Blog dedicated to reporting on Mexican drug cartels
on the border line between the US and Mexico

Monday, February 27, 2017

Bloody war for power in Sinaloa

After a series of internal fights, experts believe that the "New Generation Jalisco Cartel" will displace them all; After the extradition of "El Chapo", there is a power vacuum, only "El Mayo" remains, they say.

Made in Sinaloa. It is the seal of the main Mexican drug traffickers founders of the organization that bears the same name and has survived more than two decades of fighting and betrayals.

Although it was created by relatives and real good friendships, which emerged for more than 27 years ago, today the Sinaloa Cartel is fragmented and in dispute. If the internal problem is not resolved, the New Generation Jalisco Cartel (CJNG) could be the organization that will take control, warn the experts on the issue.

Antonio Mazzitelli, regional representative of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), says that El Chapo Guzmán's organization has become the most powerful in the world.

"With the recapture and extradition of El Chapo to the US, only one leadership remains there, the one of Ismael El Mayo Zambada, which means there is a power vacuum."

Friday, February 24, 2017

Doctor Mireles

 Doctor Mireles has not died.  I took the post down for now.  

That said .... my dear friend is very ill, and the authorities are not getting him treatment for his heart. His heart has stopped several times in the past few months.  An he has developed a severe heart arrhythmia The heart condition is from his severe diabetes and lack of medical attention.  Authorities withheld medication and food from him for periods of time causing damage.  He also suffered two falls and sustained a severe spinal injury, re-injuring his spinal injury from the airplane crash.

these are his words recently:
"In every minute I have up to four times dysrhythmia, that is, my heart  stops beating, for some time I have denounced that the authorities have  harassed me in many ways and now the coronary blockage  is from the lack of adequate professional attention that I need due to the cardiac problem that I suffer."
If there is substantiated reports we will post, otherwise lets pray he lives until Pena is out of office when he will have a good chance of being released in a new administration.  Maybe if enough public pressure is applied, authorities will at least get him the medical attention he desperately needs.


OPINION: Mireles Is Dead! (To The Media)

Father Gregorio López Gerónimo | Translated by Valor for Borderland Beat

My primary intention when I first translated the article wasn’t to create misinformation or write a “fake news” piece or “clickbait” as other websites have done and as I have been accused of.  I know I should’ve added a disclaimer the first time I published this piece but I forgot to and I posted it in a hurry and for that, I apologize.  I was hoping that readers would read the article and make sense of the metaphors Father Goyo was alluding to. - V

Today, February 24, 2017, four years after the surgeon, in the repletion of violence and impunity, he left his practice and joined the men and women who decided to leave their anonymity and cowardice to be the voice of those “without voice”; after his heroic deed, José Manuel Mireles Valverde is dead and nothing could be expected from the criminal government of Enrique Peña Nieto, who has murdered him as he did with the 43 young men of Ayotzinapa, and as with other innocents in Tatlaya, Tanuhato y Apatzingán.

Only a state crime of such magnitude is possible, when the government is usurped by those who do not possess the slightest intuition of law, justice, dignity, or human rights.  Foolishness is abused when someone is condemned to life imprisonment when that person is recognized for his innocence and courage, leaving in exchange seven free and covered up former governors in payment for political favors and who have plunged 39 million inhabitants, from the states that they have stolen from, into misery.

An outrage is also committed when the privileges of house arrest is granted to Elba Esther Gordillo, who today has 20 million children falling behind in education; as well as when in Michoacán, it releases another scum of the same party of the institutionalized corruption for seven thousand pesos.

For the current administration, it is not a crime to steal education and the future of a generation, to wring out jobs and the livelihood of a people, nor to collaborate with criminal organizations in the disappearance of more than three thousand Michoacanos.  However, it takes a weapon, to defend itself in a failed state, where there was no law, no justice, and no rule of law; only corruption, impunity, kidnappings, uprisings, and deaths.

Four years after the historic February 24, 2013, Mireles has died for defending life.  His agony began on June 27, 2014, when Alfredo Castillo took him to jail so that he wouldn’t interfere with the Port of Lázaro Cárdenas, where the juicy businesses of the dominant cartel are.  From that moment, Mireles began to be veiled by the Mexican people; unaware that that’s how it was done while he reviewed the media obituary in the police sections of the newspapers.

Thursday, February 23, 2017

Gente de la Tia Juana report: Readjustment in Nayarit

Original article available at Gente de la Tia Juana
Translated by El Wachito
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After the execution of the Mazatlecos bosses of the plaza, H2 and his nephew H9, their closest sicarios have now organized themselves under the command of "El Mencho".

The new boss of the plaza is Martin de la Zapata, along with Luis Francisco Osuna Ontiveros, alias "La Thalia", both were raised in Mazatlan.

Martin was a gunman of "El Chapo" Guzman when he was detained in April 5th of 2011, in Lomas of Mazatlan, Sinaloa, on board two armored SUV's and an arsenal of weapons. Back then, his direct boss was "El Micky", "M17" or "666", brothers of "El Thalia".

Mexico: Murders up by a third following Guzman's extradition

Posted by DD from materials BBC and Mexico News Daily

By DD for Borderland Beat
The Mexican authorities had predicted a surge in violence following Guzman's extradition and promised to deploy extra troops.   This time the Mexican government was correct in their predictions.

Official figures from Mexico show that the number of homicides in the entire country was higher by a third in January compared to the same month of 2016.  

And their crystal ball probably told them it would be a worse increase in the areas where the Sinaloa Cartel were active or had a presence.  They were right on the money there also. 

In the states of Baja California, Chihuahua and Guzman's native Sinaloa, homicides were up by 50% in January.

US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and Department of Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly are due to meet Mexico's Foreign Secretary, Luis Videgaray, in Mexico City on Thursday. Feb. 23.  

The talks are expected to focus on migration and the wall the US intends to build along its southern border.

But they are also due to discuss security and ways of curbing the power of Mexico's drug trafficking gangs.  They will have a lot to talk about - the successes and failures Mexico has had.

Tijuana: In midst of relentless violence, human head found on Avenida Internacional

Human head found on Avenida Internacional

As violence grips the city, another severed head was found on Avenida Internacional this afternoon, shutting down traffic and generating a large mobilization of police.  A suitcase, found in front of the PRI offices, contained a severed human head.  There is no reports on the victim, or the rest of his limbs, or torso.  On Saturday, another body was found stuffed in a suitcase, on Pacifica Boulevard.

In a grim bit of irony, the photo displaying the scene, shows a traffic sign for Revolucion looming above a decapitated head, cut with a machete, or strong knife, pressed into the neck until it cuts through the bones and veins, blood spurting from the wounds.  Revolucion, where Tijuana has seen a resurgence in recent years, as locals and US citizens cross to party and socialize in bars and clubs, which are higher end, and lower in price then the ones across the border. 

Revolucion also includes Zona Norte where bands of retails cells, including families, have waged a bloody war for control, since the execution of Luis Manuel Toscano, El Mono, a Colima native, who maintained power for years, despite numerous arrests.  Elements of Los Aquiles, and Los Toscanos, and the CTNG vie for control of the lucrative area.  Public executions, bodies and mantas dropped off have become a normal part of life in the area.  

Near pure, very cheap crystal, and highly cut cocaine are sold in wraps in La Zona, which fuel the 24 hour party scene of the nightclubs and Zona De Tolerencia, including clubs like Hong Kong.  The retail business used to be the gringos, and still maintains a market share, but the crystal meth has become a local business, infecting the neighborhoods, with venereal disease like spreading.  

Violence has flowed through the city, blood and rain soaked streets, on the heels of a storm, over the last week.  There were 4 attacks just tonight.  A man shot in Zona Rio days ago.  Another killed in a bar, La Cueva De Peludo.  A man found entambado, stuffed in a grey trash can, on Calle Coahuila.  A severed human leg tossed onto the street in Zona Centro, Cinco De Mayo.  A man's body dropped off, in Colonia Matamoros, a rope around his neck, his body barely recognizable, burnt black all over, charred skin flicking off the corpse.

Sources: AFN Tijuana 

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Michoacán: Shootout Leaves 8 Dead

Translated by Valor for Borderland Beat

Eight people were found dead after two groups of organized crime clashed with each other.

The shootout took place on Tuesday in the municipality of Múgica with the dead bodies of six people identified as Miguel C., Crisóforo M., Narciso P., Carlos I., Saúl I. and Moisés G., who were inhabitants of Múgica and La Piedad.

Later, on Wednesday, February 22, 2017, two other shot up bodies were found while another man was arrested in a hospital in Apatzingán where he was being treated for a gunshot wound in his leg.  The man identified as Uriel G., also had other bruises.  It is thought that he also participated in the shooting.

Cartel de Sinaloa sicarios send a message to Damaso *Video*

Original article available at DEBATE
Translated by El Wachito
Visit Borderland Beat Instagram account 

In a video that has been shared in social media and Whatsapp groups, appear five man that are dressed in black tactical uniforms and carry high powered assault rifles. 

One of them is sitting down and he appears to be in charge of the message were they send death threats to Damaso Lopez, and they accuse him of being a DEA informant. The man mentions that Damaso is a traitor and that he wont be able to put a decent fight against the Cartel De Sinaloa, and they also mention that Damaso Lopez is currently hiding in Baja California Sur.

Morelos: Two Families Attacked on Separate Occasions, 5 Dead

By: Jaime Luis Brito | Translated by Valor for Borderland Beat

Cuernavaca, Morelos. — Two families were shot in the municipalities of Cuernavaca and Jiutepec, leaving five people dead.

 In the first instance, three members of a family, among them a 10 year old girl, were killed by gunfire this past Sunday (Feb. 19) morning in the neighborhood Lomas de Ahuatlán, located north of Cuernavaca.

Two of the victims, a woman and a ten year old girl, were found aboard a gray Nissan Tsuru, with plates from Mexico City.  While the third victim, a man, was lying outside the vehicle, on the street, Santa Ana de Amanalco.

Police forces belonging to the State Commission of Security, Attorney General of Justice, and other organizations arrived at the scene in order to carry out investigations and to remove the bodies.

At about the same time, a group of armed men attacked several people in a cemetery located in the Jardín Juárez neighborhood in Jiutepec, where at least two of them died: a man at the scene and a woman on the way to the Mexican Social Security Institute (IMSS) hospital.

According to the police reports, a man, a 9 and a 10 year old minor, and two women, were outside a cemetery on Jesús Achavitia Street when a white Suburban attacked them.

The man, who was in a metropolitan taxi, died at the scene.  Meanwhile, the other victims were transferred to the clinic #1 of the IMSS, located on Plan de Ayala Avenue in Cuernavaca.  One of the wounded women died along the way to the clinic.

On February 6, in the neighborhood Lauro Ortega in the municipality of Temixco, a family of five was attacked.  All were wounded, while three died: two men and an eight month old girl.

This past weekend, other violent acts occurred:

I didnt shoot at the Guzmans and I am a friend of Mayo Zambada says Damaso

Translated by Otis B Fly-Wheel for Borderland Beat from a Riodoce article

Reporter: Javier Valdez

The fight between narco groups causes death, pain and torment

The group headed by Damaso Lopez Nunez didn't attack Ivan Archivaldo and Alfredo Guzman Salazar, known as "Los Chapitos" or "Los Menors", neither have they broken with Ismael Zambada Garcia, "El Mayo", affirmed a member of this criminal organization sent by El Licenciado to be interviewed by Riodoce.

He said he was incorrect that this confrontation with Zambada, who he qualified as a fine person, respectable and a pacifier, of crucial importance to the Sinaloa Cartel, and that he was not invited to the meeting that took place on the Saturday the 4th of February, which was attended by the Guzman brothers and El Mayo.

Of this encounter, he found out on Sunday and the first days of the next week, when there were versions of that the gunman of Lopez Nunez had attacked "Los Menores". Unofficial versions indicated that neither Zambada Garcia no "Los Chapitos" were injured, like they said in a letter sent to Ciro Gomez Leyva this past week.

According to unofficial versions, the meeting took place close to the community of Paredones, adjacent to the Jesus Maria sindicatua, where there had been an agreement for a meeting between the 3 grand capos of the Sinaloa Cartel: Ismael Zamabada and the Guzmans, even though initially it had been said that Damaso Lopez Nunez would also be attending.

The date set was the 4th of February, to the North of the Sinaloa State capital. The sources said that to reach the site of the meeting, they had to cross the Humaya river in a panga, accompanied by bodyguards of "El Mayo".

Leading these was one of the security chiefs of "El Mayo", "El Ruso" or "The Russian", who he met and escorted the boat for those attending the meeting. The meeting was at a place where there was a strong presence of the Mexican Army, who after the ambush of September the 30th, in which five soldiers were killed who were transferring a wounded subject from Badiraguatto to Culiacan and a Red Cross medic was injured.

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Clandestino: Sinaloa Cartel Documentary by David Beriain episode 2 and 3

Prior recommended reading: Clandestino Episode 1

Episode 2

Episode 3

Armed Commandos take control of Villa Juarez, Navolato *Video*

Original article available at ZETA
Translated by El Wachito
Follow Borderland Beat on our Instagram account: Borderland Beat 

In another episode of the war between the people of Damaso Lopez Nuñez "El Licenciado", and the sons of the extradited Leader of the Cartel de Sinaloa, Joaquin Guzman Loera, this Tuesday an armed commando made an incursion into Villa Juarez, Navolato.

Picture available on Instagram

According to government sources of the Security Council, Ivan Archivaldo and his brother Jesus Aldredo Guzman Salazar are trying to take back the control of the region, and two weeks after a strong armed clash, again the cell of Los Chimales broke the climate of tranquility of the small community.

The convoy of sicarios consisted on at least 30 pick up trucks, SUV's and sedan vehicles, and they were driving at fast speeds. They had an X marked in the sides of the vehicles, and according to estimates from the Ministerial Police of the State, there were at least 50 armed gunman at the service of Los Chapitos.

The Cartels Next Door (last of a series of 6): Can we stem the drug tide?

Posted by DD Republished from Albuquerque Journal
Thanks to BB reader Judeg99 for the heads-up on this story

Previous in 6 part series;
Part One: Cartels' Roots Run Deep in N.M.
Part Two;  Far from dead, Juárez Cartel flexes its muscles
Part Three:  ‘Mayor of Mexico’ ran a slick operation
Part Four;   Mexican drug lords corner meth market
Part Five:  Despite cartel ban on local sales, Juárez meth use surges

By Mike Gallagher / Journal Investigative Reporter
Customs and Border Protection officer uses a drug-sniffing dog at the Santa Teresa port of entry. (Roberto E. Rosales/Journal)
Americans are consuming drugs of all kinds at an alarming rate. Our appetite for heroin, methamphetamine, prescription painkillers and marijuana seems insatiable. The Journal published the first five parts of an investigative report from Feb. 12 through Feb. 16, revealing how the Mexican drug cartels account for 90 percent of the illegal drugs consumed in the U.S. that fuel crime and addiction. Law enforcement constantly busts drug runners and seizes contraband. But the river flows on, and efforts to make real inroads are complicated and multinational and will take years. Today, the Journal concludes the series with a look at those efforts.

Over the Christmas holidays, seven people were charged with transporting more than 52 pounds of methamphetamine in four separate incidents in and around Albuquerque.

There was a time when any one of those arrests would have been big local news here, even though all the drugs were destined for Oklahoma City, Columbia, S.C., and other cities.

But arrests and seizures are so commonplace, and drugs so ubiquitous, they scarcely moved the media interest meter.

It’s not as though the arrests were inconsequential.

Federal agents say that by intercepting drugs carried by “mules” at the Amtrak and Greyhound stations or during traffic stops on I-40, they are having an impact on the country’s drug problem. The 52 pounds of methamphetamine seized on Dec. 28 and 30 represent more than 23,000 grams of meth that would have been sold on the streets of New York for more than $2.3 million.

But did these busts make much of an impact on the supply of methamphetamine wreaking havoc coast to coast? Not even a dent.

Heroin and methamphetamine smuggled from Mexico into the United States by Mexican cartels are more abundant, cheaper and more powerful than ever. And the cartels provide plenty of marijuana as well, although the price is a little higher than it was a few years ago.

In addition, the Mexican cartels have added fentanyl – a cheap synthetic opioid 100 times more powerful than morphine – to the mix of illicit drugs smuggled into the United States.

While Mexico has been a frequent target of President Donald Trump, both governments have a huge challenge in trying to rein in the cartels.

Most drugs enter the United States through the ports of entry, and Trump’s suggestion that a “wall” along the border will curb drug trafficking has been met with some skepticism from within his own political party.

“There are a lot of ways to defeat the wall,” Rep. Steve Pearce, R-N.M., said in an interview last week. “They can fly over it with light aircraft using GPS on bundles of drugs. The cartels have great tunnelers. They’ve had tunnels with traffic in both directions.”

Monday, February 20, 2017


Posted by DD for Borderland Beat material from El Manana and Reynosa News

For the fourth consecutive day, shootings and deaths in Reynosa. 

Although so far there are no official reports, one of the strongest clashes occurred in the Lomas Section, where neighbors say four armed men were left dead on the street, six others in a taxi and two more in the interior of a dwelling. 

By air and land, the clashes spread to the Monterey-Matamoros outpost where vehicles were
abandoned and numerous units were consumed by fire in a junk yard.

In the Villa Esmeralda fractionation, personnel from the Forensic Medical Service withdrew two other bodies of people killed during the shootout in the southeast of the city, although  neighbors said that inside the building there were more dead men.

At that place  were seized weapons and vehicles used by men killed during this early morning. From there, they moved to Fuentes Lomas Section to collect the bodies of the rest of the men.

 Elements of the Mexican Army, Secretary of Marine, State and Expert Services, are concentrated in both sectors where there were dead to investigate and gather  evidence of the facts.

The shootings began around 2 am, when detonations began to be heard in various parts of the city.  As is usual in Reynosa  social network users were the primary source of news. The action of high-powered weapons, coupled with the sound of the helicopter of the Secretary of the Navy, awoke the population that alerted the clashes through social networks.

The reynosense population lived that day of terror as more than a dozen dead killed  during the early hours of Sunday as the shootings and persecutions were unleashed in the south of the city

Social Media is reporting that the violence and death is continuing into today (Monday).  "A man executed, tied hands, was found a few moments ago on the bank of the channel Anzalduas, in the ejido Palo Blanco. So far has not been identified the body that also had bandaged the face with cinnamon tape.  Wrapped in a blanket, wearing a cherry shirt, denim trousers and black sneakers, they left the body lying close to a vacant lot.  In the stomach you can see a red spot, like from blows suffered at the moment of being tortured."

Social media is also reporting that 3 waiters from a bar are awaiting being turned over to the Magisteria  police after Transit Police stopped them for driving the wrong way on a one way street and found a body in the vehicle

The waiters from the bar were traveling in a white Ford Ranger with several black plastic garbage bags in the back of the truck.  The Transit Police were only intending to issue a ticket for the traffick violation until while searching the truck they found a dead body in a garbage bag under all the others. 
In this situation the highway agents immediately detained the suspects and then put them at the disposal of the ministerial authorities for them to take over.

The events occurred at 03:00 o'clock this morning in the street Azucena between Jazmines and Boulevard Morelos of the colony Fernandez Gomez.

17 Killed in Chihuahua over the weekend.

Posted by DD, republished in part from El Manana

DD: The headlines concerning cartels and volence lately have been mostly about cartels realigning and capos being arrested or killed in the southern states of Mexico.  Meanwhile,, without the headlines.  it has been business as usual in the border states.- most violence since 2010. 

n the central area of ​​Álvaro Obregón was located a burned Cherokee SUV,  and in the community of La Quemada was found pickup Silverado, white. Photo: Agencia Reforma 
Chihuahua, Mexico.- Seventeen people were executed this weekend in Chihuahua : six in the capital, nine in Ciudad Juárez and three in the highlands, where there was also a shooting with more than 2,000 shots fired, reported the Attorney General's Office State.  (DD: I know that adds up to 18, but that is report from the state Atty. Gen. office - math is not their strong suit). 

In Chihuahua , this Sunday a woman was shot dead in the streets Paseos de Azteca and Pastizal in the Colonia Paseos de Camino Real.

Also in the capital, another woman was found murdered on a dirt road in Colonia Granjas del Valle.

As early as Saturday morning, a man was executed while sleeping in a house in Colonia Sol de Oriente.

In addition, a woman was killed and a man was injured when a bullet hit outside of an address in Colonia 2 de Octubre.

Another homicide was registered in the Colony 20th Anniversary, where a subject died from gunshots in a mechanic's workshop.

During the night of Saturday, one man died and another one was wounded in a bullet attack in the Proletarian Unit Colony.

In Ciudad Juárez, meanwhile, on Saturday morning, a woman was executed in Colonia Carlos Castillo Peraza when she left her home.

Also on Saturday, before noon, two men were shot to death while attending a food stall in El Mezquital Fraccionamiento.

In another incident, one man was killed and another wounded in an armed attack on Francisco Pimentel Street in Colonia Álvaro Obregón.

While on Friday night, a dentist died in a hospital after being shot in the parking lot of his office in a shopping plaza on Avenida Paseo de la Victoria and almost Camino Viejo in San Jose.

In addition, the Attorney General's Office in the north reported the finding of three bones in a house in Colonia Azteca, after the arrest of a man who provided data on the existence of bodies in the home.

It was also reported that in a bullet attack recorded on February 15 at a hairdresser on the streets of September 16 and Cadmio, one of the wounded was a minor and died in a hospital.

The child was identified as Christopher Giovanni Ramirez, 14, a student in Technical High School number 1, who had come to have his hair cut. He was buried on Saturday.

In the mountainous area of Chihuahua , on Friday, a man was reported to have been inside a green 2000 Volkswagen Jetta, on the Bocoyna to Creel road, at kilometer 75 and a half.

He was identified as Luis Bernardo Chacón Olivas, 35 years old. The FGE reported that the vehicle had a theft report in Cuauhtemoc.

Also on Friday reported the finding of a man shot dead in a sawmill in the community of Santa Rita,in the municipality of Madera.

The body was about 30 meters from the entrance of the sawmill, covered with a white sheet, and in place were secured six bushings of a .38 caliber super gun.

In the community of Álvaro Obregón, known as Rubio, in the Municipality of Cuauhtémoc, there was a confrontation during which more than 2 thousand shots of weapons of different calibres were made,according to the FGE.

"It was possible to establish that 2,446 gunshots were carried out on the site, such as R-15, AK 47, 40-caliber pistols and 308 assault rifle," the agency said.

The shooting which left two people injured,, a police officer and the driver of a trailer, was registered at 3:00 p.m. on Friday.  (DD;  nearly 2500 shots fired and only 2 people injured - either bad math again or sicarios who were really bad shots). Five abandoned vehicles with a robbery report were located at the site.

The municipal agent was identified as Eidy Guadalupe Saucedo Holguín, 19 years of age, domiciled in the Anahuac section.

"He told investigators that he was circulating in a public security patrol of that section to attend to  the report of shooting when he was hit by the bullets," said the FGE.

He said he was able to drive the patrol to Colombia Street and Rubio road in Cuauhtémoc, where he received the support of Red Cross paramedics.

The agent had multiple gunshot wounds on his chest, neck and legs and was then transferred to a hospital.

The Cartels Next Door (fifth in a 6 part series): Despite cartel ban on local sales, Juárez meth use surges

Posted by DD republished from Albuquerque Journal
Thanks to BB reader Judeg99 for the heads-up on this story

Previous in 6 part series;
Part One: Cartels' Roots Run Deep in N.M.
Part Two;  Far from dead, Juárez Cartel flexes its muscles
Part Three:  ‘Mayor of Mexico’ ran a slick operation
Part Four;   Mexican drug lords corner meth market

By Lauren Villagran** / Journal Staff Writer - Las Cruces Bureau

A recovering meth addict, 26-year-old Alfredo, lights a marijuana pipe during an interview in Ciudad Juárez. (Roberto E. Rosales/Journal)
  One addict says it’s 100 times better than heroin or cocaine. He’s talking about the methamphetamine that Mexican cartels provide to U.S. users in huge quantities but have tried to ban in Juárez. Dealers were even warned recently that anyone trafficking in meth locally would be killed in a “cleansing.” Even so, meth use has surged in Juárez, wreaking the same destruction on users there that it does in the U.S.

Fifth In A Series

CIUDAD JUÁREZ – For the longest time, meth was “forbidden” on the streets of this gritty metropolis.

Two recovering addicts walk back to their sleeping quarters at the Volver a Vivir recovery center in Ciudad Juárez. (Roberto E. Rosales/Journal)
When people say “forbidden,” they don’t mean by law, although methamphetamine is as illegal in Mexico as it is in the U.S. What they mean is forbidden by the cartels

But there is so much meth now flooding this border region that the drug has begun leaking into the local market, hooking addicts from poor barrios to well-off neighborhoods and sparking friction between the Sinaloa Cartel – a major meth producer – and the Juárez Cartel, which preferred until recently to push heroin, cocaine and marijuana.

An adult recovering methamphetamine addict fixes his bed in the crowded sleeping quarters at the Volver a Vivir recovery center. (Roberto E. Rosales/Journal)
Both cartels use Ciudad Juárez as a gateway to the lucrative U.S. drug market, and the city has fallen victim to a trend as old as the existence of borders between nations.

“If you look back in history, anytime there is contraband transited through an area, eventually people along the route start using the product,” said Will Glaspy, special agent in charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration’s El Paso field office, which covers New Mexico. “It also goes to show if there is methamphetamine on the street in CJ, it’s coming through here in pound quantities.”

Drug seizure statistics show it’s coming by the hundreds of pounds locally and tens of thousands of pounds borderwide.

Meth busts in New Mexico and West Texas by the DEA and U.S. Customs and Border Protection have surged.

Sunday, February 19, 2017

The Cartels Next Door (4th in a series of 6): Mexican drug lords corner meth market

Posted by DD Republished from Albuquerque Journal
Thanks to BB reader Judeg99 for the heads-up on this story

Previous in 6 part series;
Part One: Cartels' Roots Run Deep in N.M.
Part Two;  Far from dead, Juárez Cartel flexes its muscles
Part Three:  ‘Mayor of Mexico’ ran a slick operation
The Anapra neighborhood of Ciudad Juárez, where cartels compete for control of local and international drug distribution. (Roberto E. Rosales/Albuquerque Journal)

 By Mike Gallagher / Journal Investigative Reporter

FOURTH IN A SERIES: Once the drug of choice for outlaw motorcycle gangs, methamphetamine is now a major moneymaker for Mexican drug cartels. At one time, it was mostly “cooked” locally in seedy motel rooms or trailer parks using over-the-counter cold remedies. Now, law enforcement estimates that about 90 percent of the meth consumed in the United States comes across the border. The drug can be smoked, snorted, injected or taken orally. “We’re seeing meth dealers go after kids as young as 13 on social media,” said APD Deputy Chief Eric Garcia. “That’s who they’re marketing to.”

Luis Rangel-Arce
Miguel Rangel-Arce, 36, and brother Luis Rangel-Arce, 44, set up shop west of Farmington on the Navajo reservation in 2015. They were there to make money selling methamphetamine supplied by the Sinaloa Cartel.

They rented a house and recruited locals, both Navajo and Anglo, to sell the drug on the reservation and in the neighborhoods of Farmington and Bloomfield. It was a tightly run ring with five retail dealers handling direct sales to users.

But the Rangel brothers, both from Mexico by way of Phoenix, came to the attention of federal investigators because of an increase in crime and use of methamphetamine in the Shiprock area on the Navajo nation.

In 2016, the two men and others were arrested for selling methamphetamine directly to undercover officers. Authorities seized more than 2½ pounds of the drug worth a minimum of $150,000, along with 10 firearms, during the arrests.

“Methamphetamine continues to have a devastating impact on Native American families and communities,” said U.S. Attorney Damon P. Martinez.

Martinez said the same thing a year earlier when law enforcement in the southern part of the state arrested Carlos Tafoya and 34 others in December 2015 for trafficking methamphetamine on the Mescalero Apache Reservation near Ruidoso.

The Mescalero Apache arrests also followed an increase in violent crime attributed to methamphetamine use on the reservation, including a horrific assault on a young girl by two teenage boys who were high on meth.

Joseph Ray Mendiola, 35, of Roswell, was the focus of another investigation that led to federal and state charges against 41 people. The investigation involved the FBI, DEA, State Police and local law enforcement agencies.

Investigators seized more than 16 pounds of methamphetamine from Mendiola and his associates in Roswell.

It’s the same story over and over. High-quality, inexpensive methamphetamine supplied by Mexican cartels is a problem from the reservations to the oil patch, from cities to rural New Mexico.

Meth is a highly addictive stimulant, and the crime that accompanies it is often violent – from the shooting death of a police officer in Rio Rancho to the brutal assaults on young girls in Albuquerque and the Mescalero Reservation.

Saturday, February 18, 2017

The Cartels Next Door: (3rd in a 6 part series); ‘Mayor of Mexico’ ran a slick operation

Posted by DD Republished from Albuquerque Journal
Thanks to BB reader Judeg99 for the heads-up on this story.

Previous in 6 part series;
Part One: Cartels' Roots Run Deep in N.M.
Part Two;  Far from dead, Juárez Cartel flexes its muscles 

A tunnel built by the Sinaloa Cartel between Tijuana and San Diego, discovered by law enforcement in December 2016. (Dean Hanson/Albuquerque Journal)

By Mike Gallagher / Journal Investigative Reporter

THIRD IN A SERIES: Drugs come across the U.S.-Mexican border in many ways – from Mexican couriers carrying backpacks across the desert to sophisticated trucking operations designed to thwart U.S. border and customs officials to elaborate tunnels. A lot gets seized, but the amount that gets through generates billions of dollars in profits for the cartels and fuels a host of problems here, from addiction to crimes committed to finance the “habit.”

The pallets marked as frozen sea cucumbers, a delicacy in some Asian restaurants, crossed

easily from Mexico into the U.S. by truck at a border crossing between Tijuana and San Diego.

After all, frozen seafood moves relatively quickly through U.S. Customs and Border Protection at ports of entry along the Southwestern border. Each port has a limited budget to pay for “spoilage” during unsuccessful drug searches, so without specific information or indicators of drugs in the load of seafood, the loads get processed rapidly.

Once in San Diego, the seafood was flown to Buffalo, in upstate New York, where the pallets – which were actually loaded with heroin, cocaine and fentanyl – were broken open and distributed to drug dealers in western New York.

The money from the drug sales was then laundered through a series of companies, sent to bank accounts in California and then south of the border.

It was a classic Sinaloa Cartel operation, hiding the drugs in plain sight, pushing them out to consumers willing to pay hard cash, and then using legal fronts and banks to cover the money trail.

It was run by Jose Ruben Gil, known within the organization as the “Mayor of Mexico.”

The operation involved people throughout the drug trafficking organization who were tightly aligned with the Sinaloa Cartel, not only in smuggling the drugs, but also in arranging for the money to get back to Mexico. The volume and value of the drugs involved is considered to be too high to “front” to independent operators.

Friday, February 17, 2017

The Cartels Next Door:(2nd in a 6 part series) Far from dead, Juárez Cartel flexes its muscles

Posted by DD republished from Albuquerque Journal
Thanks to BB reader Judeg99 for the heads-up on this story.

 By Mike Gallagher / Journal Investigative Reporter

Which cars in the daily traffic jam on the Bridge of the Americas heading into the United States are being used by the Juárez Cartel to smuggle heroin, cocaine and methamphetamine across the border? (Roberto E. Rosales/Albuquerque Journal) 
SECOND IN A SERIES: The Juárez Cartel is one of the heavyweights among Mexican drug cartels that earn billions in profits as they funnel heroin, cocaine, methamphetamine and marijuana into drug-hungry countries such as the United States. Crime, death and ruined lives flow right along with those drugs to places as varied as New York City, West Virginia, Albuquerque and Española.

The death of the Juárez Cartel has been greatly exaggerated. In fact, it is alive and well and doing a booming business.

Thursday, February 16, 2017

The threat from Sinaloa

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Original article available at ZETA 
Translated by El Wachito

They are being hunted like flies, and all of them are informants because they are giving away locations and contacts, that's the way that "The Damaso" operate, they go after them and if they find them, it is likely that they will engage in armed combat", warned a trusted source to ZETA, about the war in Sinaloa that has expanded to La Paz and Los cabos.

El Chango Mendez of LFM, with one foot in the USA

Translated by Otis B Fly-Wheel for Borderland Beat from a Milenio article

Subject Matter: Jesus 'El Chango' Mendez, La Familia Michoacana
Recommendation: No prior subject matter knowledge required

A minister of the Supreme Court will ponder of whether or not to deny an amparo, promoted by the leader of the cartel La Familia Michoacana, promoted against the law on International extradition.

Reporter: Rueben Mosso
The ex leader of the La Familia Michoacana cartel, Jesus 'El Chango' Mendez is on the point of being extradited to the USA, after a Minister of the Supreme Court of Justice of the Nation ponders whether to deny his amparo, promoted by the capo to impugn the law of International extradition.

In a case of protection approval, the case will return to the Primary Collegiate Court in Penal matters  of Mexico City in order to resolve some legal aspects and after conclusion, the PGR could execute the order of extradition.

The Federal District Court of South New York is claiming 'El Chango' Mendez because between 2006 and July of 2011, during his leadership of La Familia, he is associated with distribution in USA territory of cocaine and crystal meth.

The Cartels Next Door (a 6 part series) : Cartels' Roots Run Deep in N.M.

Posted by DD Republished from Albuquerque Journal 
Thanks to BB reader Judeg99 for the heads-up on this story.
By Mike Gallagher / Journal Investigative Reporter
 Mexico’s drug cartels earn billions of dollars in profits as they funnel heroin, cocaine, methamphetamine and marijuana into drug-hungry countries, including the United States. Crime, death and ruined lives flow right along with those drugs to places as varied as New York City, West Virginia coal country, Albuquerque, Española and western Europe. Despite the efforts of law enforcement, the cartels rival international corporations in size and reach. The drugs they peddle are cheaper and more plentiful than ever before, claiming thousands of victims every year. The Albuquerque Journal today begins a six-part investigative report on a criminal enterprise wreaking havoc across the country.

A Ciudad Juárez drug runner who goes by the name of Saxon. (Roberto E. Rosales/Journal
You don’t have to look south across the border to see the Mexican drug cartels in operation. They are operating right next door.

Heroin rings and methamphetamine dealers with direct connections to international drug traffickers based in Mexico have operated out of stash houses in Albuquerque’s Northeast Heights, horse ranches in Valencia County, communities on the Navajo Nation and small towns a stone’s throw from the Mexican border.

And while we in New Mexico focus on drug-fueled property crimes such as auto theft and horrific violence such as the murders of 10-year-old Victoria Martens and Rio Rancho police officer Gregg “Nigel” Benner, our state is much more than a local market. It is a primary corridor for the cartels to ship drugs nationwide.

Federal law enforcement estimates the Sinaloa Cartel alone controls somewhere between 40 and 60 percent of illegal drugs used in the United States. It supplies dealers in cities and states including New York City, Chicago, Los Angeles, Phoenix, New England, New Jersey, Ohio, Pennsylvania and New Mexico.

The Juárez Cartel supplies heroin, methamphetamine, cocaine and marijuana dealers in North Carolina, Alabama, Oklahoma, Minnesota, New Mexico and parts of Texas.
A Homeland Security officer inspects the interior of a tractor-trailer rig that had been carrying produce into the United States through the port of entry at Santa Teresa. (Roberto E. Rosales/Journal)

There is plenty of proof of Mexican cartel operations in New Mexico, as evidenced by some of the operations taken down by law enforcement. For example:

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

The High Cost of Torture in Mexico

Posted by DD republished from Human Rights Watch
Originally published in Animal Politico
Managing Director, Americas Division

Secretary of Defense (SEDENA) Apologizes For Soldiers Using Torture
 Torture will be on the agenda of the Mexican Congress this month. Curbing the widespread practice should be an urgent priority for all branches of the Mexican government. Its impact on Mexico has been devastating, not only for the many individual victims, but also for the credibility of the criminal justice system itself.



Take, for example, the case of Taylin Wang and “Pedro Salazar,” a kidnap victim for whom we’ll use a pseudonym to protect his identify and privacy.

Wang came to Mexico from her native Peru seven years ago in search of a better future for her children. She found work selling clothes, then opened a Peruvian restaurant. She married a Mexican, and together they were raising her 7- and 9-year-old daughters and 16-year-old son. When the federal police raided their home in February 2014, she was 7-weeks pregnant.

Recently, Wang provided Human Rights Watch with her account of the raid, in the hope—she said—that her story might help prevent others from a similar fate.

Wang and her husband, who had gone to bed late after watching a horror movie, were awakened by police bursting into their residence around 3 a.m. The officers did not present an arrest warrant. Instead they pulled her out of bed, called her a “whore,” and demanded to know where her “lover” was. They took her husband to another room, where they were holding the three children.

One of the officers stripped off Wang’s nightgown and forced her onto the bed. With the other officers looking on, he raped her with his gun, mashed her breasts with his hands, and asked if she liked it.

El Mochomo files to rescind guilty plea and Chapo Update

by Chivis Martinez for Borderland Beat
El Mochomo filed with the court to withdraw his guilty plea 
 From the motion filing:
Court of Appeals considers “three factors in reviewing denials of motions to withdraw: ‘(1) whether the defendant has asserted a viable claim of innocence; (2) whether the delay between the guilty plea and the motion to withdraw has substantially prejudiced the government's ability to prosecute the case; and (3) whether the guilty plea was somehow tainted.’” West, 392 F.3d at 455. The District Court has broad discretion is reviewing a motion to withdraw a guilty plea. See, e.g., United States v. Hanson, 339 F.3d 983 (D.C. Cir. 2003).

Which do you guess is the basis of withdrawal he is using?

If you guessed (3) you are correct. And he has a good shot at being victorious at some point, maybe appeal.  I have a mountain of documents and opinion to peruse, and little time, but I am working on an overview.  As I previously reported, Mochomo was extradited on limited charges, and no ROS waiver.  Such a waiver is given by Mexico to allow or give permission to the United States to add charges subsequent to the extradition.

Sinaloa Cartel: Chino Antrax Sentencing

by Chivis Martinez for Borderland Beat
There is an scheduling update in the United States case against Rodrigo Aréchiga Gamboa.  Aréchiga is better known by his Sinaloa Cartel moniker of “Chino Antrax”. He was the one of the founders and leaders of the Sinaloa enforcer group Los Ántrax along with Jesús Peña (El 20). The group operated for and under the direction of Sinaloa Cartel leader Ismael “El Mayo” Zambada.

Aréchiga was arrested on December 30, 2013, while at the Amsterdam International Airport. Dutch police arrested the wanted man,  on behalf of a Interpol warrant issued by the United States. He was subsequently extradited to the U.S. to stand trial, but pleaded guilty after cutting a plea deal. 

According to court documents, there was a sentencing date scheduled for January 17th 2017.
“Minute Order by Judge Dana M. Sabraw: Sentence With PSR set for 1/12/2017 10:00 AM in Courtroom 13A before Judge Dana M. Sabraw.”

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

The Sinaloa counter-attack

Translated by Otis B Fly-Wheel for Borderland Beat from a Zetatijuana article

Subject Matter: Sinaloa cartel vs CJNG in Baja California Sur
Recommendation: No prior subject matter knowledge required

January 2017 has been the a very violent month, with 32 Homicides in Los Cabos, 12 In La Paz, five in Loreto,   One in Comondú and one in Mulegé. "It's already a War, of two cartels, they are fighting and we as authority, there is nothing we can do ": source of Coordination Group of  Public security

In a clear message of "here we are and we are going to face it", the Sinaloa Cartel gave a hard and bloody coup against cells of the New Generation Jalisco Cartel (CJNG) at 2:20 pm on Sunday, January 29 in the colony The Zacatal of San José del Cabo.

"It is already a place of war, the two cartels are fighting it and we as an authority we can do nothing, and if we participate maybe a massacre is worse, it was a very meaningful notice where these two people, where they practically ripped  to shreds," he said. A member of the Public Security Coordination Group in Baja California Sur, after the execution of two hitmen in the service of the cell "La Barredora".

The murder took place in Juan Pedrín Castillo and Fabián Chacho Cota, right on the corner where the Fire Station is located. According to witnesses, the deceased were "following them along the Pedrín and were "made" and terminated (...) When they were "made" the men who traveled in a black Hyundai ", tried to flee.