Tuesday, March 22, 2011

In open letter, Mexican drug lord’s family claims he is mistreated in prison


By MARK STEVENSON
Associated Press


The imprisoned "godfather" of Mexican drug trafficking is looking more like a grandfather these days, with cataracts, deafness, ulcers and a hernia, his family wrote in a rare open letter to Mexico's top police official Tuesday.

The wife and children of imprisoned drug lord Miguel Angel Felix Gallardo, 67, said in a letter to Public Safety Secretary Genaro Garcia Luna that Felix Gallardo is not getting the proper medications for his multiple ailments and is being mistreated in prison. The letter was published as an almost full-page ad in Mexico City newspapers.

"For more than three years, without any justification, prison authorities have kept him segregated, isolated and without contact with other inmates, and have prevented him from participating in any physical, sports or educational activities," according to the letter, in which the family also gave their address: in a swanky southern Mexico City neighborhood.

Historically, the families of top Mexican drug traffickers seldom, if ever, make public statements or publish their addresses, though authorities often know where they live.

By tradition, relatives are not usually targeted by law enforcement officials unless there is hard evidence they participated in the drug trade or laundered drug money, and occasional police raids on the homes or detentions of traffickers' relatives have drawn criticism and even retaliatory attacks from crime gangs.

In a rare 2004 protest, about 100 people who identified themselves as wives and relatives of drug suspects demonstrated outside the Mexican Congress to demand better conditions at the Altiplano maximum-security prison just west of Mexico City, the same facility where Felix Gallardo is being held. The protesters would not identify the inmates they were related to, however.

But Felix Gallardo's family said they were moved to publish the open letter - in which they asked for a meeting with Garcia Luna - because they claim he is being held in "inhuman" circumstances in a special lockdown section amid "unhealthy conditions, humidity, a lack of ventilation, bad odors and darkness." Arrested in 1989, he is serving a 40-year sentence on drug-trafficking, bribery and weapons convictions.

In the 1980s, Felix Gallardo commanded the Guadalajara cartel, then Mexico's most powerful gang, and what is considered a precursor of the brutal Sinaloa cartel. The gang also served as a training ground for many of today's top drug traffickers.

But lately, Felix Gallardo's biggest sin has allegedly been possessing cigarettes in his cell. Prison authorities canceled his rights to personal visits for four months starting in February as punishment, even though cigarettes are sold to inmates at the prison store, the family's letter claimed.

A spokesman from Garcia Luna's office said officials had no comment.

Felix Gallardo had been among the most flamboyant of the early drug lords in the 1970s and '80s. On one website, he appeared in old photos wearing tightly tailored shirts and bell-bottom pants. It was not clear if anyone connected to the imprisoned drug lord had operated the site, which has since been shut down.

It is hard for many Mexicans to think of Felix Gallardo as a victim; he is reputed to have punished a subordinate's alleged betrayal by killing the subordinate's children, cutting off the head of his wife, and sending the head to him in a box.

But the drug trade in his day was far less violent than the current round of cartel turf battles, which have cost more than 34,000 lives since President Felipe Calderon launched an anti-drug offensive in late 2006.

On Tuesday, prosecutors in the northwestern state of Sinaloa reported that seven men were shot to death in a town just south of the coastal city of Mazatlan. State prosecutors said a convoy of at least 10 vehicles carrying men armed with assault rifles drove into the town of El Espinal late Monday and opened fire on a group of residents who had gathered on the street to chat.

It was the second such large-scale killing in and around Mazatlan this month. On March 8, gunmen opened fire outside a nightclub in Mazatlan, killing six people.

17 comments:

  1. Let him rot in jail and hope he will burn in hell after he's dead.

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  2. what the little princess wants to live better in jail ? WHAT THE HELL ! WHO IS GIVING THE DEAD A VOICE ? THE INNOCENT WHO DIED ! NOW THEY THE DEAD WILL SUCK HIM UP TILL HE DIES AND GOES WITH HIS LOVERS ....SATAN AND HIS CARTELS !

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  3. That's what he gets for being a narco. All narco's need to die and burn in hell.

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  4. AGREED 100% with the person who wrote : ALL NARCOS NEED TO BURN AND ROT AND DIE IN HELL !

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  5. The authorities need to go to the families house and evict the lot of them. Sell off the contents of the house the cars and freeze the bank accounts of this cartel family.

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  6. It is so laughable that any family would have the gall to publish such an open later at this time. It would seriously make more sense if this letter was a massive troll job perpetrated by anti-drug groups hoping to show how unglamorous the lifestyle ultimately becomes.

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  7. I am sure his family sees him as a hero,along with hoards of peasants,and brainless young fools,it would be shocking for them to understand that most people even in Mexico get jobs work hard and truly pray that all these criminals would meracousley DIE.

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  8. Cry me a river,how else should prison be like,a 5 star hotel ??? You commited murder,drug trafficking,kidnappings,lets not forget you killed "kiki" camarena and now these are the consequences.

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  9. I would rather have this guy run the show then El Chapo, Don Mayo, Lazca, Vicentillo, El Coss etc.

    This guy was old school and many Narcos owe alot to this guy because he was the " El Padrino " EL Capo del Cartel de Guadalajar who split up his cartel and thanks to that you have the Juarez, Sinaloa and Gulf Cartel.

    Atleast when he was around the show was run different, old school guys had a different mentality that less violence is better.

    Now adays la gente movida is greedy and blood thirsty, it will all be their demise in the end you watch and see.

    I don't condone are look up to anyone but it's a necessary evil that will always exist.

    This guy was the true padrino that gave every narco after him the opportunity inclusive the biggest narco of them all Amado Carrillo Fuentes who had more wealth than all the narcos in his day.

    He deserves what he gets but those dias were different. Gente trabajaba y no eran chingalines.

    Saludos,

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  10. CRY ME A RIVER YOU EVIL DEMON MONSTER, THEY SHOULD BE HOOKING YOU UP TO ELECTRIC WIRES DAILY JUST TO WAKE YOUR NASTY ASS UP! ROT IN PRISON BASTARD AND I HOPE AND PRAY THAT THE OTHER CARTEL SCUM JOIN YOU VERY, VERY SOON...

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  11. MAYBE IF HE STOPPED SMOKING? COME ON! THIS IS THE PROBLEM WITH MEXICO MOST ACTUALLY THINK THIS LETTER HAS MERIT! JUST LOOK AT THIS PART!

    "By tradition, relatives are not usually targeted by law enforcement officials unless there is hard evidence they participated in the drug trade or laundered drug money, and occasional police raids on the homes or detentions of traffickers' relatives have drawn criticism and even retaliatory attacks from crime gangs"

    THEY ARE OUT OF THEIR MINDS ALLOWING THIS FAMILY TO LIVE ALL OF THESE YEARS IN THE SWANKY PART OF TOWN ON DRUG MONEY! IS IT ANY WONDER PEOPLE IN MEXICO SELL DRUGS? HELL SOUNDS LIKE A PRETTY GOOD GIG...

    WHAT MESSAGE DOES THAT SAY TO THE YOUTH OF MEXICO? IT TELLS THEM TO GO AHEAD AND JOIN A CARTEL AND WORK YOUR WAY UP AND IF YOU DO IT RIGHT YOU CAN LIVE OFF YOUR ILL GOTTEN MONIES IN THE SWANKY PART OF MEXICO...

    I AM SORRY BUT MEXICO SURE SEEMS TO BE ASS BACKWARDS, THEY DRY ABOUT THE BEHAVIORS THAT COME WITH THE CARTELS AND YET THEY DO NOTHING TO THE CARTEL FAMILIES... THESE PEOPLE SHOULD HAVE TO PROVE INCOME AND EVERYTHING ELSE STRIPPED FROM THEM! THAT SHOULD HAVE BEEN DONE IN 1989!

    HEY CALDERON YOU ARE SUPPOSED TO MAKE THE NARCO LIFESTYLE LOOK LIKE THE LAST THING ANYONE WOULD EVER WANT TO DO, NOT THE OTHER WAY AROUND! NO WONDER MEXICO HAS ALL THE PROBLEMS THAT THEY DO......

    THEN IT SAYS THE POLICE KNOW WHERE THESE FAMILIES LIVE BUT LEAVE THEM ALONE! WELL NO FUCKING WONDER MEXICO HAS ALL OF THE PROBLEMS WITH NARCOS...

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  12. Please people LETS NOT FORGET THIS IS THE SCUM THAT TORTURED AND KILLED "KIKI CAMARENA"... Enough said...

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  13. He should have not chosen to be a piece of shit.

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  14. To Anonymous @ March 22, 2011 8:51 PM,
    I AGREE WITH YOU 100%. Mexico needs to have the balls to make the drug lord "families" prove their income if daddy/mommy is locked up in prison or killed and if it can't be substantiated take it all and use it to fight the other filthy bastards! But keep fucking track of the monies with recordable records so some fat ass corrupt politician doesn't get it! Of course we're all dreaming if we think this will ever happen in Mexico at all! TOO damn corrupt for this!

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  15. March 22 6:00 pm you are absolutely 100% correct. Their "families" are all accessories, directly or indirectly by accepting money from their sons, husbands, dads, brothers, sisters etc. Every dime of assets should be taken and sold to help cover the cost. They should not benefit from the proceeds of crime and there is no way that they can claim they had no idea where the money was coming from.

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