Reporting on the Mexican Cartel Drug War

Texas lawmakers appalled by drug-trafficking arrest of El Paso County commissioner

Monday, February 27, 2012 |


The recent arrest of an El Paso County commissioner for his involvement in what federal authorities say was a drug-distribution operation left two Texas congressmen appalled.

“This begs the question, how deeply have these drug cartels crept into our American side and into our American society,” said Rep. Francisco “Quico” Canseco, R-San Antonio. “We need to be worried about the fact that these violent drug cartels not only threaten our border, they’re already in this network of distribution.”

Federal authorities on Thursday arrested county commissioner Guillermo “Willie” Gandara Jr., 37, on drug trafficking and money laundering charges. Gandara and a co-defendant distributed more than 110 pounds of marijuana since Nov. 2010, according to a five-count indictment.

Gandara was mayor of Socorro, a small town sitting along the border, from 2004 to 2006. The area has being plagued for years by gangs associated with the Sinaloa and Juarez drug cartels. Gandara is now running for the Texas House 75th District seat.

Rep. Silvestre Reyes, D-El Paso, whose district encompasses El Paso and Socorro, expressed his disappointment with the commissioner’s alleged actions on Friday.

“These developments affirm my belief that we cannot wave the white flag of surrender to drug cartels,” Reyes said in a statement. “I will monitor this case closely as it goes through the judicial process and await the facts. All are presumed innocent until proven guilty in this country.”

Gandara is being held at the El Paso County jail without bond. He faces up to 20 years in prison and a $1 million fine per count if convicted.

The commissioner’s arrest and some recent shootouts along the border should serve as reminders to legislators that the United States is in a constant threat of violence and criminal activity by drug cartels, Canseco said in a statement released Friday. Canseco’s district encompasses almost 800 miles of the U.S.-Mexico border.

Canseco added that the only way to eradicate this cross-border violence is by assisting the Mexican government’s crack on cartels. He urged his colleagues in Washington to “remain steadfast in the United States’ commitment to help Mexico deal with this serious threat” to both nations.

The U.S. government pledged $1.5 billion in equipment and training to the Mexican government in 2008. But only slightly more than $700 million had been given to our southern neighbor by early December. Canseco said this effort, known as the Merida Initiative, must be stepped up.

“From Brownsville to San Diego, anything that happens in Mexico, we suffer it in this side (of the border) as well,” Canseco said. “Instead of turning our backs to the problems of our neighbors, we need to make sure that we give them as much help as possible.”
Houston Chron

Share it:

56 Borderland Beat Comments:

Reya said...

Was he working for Juarez or Sinaloa?

Anonymous said...

Men I will be so mad if this mother fucker happens to be Mexican.

Anonymous said...

If the feds arrested him he is toast.Upgrading Mexico would benefit everyone,so lets come up with a plan!

Anonymous said...

Public servants should get the harshest sentences of law.Sits on his ass making nice money for doin what?But its not enough.I can understand inner city dudes,they got no options.But people like this,representing the city,state,country,man it makes you sick.They should get stiffer sentencing than street kids slangin,but would they?Here is where our "great and fair justice system"comes in handy,,,if you got the money.This dude wont even get time.

Anonymous said...

They have infiltrated all levels of government on the Mexican side, even Calderon is questionable, so this small time guy should be no surprise at all. Since Calderon started his "war" they have had plenty of time to get into positions of authority, but all of them will never be discovered. It's called being naive, as most people are on the subject of drugs.

Anonymous said...

Rep Silvestre Reyes said “I will monitor this case closely as it goes through the judicial process and await the facts. All are presumed innocent until proven guilty in this country.”
Why so much interest Mr. Reyes, afraid of whom he might implicate. It's about time we as Americans wake up and acknowledges the fact that the Mexican Politian’s and law enforcement aren't the only ones on the take.

Anonymous said...

"Anonymous said...
Men I will be so mad if this mother fucker happens to be Mexican."

what does that have to do with anything? you ignorant racist... cartels will try to infiltrate as many people in government as they can regardless of ethnic backgrounds.. not just hispanic.. leave your racists comments out of this conversation.. its people like you who make matters worst...

Anonymous said...

February 27, 2012 10:11 AM ? What are you talking about dude? This guy is on this side of the border, this is in the U.S. not Mexico.

Anonymous said...

Big surprise. I don't think its possible for drug trafficking to be as huge and lucrative as it is in the US without the consent of officials here. It ain't possible. There are many, many more people on this side of the border are dirty. Its not just mexico that has a problem with corruption believe you me

Aaron Hanlin

Anonymous said...

Sorry, but if you track the money it will reach deep into washington d.c.. Gore, Clinto, Obama, ATF, DEA, DHS, DOJ, etc.etc.etc.

Anonymous said...

George Washington loved the wacky weed.

Anonymous said...

The Mexican government allowed the Cartels to grow in numbers and power by accepting bribes ..pretty much going to bed with them.... now the US government is doing the same... don't be concerned about border security, be concerned of our public officials....

Anonymous said...

February 27, 2012 11:38 AM I'm Mexican you fool, the reason I said that is because a few Mexicans are giving us a bad reputation.

Anonymous said...

"The U.S. government pledged $1.5 billion in equipment and training to the Mexican government in 2008. But only slightly more than $700 million had been given to our southern neighbor by early December. Canseco said this effort, known as the Merida Initiative, must be stepped up."

THIS DUMB!

Put that 1.5 billion into securing our border, build a BIG fence, hire more BP, LANDMINES!!!!

There is one thing that the US enjoys doing, not upsetting anyone. The US needs to grow some balls and SEAL the border so everyone has to either go through customs, dig a tunnel, or fly over. No one should be allowed to just walk across. This is insanity.

Americans safety is at risk. Mitigate the issue by effectively securing the border.

Anonymous said...

To arrest a hispanic public official in EP, the feds must have a solid case against Gandera.

The AP is reporting he spent the weekend in jail and is being held without bond. I guess they think he'll be a flight risk. I wonder if Gandera will drop a dime over 50 kilos.

"Gandara has been charged with conspiracy to possess marijuana with intent to distribute, possession with intent to distribute marijuana and three counts of maintaining property for distribution of marijuana."

What a dumbass. I can't believe he threw his political future away for 50 kilos. There must be something more to this story.

Anonymous said...

La neta, how little or nothing you know about politicians-drug lords involvement. Don’t believe me, but just check “old info” on The Laredo Bank and ties to el que manda en Tijuana.

Siskiyou_Kid said...

The fact that Gandara could face 20 years in prison for a harmless herb is sick and wrong.

Marijuana wouldn't be worth much more than tea if it were legal. Over 1 million Americans are arrested every year for simple possession of marijuana, and this is a ridiculous fact in a country that claims to be free.

The only people who support marijuana prohibition are crooked members of law enforcement, drug cartels, and people so old or ignorant, they believe "Reefer Madness" was an accurate presentation of marijuana use.

Anonymous said...

I bet Reyes and Canseco are both on the payroll of Mexican cartels themselves. No wonder they're monitoring it closely!!!!! All LE and politicians on the border are corrupt.

Anonymous said...

@ anon February 27, 2012 1:20 PM,Corruption in your country(U.S.A)is not anything new!Read about Joe Kennedy & his whiskey running days,how he got his son the presidents chair!Its sad how Americans arent aware of their own corrupt history!Have you heard of Oliver North?What about Al Capone & the vast majority of the police force in Chicago?So all of you ignorant folks who blame Mexico for the corruption in the U.S,get your head out of your rectum long enough to read & get to know your own rotten political history!!

Anonymous said...

Hey no culpen a calderon vean el narco es solo una opcion que sea convertido en un metodo de vida grasias a los politicos mexicanos nuestra politica necesita cambios y nuestra sociedad tambien y dejar deser una suciedad el ambre es cabrona y muchos dariamos la vida por el bien estar de los.nuestros y amuchos de estos les paso no estoy de acuerdo con el narco pero tampoco busquemos aun culpable no lo es calderon esto esta desde los 80s

Anonymous said...

I thought corruption only happens in mexico....this fucker will sell that ass if there is a buyer

Anonymous said...

It is very important to wipe out illegal drugs & drug dealers.
There is no way for a government to co-exist with drug traffickers.
Co-existence is a non-starter!!
They are out to take over governments and countries; same with the Taliban.
And legalising illegal drugs is also equally a no brainer.
Some people thought that the milder drugs, like marijuana can be legallised but what they don't seem to realise is that soon users will get bored with it and go for more addictive and destructive drugs.
Once hooked, they'll steal, rob and kill to satisfy their drug habit.
Would any sane person want such things to happen?
And because of the extremely lucrative profits, the drug lords will still continue to kill to maintain territory as well as covet those of others!!!
That's the reality.
So get real, very real!!!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

What about when then President Richard Nixon was fucking Cuban banker and drug trafficker Charles (Bebe) Rebozo during the Watergate scandal, and when Bill Clinton and first lady Hillary Clinton were investigated for a gigantic real estate fraud?

Anonymous said...

@ anon February 27, 2012 8:29 PM,"Some people thought that the milder drugs, like marijuana can be legallised but what they don't seem to realise is that soon users will get bored with it and go for more addictive and destructive drugs".Arent they(Drug users)doing that already?Legalizing & taxing drugs will take the profit out of it for the Cartels,just like it did with Alcohol!!And you might want to check death statistics caused by Drunk Drivers...

Anonymous said...

Yeah, dumb comment anon 7:23. You speak as these are facts. The majority of marijuana users I know, use no other drugs. And many don't drink either. Marijuana is safer than booze, narcotics, and tobacco. This isn't even debatable anymore. Look it up, check your facts, and stop spreading lies please.

Anonymous said...

Seal the BORDER? JA JAJA WHAT ABOUT CANADA? THE PORTS MAN U R STUPID FOR SUGGESTING SONETHING LIKE DAT. STOP CONSUMING SO MUCH DATS THE ONLY WAY.9 11 TERRORIST CAME FROM CANADA. WEED IS NOT THE PROBLEM IS COKE AND METH BUT AMERICANS LOVE THAT SHIT SO MUCH THEY WILL GET IT ONE WAY OR THE OTHER. C.I.A. ALSO NEEDS DAT MONEY TO INVADE VENEZUELA COKE FOR OIL.Seal the border? Wait for Canadians to get a taste. Of that money.and u will be crying to seal dat border too. Cut u r consumption that's it. 100 kilos dat ain't shit. When. Was the last time American authority caught a ton of anything if ever. Hundreds of tons make it across the border daily. Ever wonder why? Corruption has been there for years already.

Chivis said...

@kid..

You know where I stand in the legalization debate, however the laws stand against drugtrafficking and money laundering and that is what he is accused of.
Secondly, his egregious breach of fiduciary duty is something if found guilty I hope is taken into consideration when ruling on his sentence, persons of fiduciary should be held to a higher standard and punished with greater severity…no matter what country he/she is in….Paz, Chivis

@ anon
As far as the historical cases of US corruption, yes, the US is like any other country in the world, we have crime and corruption, but we also have something that Mexico and many other countries do not have; a patent system of law and order. To compare the corruption in the US to Mexico is a silly argument and could only stem from never living in the country to see what exist. Corruption permeates every facet of life in Mexico

Some good feedback here-

Anonymous said...

February 27, 2012 10:36 PM Only a marijuana user will thinks that. Look at how stupid people get when using cannabis you are calling on Anon 7:23 and Anon 7:23 doesn't exist. This is a dangerous drug, is eating up your brain cells and is making you blind.

Anonymous said...

Again, marijuana is safer than alcohol, tobacco, and cigarettes....all of which are legal. If you don't drink, smoke anything, or use pills, then I suppose you have the right to make that claim. If you even drink as much as a glass of wine with your dinner, then you have no right to say that, as this makes you an illogical thinker.

Anonymous said...

Wow you busted me on the non-existent anon 7:23. I suppose "every marijuana user will thinks that." You were just grammar checked by a stoner.....a stoner who graduated from high school, The University of Arizona, and received my Masters at Rice University. My assertions are based upon years of education. What education or independent studies do you have to support your assertions?

Anonymous said...

February 28, 2012 8:29 AM Wow you are very well educated, and according to you marijuana is safer than booze, narcotics, and tobacco and this according to you are facts. More very well educated people out there are against marijuana legalization. I didn't even finish 3rd grade because I was to far away from civilization, but the more I read about marijuana legalization the more I see that the people who want to legalize the drug are drug users or drug dealers

I haven't seen any scientific fact that says that marijuana is safer than other drugs, if it was, most likely it will be legal to be used just like coffee, cigarettes, alcohol, and many others.

You forgot to mention that when people use marijuana they use it more often than alcohol and any other drugs.

Anonymous said...

February 28, 2012 8:29 AM The good thing is that you are very well educated person, using you common sense, all you have to do, is to remove the s on thinks, and the problem will be solved.

Going back to Anon 7:23 how can we solved the problem If Anon 7:23 doesn't exist? I tell you how, don't smoke drugs before operating a keyboard.

Anonymous said...

For all u so called educated people who think legalization is a good idea,let me tell u something id rather fight da war on drugs than da war on trafficking organs, nuclear parts,viral diseases my point is once there is no profit in da drug game these cartels will switch over to something just as illegal or worse,basically these people just need to be wiped out!!! Cartels are greedy and they aint gonna care how they make their money,so for me id rather have them smuggle drugs and eventually get caught or killed than they getting into something much worse!!! Its a persons choice to use these drugs,proper home values should help with dis fight! Just say no!!

Siskiyou_Kid said...

Chivis, I'm definitely in agreement that Gandara is accused of violating the public trust and if he's guilty he should face the consequences.

I'm simply pointing out that the vast profits available to those who break the law are almost entirely due to prohibition, and at least in the case of marijuana, the laws against it cause far more societal problems than the herb itself.

I realize we're pretty much in agreement all around this issue.

Peace to you and your family.

Anonymous said...

When I say seal the border. I mean the border! North, south, east, and west.

Stop giving money to useless nations, like Mexico. Survival of the fittest. If they fall, let them!

Anonymous said...

February 28, 2012 1:16 PM MF please, when did the U.S. give Mexico money? If you are talking about the 1.5 billion on equipment and training, I will say oh wow big help. Mexico has spend 40 billion dollars on this war and we are not asking you for money.

Anonymous said...

Public officials should face a stiffer sentence than anyone else,the same holds true for crooked cops.This Gandara,if found guilty should face the stiffest possible sentence.These people are in an excellent position in our society,very enviable,and lets be honest about this.The common laboring man,who builds our city's works twice as hard for twice as less than this man will get.And this is not even mentioning the fact that he is a public official,and as such is looked to,to provide,help,diligence,honesty,integrity,an example that things can get done.This shakes the public confidence in every official.It is a gross betrayal of trust.

Anonymous said...

February 28, 2012 2:12 PM .Why don't you piss off with your pathetic,"we are not asking you for money"You need to ask someone for help,i mean you doing such a great job yourself aren't you.
The old whining again.Seriously,you really haven't got nothing to be feeling proud about.
You kill and rape your own women,you have no respect for them whatsoever,you are killing your own people in the grossest ways possible,yet you continue to whine and bleat,that the US is somehow to blame?Pathetic.

Anonymous said...

anon 2 10 go suck it!!!!!all americans take some type of drug or mind altering chemical...even the people who drink coffee get all wired...maryjane is God's gift to man..something man could use as fuel and medecine..thats why its illegal and could stay illegal for all i care..

Anonymous said...

the u.s gave mexico 1.5 billion meanwhile chapo guzman is using his 32 billion to fill u.s. streets with drugs who is winning

Anonymous said...

You are very mis informed. Do research.

Anonymous said...

And, perhaps, I also just skipped over a very minor detail. Same thing?

Anonymous said...

You do have a solid point in that the cartels will latch on to other things. But the point is what the poster below is claiming. The effort and cost in money and lives is no longer worth fighting to keep a relatively harmless drug like marijuana illegal. Im not saying legalize heroin, meth, or coke. Just stop wasting everyone's time with marijuana.
Yes...the facts show that marijuana is less harmfull than alcohol, cocaine, heroin, meth, Vicodin, Xanax, or even tobacco.

Anonymous said...

It IS a fact now, that marijuana is safer than all the drugs, alcohol, and tobacco that he mentioned. I've read these same reports.

But keep in mind, this is what they know AS OF NOW. Things can change

Anonymous said...

February 28, 2012 4:58 PM We do appreciate the help of the United States and I have never blamed the U.S. for this violence. I blame greed on my Mexican people. About raping women, have you seen how many people got raped in your country? 106,590 rapes were committed on 2011. About killing our own people, as long as the criminals are the ones who get killed I'm OK with that. Believe me less than 10% were innocent people. You people had more than 16,000 murders in 2011 and you are not at war with well armed and well financed criminals.

Anonymous said...

This is for all of you on this forum that criticize my Country (Mexico) & believe that every murder victim was innocent.Keep your mouth shut & let people "think" you are an idiot,once you open it,you have removed all doubts!!The vast majority of the kidnapped,tortured,beheaded & disappeared are not innocent.Many times they are thieves,snitches,rapists,criminals involved in something that they know is a dead end!How do you treat your Snitches,child-molesters & rapists?I'll tell you how...you,the Citizens of the good 'ol U.S. protect & pamper them in "Special" prisons!Innocent?How about all of those High School shootings?Now "THOSE" are innocent victims!

Anonymous said...

Agree 100 percent!!

Anonymous said...

@February 28, 2012 10:11 PM .I guarantee that you are in the US.So you talkin out your a-hole son.
The My Country,angle is not valid when you have abandoned it,and now live in a safer country with more opportunities.And now you criticize the US.That is the most pathetic argument,the i claim Mexico,but you don't even live there,its pathetic off any expatriate of any country.If they love"My country"so much,whats stopping you going back?You claim Mexico,yet live in the US?Who is the hypocrite?

Anonymous said...

Ladies & Gentlemen of this forum anon February 29, 2012 10:29 AM has proven my case for me!Keep your mouth shut & let them think you are an idiot...if you open it you will surely remove any & all doubts!This character claims I live safely in his country(U.S.A.)No Jethro,"I" live safely in my own country "MEJICO"!Perhaps because I am fluent in "YOUR" language you assume I am in American soil?What a moron!If you really believe your country is safe then you are the pathetic one.Your schools & post offices are shooting ranges,Still consider the U.S. safe?O.K,how about 911?What about Oklahoma?Need I say more?

Anonymous said...

Your schools & post offices are shooting ranges,Still consider the U.S. safe?O.K,how about 911?What about Oklahoma?Need I say more?
February 29, 2012 10:49 PM...yeah,ALL INNOCENT VICTIMS!

Anonymous said...

Lets not be disloyal to da great country dat gave every immigrant da chance for a better life, the good ole usa!!! Im mexican and if it came down to choosing loyalties id have to choose usa, becuz our homeland is ruined by a governmental system dats corrupt and keeps da down man down!! The usa is not perfect by no means but it sure is better organized than our homeland of mexico!!!

Anonymous said...

@ anon March 1, 2012 3:57 PM,I would never betray my country "Mexico",no matter how much more worse it gets down here!You're the type to jump ship when the going gets tough!You Sir,are a coward that would betray anything & anyone.The one thing people like you dont realize is that no-matter how American you think you are,the White Man will never see you as his equal!

Anonymous said...

Th e coward and the hypocrite is u,by blamin the white man for trying to keep us mexicans down!!! Why bite the hand dat feeds u, ever heard dat and if mexico cares so much about its people why dsnt it fix its economy, why dsnt it capture its drug barons why dsnt it capture all who have killed 50000 plus mexican citizens, why i ask u smart guy!! So dnt give me dat bullshit about the white man u starting to sound like da blacks!!! Im proud to be mexican but ashamed of what my country has become and done to its honest citizens!!! No sir the usa has givin me and my family the opportunity to prosper an opportunity i wouldve not had in mexico!!!

Anonymous said...

@ anon March 2, 2012 5:03 AM,First of all the White Man dont feed me!You ask,why Mexico doesnt capture its drug Barons?What the Fuck for?Oh,wait,the U.S. has the catch & release program.Dont you know its o.k to deal drugs?Because once they get arrested & extradited your new country(the U.S.) will make a deal with them & allow them to keep some of their ill gotten earnings & assign a couple of U.S. Marshalls to protect them!I hope you're around when the U.S. collapses,I would love to see where you're going to run to then!!Remember,every empire comes to an end,the U.S. is no different!!

Anonymous said...

U mustve been deported for messing up in da usa, becuz ur english is pretty good,and all dat bullshit ur saying about da usa letting go of criminals is bullshit, do ur freaking research right smart guy,cuz u dnt know wat the hell ur talking about and if being mediocre is ur thing,well good for u but every immigrant dat comes to usa has more expections!!!! I can give u a list of millionaire criminals that are still in jail so like i said do ur research right and then talk smart guy!!!!

Anonymous said...

@March 5, 2012 1:30 PM,Well you are right in one perspective,my English is decent,but no,I wasnt deported!Dont assume!As for the U.S. not releasing criminals that cooperate with the Justice Department?You are dead fucking wrong,it happens every day in the U.S.One case is the famous comedian Tim Allen,he snitched for a lighter sentence!How about Sammy the Bull Gravano?Several murders under his belt & he was given a light sentence,released & went back to a life of crime!And there is countless cases like his that the public isnt aware of.So keep your mouth shut & let people think you are an idiot,because you just opened it & removed any & all doubts of your ignorance & lack of knowledge!!

Post a Comment

Comments are moderated, refer to policy for more information.
Envía fotos, vídeos, notas, enlaces o información
Todo 100% Anónimo;

borderlandbeat@gmail.com