[ Subject Matter: Mexican Cartels
Recommendation: Some prior knowledge of Cartels past and present would be useful
See link to BB Founder Buggs article updated by BB Reporter Itzli on Cartel Structure]
Reporter: Rafael Croda, photo by Octavio Gomez
The Director of the Criminal Investigation Agency of the Attorney General of the Republic, tomas Zeron considered that in Mexico their remains only two drug Cartels, those of Sinaloa and the CJNG ; the rest are groups of hundreds of independent cells that arose from those criminal organizations that have been attacked the most, wage a bloody war for the Cities in which they operate.
"Its a phenomenon that I believe is generalized", said the functionary to Proceso.
According to this diagnostic, the detention or death of the heads of the cartels del Golfo, of Juarez, of Tijuana, Los Caballeros Templarios and Los Beltran Leyva have dispersed their criminal structures, and that they stay decapitated and fight amongst themselves in order to control their illegal businesses.
"They are cells that are trying to search for the power to survive, and that is reflected by the homicides among them. Actually the high impact killings are not happening, they are infighting for power", says the Director of the AIC.
He says that right now uniquely there remain three big Capos of drug trafficking in Mexico: Ismael Zambada "El Mayo"; Fausto Isidro Meza Flores "El Chapo Isidro" and Nemesio Oseguera Cervantes "El Mencho". The first two being leaders of the Sinaloa Cartel and the third the Boss of CJNG.
|Mencho Chapo Isidro Mayo Zambada|
Do you consider that the CJNG is at the level of the Sinaloa Cartel or that it can be more powerful?
I cant measure the two like that, I believe that it is a strong cartel with a marked presence in the States of Jalisco, Guanajuato, Colima and Michocan, for example, and with a level of strong violence also.
In Mexico there are only two drug trafficking Cartels?
It is that I have identified those Cartels that are operating and functioning. The others, as happened with the Knights Templar with the detention of Servando Gomez "La Tuta", who was apprehended in February past, the are disjointed and start to work like independent cells in the Towns.
Zeron, who head the Mexican delegation in the 32nd International Conference for the Control of Drugs, that runs from Tuesday the 2nd to the 4th in this Colombian port, is to agree on the fight against narco trafficking that is carried out as a mark of respect to human rights.
There are sectors that ask if was necessary to kill the 42 people in the confrontation of 22nd of May in Ecuandureo, Michoacan: if they were all criminals, does this amount to a major lack of respect for their human rights....
What I can comment on is that today the instruction that we have from the Attorney General of the Republic, Arely Gomez, in relation to human rights in principal; is to take care of the human rights of whomever is detained, and to follow proper processes, and it is something that every one of the elements of the PGR, principally the members of the Police, they are careful, they guard the rights of every one of all of the people that they detain.
But there were 43 dead in Ecuandureo, one of them a policeman
This is an investigation that is still open. We are working, determining what exactly happened there, and since the first moment all of the Federal Police as well as the State Attorney have given access to the National Commission for Human Rights and the Inter-American Commission for Human Rights, because today en this Government the situation is open, and if there are some people culpable, well they will be punished, and to see that they conform to the law and respect due process.
The PGR are investigating what happened there?
Initially the case was in the hands of the State Attorney General, I believe that after they have finished the expert reports on all of the bodies and the various matters that they are attending to, we are going to make available all data to SEIDO on the level. Firstly that there was an Federal Policeman involved, (killed in the confrontation) and the calibre of the arms that they found.
In the case of Operation Jalisco, on the 1st of May also there are denunciations that there was an excessive use of force
Really I have no documents on this data. The detained were really very few, and all were respected for due process. All were certificated ( Otis: I think this means medically ), I have not seen any registration that there had been violations of human rights in Villa Purificacion.
The Dispersed Groups
In Colombia there is a worry about the growing presence of envoys of the Mexican Drug Cartels, that arrive to make transactions, assure the cargo's, and to make collections to send the drugs North.
There is coordination between Mexico and Colombia to approach this problem? is this a plan of the Director of AIC.
We have coordination, but when I can comment on is that in Mexico the Cartels have been reduced. Of the 122 targets for arrest, we had at the start of the administration, we have captured or killed 100 of the most sought after.
Do you worry about the growing presence of Mexican Cartels in Colombia?
I have not observed that, because at the end, I am seeing is an internal struggle in Mexico to have control.
In this anti drugs conference there has been talk of the transformation of narco trafficking in Mexico, do you agree with those who say that the Sinaloa Cartel remains very strong?
Ill make this clear, and I believe in how much we are working agains the Sinaloa Cartel. As yet we still have not caught Chapo Isidro, Damaso Lopez Nunez know as "El Licenciado".
And Mayo Zambada?
Yes but with Mayo I don't see him operating much. Chapo Isidro I believe is carrying out the operations of the Sinaloa Cartel. Obviously, with the image that Mayo represents and with the CJNG, we are going to persevere to achieve the detention of El Mencho.
Zeron explained that the strength of the Sinaloa Cartel is in the trafficking of Cocaine, meanwhile the CJNG is more focussed on methamphetamines.
Without doubt, the anti drugs authorities of South America have detected the presence of envoys of the CJNG in various countries to traffic Cocaine, which shows that growing participation of the criminal group in this business.
And what about the remainder of the Gulf Cartel?
Well the Sicarios, they were executing their enemies and today they are converting leaders even though that seems problematic: they don't have the financial capacity nor the contacts to get drugs. So they are dedicated to other illegalities, like express kidnapping, extortion, and with this they are surviving.
And the Cartels of Tijuana and Juarez?
The Sinaloa Cartel took control there.
And Los Zetas? they have been diminished
Totally, totally, and I believe they are on the point of disintegration.
Original article in Spanish at Proceso