A suspected Beltran Leyva drug cartel boss who handled operations in the southern Mexican state of Guerrero was arrested by the Federal Police in Mexico City, the Public Safety Secretariat said Thursday.
Ramos de la Cruz was in charge of the cartel’s business in Acapulco, a port city in Guerrero.
He is a close associate of Hector Beltran Leyva, known as “El H” and considered the top leader of the criminal organization, the secretariat said.
Ramos de la Cruz was arrested along with Leobardo Ortegon Vazquez, 26, a suspected informant who was in charge of the cartel boss’s personal security, the Public Safety Secretariat said.
The two men were arrested in the Granjas Coapa section of the Federal District, thanks to “intelligence reports,” the secretariat said.
The arrests of Jose Alberto Quiroz Perez on Sept. 5 and Carlos Arturo Torres Medina a month later led to Ramos de la Cruz, who is suspected of handling “the planting and harvest of marijuana and poppies in the mountains of Guerrero state,” the secretariat said.
An AK-47 assault rifle, ammunition, cell phones, marijuana and a BMW seized from the suspects were turned over to the federal Attorney General’s Office.
The criminal organization created by brothers Arturo, Mario Alberto, Carlos, Alfredo and Hector Beltran Leyva smuggles cocaine, marijuana and heroin, and has lucrative sidelines in people trafficking, money laundering, extortion, kidnapping, contract killings and arms smuggling.
The Beltran Leyva cartel has been weakened by the killings and arrests of several of its leaders, as well as infighting.
The Beltran Leyva cartel arose as a splinter group of the Sinaloa drug cartel, Mexico’s oldest and most powerful drug trafficking organization, in 2008.
The criminal organization was led by Arturo Beltran Leyva, who died in a shootout with marines at a luxury condo in Cuernavaca, the capital of Morelos state, on Dec. 16, 2009.
Two weeks after Arturo was killed, Carlos Beltran Leyva was arrested in Culiacan, the capital of Sinaloa state, where he was going by the alias of Carlos Gamez.
Hector Beltran Leyva took over control of the cartel after Arturo’s death, but he had to battle a rival faction led by Edgar Valdez Villarreal for control of the organization.
Valdez Villarreal, known as “La Barbie,” was arrested by the Federal Police on Aug. 30, 2010.