might make a small dent in the trafficking.

Anonymous said...

Its very revealing to hear the hispanic lady saying that for the last two years they had been hearing gunfire day time and worse at night.
so these citizens have been living in fear all this time. why had nothing been done? This is only one street, in one neighborhood, in one city, how many thousands of streets like these are in America? how may hundreds of cities? how many millions of citizens feel forsaken by the very persons invested with the power to serve and protect them? Where is justice?

Swanka said...

like i said the CIA/FBI have informants everywhere and i mean everywhere and i also said they like to let big gangs operate to keep smallers in check and easy to watch and get informants.

i believe it was in direct response to show the cartels how much they know. as a criminal in america i can garantee this isnt all the people they could of gotten warrants to bust. and think of how many people they know about they cant get warrants for cause lack of "evidence"

Anonymous said...

QUE ALGUIEN ME EXPLIQUEEEE!!!!!!!!
SI NO HUBIERAN ASESINADO AL AGENTE DE MIGRACION EN SAN LUIS POTOSI.TODAVIA ESTARIAN ESOS 400 NARCOS TRABAJANDO SIN QUE LOS MOLESTARAN?????
O SOLO ES EN VENGANZA PORQUE LES TUMBARON UNO?????http://www.eluniversal.com.mx/notas/747563.html

Anonymous said...

i like it how they wouldnt have acted if that agent wasn't shot dead amazing isnt it usa

Anonymous said...

The Unites States Government knows a lot!!!!!! There was a report a couple of weeks ago that showed hotspots of cellular information around the DC area, the rumor is that the government is trying to create a mega database to tract most everybody.All of the newer cell phones have built in chips that can be traced. In this day and age, if they want somebody they can get them.

Anonymous said...

@777

Este guey jaja...tu no sabes de que hablas...cuando la gente empieza a "(Robar, Extorcionar y Secuestrar) eso son delicuentes del fuero comun y no narcos.


Como tu dices "Pendejo ni sabes de que hablas!!!!!!!"

Anonymous said...

the feds have alot of patience, you can be under
investigation for years. As long as you don't commit any violant crimes. they will accumulate
cases against you, until they have you for 10 to 20 years. Using the RICO act, they can turn
even the baddest gangsters. They know alot because they have alot of snitches on the street. Big Brother is always watching, and when
they have no more use for you, they Bust You.

Anonymous said...

It's standard procedure when investigating gangs or organized crime to conduct long term investigations spanning many months and even years, build cases on many suspects, then conduct a sweeep. The police even said that many of those arrested had been undfer investigation already. If you go grab a suspect one at a time the rest will scatter and disappear.

ajulio said...

@ 6:10 pm

In the future, they are going to place chips in human beings too. They already put chips in animals.

Like I said. The United States is the biggest mafia in the world. No one can mess with them. Not even the mexican cartels. But the U.S. government is the biggest group of white collar criminals in the world. They are just as much scum as any other criminals.

Im just happy that they are sending a message to the cartels and american gangs to stay in their place....or else. Good message and about F' time!

Keep removing low-life criminals from the streets and put them in prisons where they belong and force them to make license plates for a living.

I hope the next step is that the cartels force the United States Military to go to mexico to kick some narco ass. These cartels would'nt stand a chance.

Layla2 said...

I think they were not finished with most of these investigations; and acted on the ones they could for a show of force.

I'm sure there are many others ongoing and they want to get bigger fish. These people seemed fairly petty to me. The fact that they shot at the police is what made news.

J said...

they just compromised or ended ongoing investigations to make a scene. Understandable. No big deal.


Why do they say they will question everyone arrested about what happened in San Luis Potosi? Like a guy working for Sinaloa cartel in Seattle has ANY idea what happened.

Anonymous said...

@6:57

Si tienes RAZON Los Zetas, La Linea, Cdg y todos los demas "narcos" que amas "TU" son muy amables...

Como vamos a compararlos con delicuentes comun y corrientes verdad? Perdoname por ofender a lo mas bonito de la sociedad Mexicana (Los Narcos)
Que mi diosito los cuide y nunca les falte nada...

Como le haces pa ser tan pendejo.....lolololololololol

777

Anonymous said...

I lived in a small town while going to college. My neighborhood was very ethnic-centered. I was a minority. They called it "Little Beruit" because of the shootings. Anytime the Fed's want to take someone they can. They know who, what, when, where, and why. This was done to stifle outcry over a dead agent and to show they are "working for the people". What is happening here is no different than in Mexico other than I doubt there is as much involvement with running dope among the US police as there is in Mexico. Here they get paid a decent wage and a pissload of overtime. They don't need to work for anyone else. Some do go bad and get punished. Most stay clean. Most have great credit. Then again, most will violate the bill of rights in some way or another during their careers. You have to work out the triangle of order, freedom, and and control. There will never be a balance. In 20 years the US will look like Libya. People who are so hot on the conservative side will realize they have gotten screwed by the have-alls. The liberals will be angry that there is nothing to share. Eventually there will be a moderate joining of the people and those at the top will order the police to kill Americans.

ajulio said...

they did what they did to send a message instead of just sitting back and not doing a damn thing like the mexican government does.

better than nothing. less scum on the streets.

Anonymous said...

Wow, 8:12, I'm really depressed now. I've often thought about the logical end to America as we know it. I've heard it said that the approximate duration of any great civilization is 200 years. Is that the length of time it takes to forget what it means to have no rights, to forget what it means to fight and scrape and sacrifice oneself for a better existence for all? I thank God for my country, but not so much as I fear it. There are too many rats in the cage. How can we continue down this road like lemmings to a cliff?
Or maybe everything will magically turn out well if we just trust in our leaders.
Imjustagirl

Anonymous said...

That house is a mile away from my in-laws'...

My faith in the US government just keeps receding, faster than my hairline!

Anonymous said...

...The u.s. government has to put ''on a show''... dog and pony show, if not it will them make them look bad, especially that the bad guys are on our back yard...Rumors highly susgesting that crude oil is going to rise $150-to-$200 a barrel by the end of next year.... When the shit hits the fan, the only thing standing will be gold and silver, food is already sky-rocketing, new laws getting passed to bankrupt the states, meaning no pension plans, 401 k. is nothing more than gambling,....Everybody is going to start feeling the squeeze real soon...Be smart; Buy gold and silver, while it's still availible. Countries like Russia and China are buying up all the gold and silver they can.. The new world order is approaching...It's possible that the u.s. is using the war on drugs in mexico, to distract the people here of our very own CRISIS..

Anonymous said...

This all a sham! Two weeks ago someone was randomly shot at an apt complex in my neighborhood here in Houston in an apartment parking lot at 8pm, while people are still out and about. The police had a vehicle located near the body towed away bc they "assumed" it belonged to that man. The man had been shot in the head.

The news said nothing more about that, forensics and policemen declined to make a statement.

Here in Houston, law enforcement also has their little turfs they control drug activity on, for their own profit. ..that car they towed must've been loaded, and they knew what, who, where, and how much to get rid of that person.

On another side of town, two men were also shot in the head the same day...hmmm..sounds like too much a coincidence...the media was sketchy on the details provided on both incidents.

Anonymous said...

Damn the U.S. and Mexican government are one in the same...all this shit for show. Just imagine if this agent wasn't shot and killed we would still have all these guys running loose.

Anonymous said...

@777

No seas TAN PENDEJO GUEY...lo que queria decir es si son verdaderos narcos no estarían haciendo este tipo de trabajo(Robar, Extorcionar y Secuestrar). Este negocio (narcotrafico) vale miles de millones de dólares que chingado hacen secuestrando y extorcionar a gente pobre? La gente que hacen eso son delicuentes del fuero comun...No seas mamon guey... jajajaja

Anonymous said...

@10:14 Ya se tira a leon...

777

Anonymous said...

I think that if the USA government did stop the drugs from Mexico there would be an economic meltdown of the entire US economy.

Anonymous said...

It isn't so much that 200 years is the life of a civilization passing due to forgetting freedoms. It is th costs of maintainng a hegemony that breaks the civilization. Many political scientists, myself included, consider the beginning the the end of the US hegemony to have begun at the start of the Cold War immediately following WW2. The same way there are power vacuums in the cartels, there was a vacuum after the war. The US infrastructure was untouched and Europe and most of Asia were in shambles. This allowed the US and Soviets to begin building their power because of the negative vacuum provided by the war. The problem with the former USSR was their own infrastructure took dramatic hits from he German forces and when they begin to engage in a military spending war with the US (which was untouched relatively speaking) the USSR could not sustain itself and it collapsed from within. The same thing is happening to the US at the moment. Spending is out of control and no taxes are being used to stop the downward spiral. The end will happen soon. The US is seeing the same internal problems that the USSR saw before its' collapse. The unemployment will never get better in the US. Higher oil prices will make food more scare and more expensive. Sustainability in the food sense has been given away by allowing farms to be lost. The only growing sector from this point forward should be goods and services. Very low-paying jobs that demand little to no education. My advice to the people is this. Don't laugh about working at McDonalds or as a cook in Chili's so much. Soon it will be your only source of income and if not, you will starve. This is the reality the US is facing. Those in the health-care field will probably be the last to officially go under before they lose control of it to government regulation. The US as a nation and hegemon will not expire and die. However, the US in the true sense of what platform she was built on will be no more. Personal freedoms will become non-existant. I can not say that voting will be eliminated, but if it remains, the elected officials will be from a ruling elite. They will try to make themselves look like "saviors" to the perpetual problems that have been allowed to fester and burst. We as a nation have already lost our country. We will never be able to go back from where we came. The infighting between conservatives and liberals is at an all-time high. They both want to be left standing when the last block is knocked down in order to protect their own vested self-interest. That interest being in control of the US. The people themselves are insignificant. The power is held in the ability to create and stop war. Preventing war is just as powerful as creating it. Prevention relys on another's fear of extermination. This would dictate bowing down in order to survive. I am not a religious person, but in my opinion if there is an antichrist, it is not a person but rather a country. The last country standing in the next 100 years will be the antichrist. This will be the US in my opinion. China still has to undergo her revolution with the people and that will absolutely destroy her. The US although not as strong as she once was will remain standing and the rest of the world will bow down to her. The US is what these prophecies are written about. I know the religious zealots here will now go crazy and call me all sorts of names, but I am an educated man and these are my thoughts.

Regina@matt.org said...

this serves as further evidence of the mess in Mexico and how the US needs to step in and lend a helping hand to the Mexican military.

ajulio said...

@ 10:02 am

Fascinating comment. Very true and scary. People do not want to hear about these things but we are seeing the crumbling of an economic power. I've said this before, it is already written in the books. These are all chapters being fulfilled. The book refers to the U.S. or the U.N. as the beast but the anti-christ will probably be the president of the U.S.

Anonymous said...

@Regina@matt.org
What the hell are you talking about? Did you read the story? This operation was done in the U.S. and has nothing to do within Mexico.

Anonymous said...

Why come on bb and post your comments in spanish? You add nothing to those of us that love this site but cant speak or read spanish, go post on el blog de caca..save yourself time posting here..if it makes you feel "superior" I hope this doesnt deflate your ego..its not that we dont like your language so dont go there..

Anonymous said...

There is nothing to be scared off. THE APPOINTED TIME HAS COME, IF YOU understand what's about to take place, you will understand that we are in an ending of a time span, and in the process of an beginning of new, different, world age ....For those who totally understand this current events, (ELECT),.... (AND GODS REAL TRUTH)...... it's not about FEAR;, enough though there is rampant fear currently...It's only about things and people being put in their proper place....

Anonymous said...

"the drug cartels have 'pushed'?" now we have to "push" back? The cartels "pushed" a LONG TIME AGO,

''lito'brito said...

ha ha... stupid pendejos have fucked up and shot an American cop...not smart...now its gonna be big fat assed narcos handcuffed and shackled doing the funny little walk...

and the almighty big bad asssuckers in Mexico can't do a godammed thing about it ...

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