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

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Mexican Marines are primarily used against CdG and Los Zetas

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

Subject Matter: Mexican Marines
Recommendation: No prior subject matter knowledge required

Even though they operate against all in Tamaulipas, their operations extend to Coahuila and Nuevo Laredo, where they located El Lazca and El Z-40, among others.

Reporter: Ruben Mosso
The Secretary of the Marines is an institution that has delivered the heaviest blows that have been delivered this sexenio against the leaders, operators and lieutenants of the Cartel del Golfo and Los Zetas, criminal organizations that have a major presence in Tamaulipas for the last 17 years.

According to the information from the Navy, since 2012 they have taken down or arrested 15 operators of the top level in the municipalities of Reynosa and Nuevo Laredo, where there have been constant confrontations with the Federal forces or executions between rival cells.

However, the displacement of some criminals prompted the Special Forces of the Navy to hunt out in Coahuila and Nuevo Leon, the leaders of the these groups, where they were finally caught or killed in clashes.

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

San Diego: Tijuana motorcycle gang "Los Hooligans" indicted in sophisticated vehicle theft operation

"Los Hooligans" indicted in sophisticated vehicle theft operation

A federal indictment unsealed today named 9 members of a Tijuana based motorcycle gang, allegedly responsible for hundreds of car thefts over the last few years.  Los Hooligans have a relatively low profile in the hierarchy of San Diego motorcycle gangs and clubs, groups like the Hells Angel's and Mongols have long been the subject of federal cases, mainly racketeering, crystal meth and heroin trafficking, and violent crimes.  

San Diego, given it's proximity to the border, it's history with crystal meth, has long been a hub of vehicle theft, organize d and unorganized.  A substantial amount is generally traced to Tijuana, where the cars are stripped, or given new plates, new VIN numbers, and re sold, sometimes to organized crime groups, who prefer suburbans and jeeps.  The group is connected to Spring Valley, which has long been tied to car theft, and motorcycle clubs. 

This marks the first time a Tijuana based motorcycle gang has been subject of a major federal case.  The indictment is not as far reaching in it's targeting of Los Hooligans, and focuses on what seems to be their main criminal endeavor, the theft and subsequent sale of the cars, and their parts.  The cars were stolen from dozens of neighborhoods in San Diego, from Barrio Logan, to Rancho Santa Fe, and targeted a particular brand of jeep in the summer of 2014. 

Jeep Wranglers were being stolen at an unusually high rate, and always without triggering an alarm, or forcing entry, by breaking the glass.  Regional Auto Theft Task Force, RATTF, a conglomerate of local and federal law enforcement officials, including Homeland Security Investigations, and the San Diego District Attorney's Office, as well as the FBI, and San Diego Sheriff's Department were the primary investigators.  

While reviewing surveillance footage from a theft in Rancho Santa Fe in September 2014, investigators saw three men disabling the car's alarm and entering using a key, then starting the car with a handheld electronic device.  The investigators worked back through 20 other similar thefts, and found that duplicate keys had been ordered from Chrysler, through a dealership in Cabo San Lucas, the cars's owners were unaware.  

Assumedly, through a connection to the dealership, Los Hooligans purchased or otherwise gained access to the keys, after carefully selecting the cars for theft.  Then the cars were stolen, without much of a trace, and sold wholesale in Tijuana, or stripped down for parts.  

Los Hooligans are not connected via these indictments to any acts of violence or drug trafficking, tying them to Tijuana based cartels, or cells.  They are named as an organization in their own right, with the capacity to traffic, sell, transport, and facilitate large scale vehicle theft.  They are tied to over 150 thefts in the indictment. 

In August 2015, gunmen stormed a funeral home during a wake, and executed two individuals, and shot 7 others.  It was reported by Zeta Tijuana that the two killed were members of a Tijuana based motorcycle club in Colonia Independencia, who rivals Los Hooligans.  Zeta reports Los Hooligans were said to be responsible for the attack.  Eye witnesses to the killings tied members of Los Hooligans to the scene.

The defendants face a single count of Conspiracy to commit Transportation of Stolen Vehicles in Foreign Commerce, the maximum sentence is 5 years in prison.  

Sources: US Attorney's Office

Monday, May 29, 2017

Mexican Forces Raid Police Precinct in Zihuatanejo find 20 Officers had Drug Trafficking ties

Posted by Yaqui for Borderland Beat Republished from Fox News

Guerrero state, which is the world’s third most prolific producer of opium gum, all of which is sent north to fuel the U.S. heroin epidemic, is currently Mexico’s most murderous region.
Since last week’s operation, the Pacific resort’s municipal force has been taken off duty, leaving the state police and Mexican military to patrol the streets.

MEXICO CITY –  Following the detention of the entire municipal police force in the Mexican city of Zihuatanejo, a pleasant U.S. expat hotspot on the Pacific coast, 20 alleged drug traffickers were found to have been masquerading as cops.

Last Tuesday’s bust was conducted by state and federal police, along with the Marine Corps. Acting on mounting evidence of corruption in that precinct, they detained all 246 officers and officials until they could provide official credentials.

Alasdair Baverstock/Fox News Photo
Suspicions over local narcos masquerading as cops were first aroused in early April, when three municipal police officers disappeared from the precinct after protesting about their colleagues’activities.  

At the end of the operation, 51 arrests were made, including three high-ranking officers, but 31 were later released on charges of operating without full accreditation. The remaining 20 were charged with ties to organized crime and impersonation of public officials.

“Many of them are real police officers, but who we believe have strong ties to organized crime in the region,” Zihuatanejo’s Public Security Chief Carlos Cruz told Fox News. “The cartels are very powerful in the state of Guerrero, and we are working to purge our public bodies of links to drug trafficking.”

Since last week’s operation, the Pacific resort’s municipal force has been taken off duty, leaving the state police and Mexican military to patrol the streets.

“It was a shock,” said David Claassen, originally from Ohio, but who has lived in Mexico for the past three years. “We had no idea this was going on, as Zihuatanejo is such a peaceful and friendly place.”

On April 25, police officers who later turned out to be fake attacked a security outpost in neighboring Ixtapa and shot six officers, killing three.  (Alasdair Baverstock/Fox News)
Both the town’s mayor Gustavo Garcia and the Municipal Police Chief David Nogueda refused to comment, yet sources close to the government said it is only a matter of time before the Municipal Police force is disbanded and control of Zihuatanejo is handed over to state authorities.

Dr. Mireles Hospitalized Friday May 26, 2017

Posted by Yaqui from material at Primeraplana and Proceso

Morelia, Michoacán.- Manuel Mireles Valverde was hospitalized urgently this past Friday, May 26.  According to information provided by his family, Dr. Mireles felt bad in the early hours of Friday 26, so he was rushed to a hospitalin Morelia. 

According to the cardiologist's initial medical report, Francisco Morales, Mireles showed signs of sustained sinus  tachycardia that was accompanied by dyspnea and precordial pain.

Dr. Mireles had planned a meeting Friday afternoon with journlists who had followed his case. After his medical emergency that meeting had to be cancelled. The Citizen Movement Party (which had been instrumental in securing his release from prison) sent a press release stating the following statement from Mireles:

    " We thank you very much for the interest and attention you always show. Today I intended to be with you at a thank-you meal with localjournalists and correspondents. These have not been easy days, the challenge has been to stay safe and recover my health."

The press release from the Citizen Movement Party went on to say; "Sometimes one comes to think that the doctor was in a summer camp or in a place of recreation, without taking into account that during 3 years he was in a maximum security prison that, in other words, they are concentration camps, he has had 3 Infarcts, a plane crash  and 7 ambushes. With honesty and affection, we ask for your understanding, we have never thought about denying you the possibility of interviews or having close relations with you, nor do we manage your agenda, he is a free and intelligent man who is only rebuilding his life little by little.

 The doctor is immensely grateful to you journalists in Michoacan, because he knows that they contributed to his release. It's very unfortunate that he can not be with you, we hope his health will recover and soon he can give you a hug."

After 4PM on Saturday, at the request of the family, Mireles was transferred from Morelia to the National Institute of Cardiology in Mexico City, to be attended in that hospital for a cardiac arrhythmia.

The transfer by air was facilitate by an order of the Governor of Michoacan, Silvano Aureoles.  The government of Michoacán expressed its support for the ex-spokesman for Auto Defense Groups and reported that the Governor attended the request of his family to be transferred.

Mireles lawyer, Ignacio Mendoza, said that the state of Mireles is stable, but delicate and will be attended by specialists.

  After almost three years in prison, the ex-defense leader was released on May 12 from the Tepic prison number one and returned to Michoacán, where he has been recovering his health. 

Saturday, May 27, 2017

Nine of the Most Wanted Criminals in Mexico are Women

Translated by Yaqui for Borderland Beat from Debate

 Crimes against health, organized crime, trafficking in children and money laundering are some of the crimes for which the Office of the Attorney General of the Republic includes in its list of the most sought after these nine women.

According to what is published by ADN40, the PGR offers a reward of up to 15 million pesos to those who provide information to help with their capture.

Three of these women are linked to a casino fire in the city of Monterrey, where 52 people died, including a pregnant woman, published ADN40.

Mayra Elizabeth and "La Kitty" are accused of participating in a fire at a casino in Monterrey allegedly burned by Los Zetas, in addition to these two women, also mentioned for the alleged participation in the event is "La Beba", a member of the Restored Christian Church , She and her husband are also accused of mistreatment, abuse and child abuse.
La Beba. Foto: Prensa Center

Kenya Rocío Priego Alarcón and her husband Juan Carlos Trufino Diaz are also wanted by the Mexican Public Prosecutor's Office for the crime of child trafficking. At the end of 2008, it was reported that dozens of children had disappeared from a shelter named Casitas del Sur . At the time Priego Alarcón and Tufiño Díaz were accused of hiding one of the lost children from the shelter.

Kenia. Foto: Prensa Center

Friday, May 26, 2017

"Mini Lic's" Right Hand Man "Moreno 14" Detained in Eldorado, Sinaloa

Translated by Yaqui for Borderland Beat from El Debate

El Debate May 25, 2017

The subject, known as "Moreno 14" was detained by federal forces in Eldorado, Sinaloa

Pedro Alfonso N, alias "Moreno 14",  a main operator of Dámaso López Serrano, "El Mini Lic", was arrested in Eldorado, Sinaloa, by federal forces.
During a search carried out by elements of the Criminal Investigation Agency (AIC),  the Attorney General's Office (PGR), and Special Forces of the Ministry of National Defense (Sedena), "Moreno 14" was arrested and a 66 year old man was released after being kidnapped in April.

Pedro Alfonso is identified as the leader of a cell of the Sinaloa Cartel that operates in Eldorado and is in charge of the security of criminal operations, and manages a network of hit men.
"Moreno 14's" network reported the presence of security officials and members of rival groups, which allowed the cell to take evasion actions. The detainee coordinated the safety for "El Mini Lic" while he was in the Eldorado area. He is the son of  Dámaso López Nunez "El Licenciado," who was arrested earlier this 
month in Mexico City.

"El Licenciado"
                                   "El Licenciado and "El Mini Lic" 

During the search, four men and one woman were arrested; two long and one short firearms were secured, along with three vehicles, one of which had been reported as robbed, two kilos of crystal, 250 grams of cocaine, two digital scales and cash.

The short gun which was secured had the engraved initials: FED (Special Forces of Dámaso) and "Commander Moreno 14", property belonging to Pedro Alfonso Domínguez Ramírez.

Los Tigres del Norte fined 500,000 pesos (US $27,000) for performing a song glofying a drug traffiker.

Posted by DD republished from Mexico News Daily

 One of Mexico’s best known bands found itself on the wrong side of the law in Chihuahua last weekend for performing a song glamorizing the life of the narco.

“Many want to climb to my height, I just see them fall away, they want to scratch at my crown, those that try have been dying off.”

The words form part of a song by Los Tigres del Norte, arguably the originators of the narcocorrido sub-genre of northern Mexican music, called norteño.
Narcocorridos, or narco ballads, contain lyrics glamorizing narco life but the municipality of Chihuahua is having none of it.
Los Tigres performed the song, called Jefe de Jefes, or Chief of Chiefs, at the Santa Rita Fair in Chihuahua on Sunday before a devoted audience that sang along. But local authorities were 
not entertained.

The municipality fined the band 500,000 pesos (US $27,000) and shut down the stage for the duration of the fair.

US Treasury Dept Includes Ruelas Torres Cartel on Blacklist

Posted by Yaqui for Borderland Beat
Republished from DEA Press Release

Operation Dirty Dope

Contact: DEA Public Affairs

Major Mexican Heroin Trafficking Organization Targeted
Action Targets Ruelas Torres DTO, a Major Heroin Producer, Distributor

MAY 24 (WASHINGTON) – The U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) today identified the Ruelas Torres Drug Trafficking Organization (Ruelas Torres DTO) and its leader, Mexican national Jose Luis Ruelas Torres, as Significant Foreign Narcotics Traffickers pursuant to the Foreign Narcotics Kingpin Designation Act (Kingpin Act). The Ruelas Torres DTO is a family-based, independent opium and heroin production and distribution organization that smuggles multi-kilogram heroin quantities into the United States.
OFAC also designated 10 key Ruelas Torres DTO associates as Specially Designated Narcotics Traffickers pursuant to the Kingpin Act for their role in the organization. As a result of today’s action, all assets of those designated that are based in the United States or that are in the control of U.S. persons are frozen, and U.S. persons are generally prohibited from engaging in transactions with them.

“The joint efforts of the Drug Enforcement Administration and OFAC represent a sustained initiative to combat foreign drug trafficking organizations, or those acting on behalf of them, from doing business via the United States,” said Barbara Roach, DEA Special Agent-in-Charge of the Denver Field Division. “Such sanctions serve as one of the most important and multi-faceted avenues with which U.S. law enforcement can effectively and efficiently disrupt and dismantle major international drug trafficking organizations and anyone doing business with them.”

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Mexico’s Drug War Diary

A blog: The Circular

Mexico’s drug war diary:

by Conor Fay

     Then I read some of the posts, Borderland Beat is something of a pinboard or a newspaper scrapbook, anonymous writers contribute the content, excerpts from a drug war which rages on in Mexico.

Ciudad Juarez, Mexico’s violent hive. Photo Credit- Scazon (Flickr)

     That anonymity is what makes Borderland Beat so arresting, its contributors are talking about the kingpins of Mexico’s multi-billion dollar drug industry.
     These are men who don’t have limits, murder is not a consideration for them but a gut reaction. Exposing them online without the barrier of anonymity could mean death for the writers, death has been doled out to thousands in the region for far less.
     The evidence is splattered all over the walls of the website, you could pick a page at random and you’ll see some post with a *WARNING EXTREME FOOTAGE*. That post could feature pictures of a gang member shot to bits, or a school teacher with her head cut off or a whole excruciating video of a poor soul being beaten to death with baseball bats in a torture room.

     Like the crack cocaine pedalled by these gangs, the effect of Borderland Beat is scarily addictive. The blunt depiction of graphic violence draws you in but you’re eventually hooked by the stories.

     They tell the tale of Mexico’s slow death. Border cities like Juarez were the first to go, thousands die there now each year directly as a result of the gang violence, some hope exists there now. They tell the tale of the brave who try to sever the limbs of the gangs, that seems an impossibility though.

     Right now the tireless resistor of the Cartels, Doctor Mireles lies in a hospital with heart arrhythmia, under the current corrupt administration he is being refused treatment. That corruption is endemic, it’s what makes the situation so frustrating from an outsider’s point of view and so demoralising from that of the Mexicans. Mireles spoke about the lack of treatment last week- [Update: Released]
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.
  The media have largely failed also, and those who have tried were swatted away. In 1996 Gary Webb published a series of articles, “Dark Alliance”, criticising the CIA for their role in the drug crisis with Mexico. He was immediately labelled a fraud and was vilified by all mainstream American media outlets, culminating in Webb’s own suicide.

The US-Mexico Border. Photo Credit- josie (Flickr)

     Borderland Beat rises above this, it feels like something more than news, it is a diary. The contributors cannot be attacked because they are many and they are largely anonymous, or because they do not fear it.
    While the stories of mass grave discoveries and corrupt officials are endless, the fact that the locals continue to publish en masse documentation of their collapsed country and the bandits who rule it offers some respite. These people are defying the torturers, they just need an audience.

Borderland Beat Joins Other Journalist in Mourning and Remembering the Man, Javier Valdez

Posted by DD
This is a long story but as Javier said once about publishing  "the problem is not deciding what to publish, but what not to publish".  He was talking about corruption and violence stories.  In this story the problem is there is so much material about Javier and his murder that it is difficult to decide what not to publish (simply for lack of space.)  One example is a true story about police corruption that he wrote for his column "Malayerba"(bad weed)  in RIODOCE titled The Enemy" that you can read here.  It is a great example of how he humanizes stories.

In Memory of The Brave Journalist Murdered So Far This Year in Mexico  For Telling The Truth

A few hours after his murder on Monday, May 15 Borderland Beat published a story about the killing of Javier Valdez, reporter, columnist, co-founder of the newspaper and website RIODOCE. 

 We knew him as a good reporter whose stories tended to humanize the drug war, violence, and corruption taking place in Mexico. 

You could almost feel the pain of the people who suffered through this hell that was happening in Sinaloa.  His stories focused on the people and how the corruption and violence affected their lives rather than just numbers and statistics.  Javier Valdez's style of writing reminded me of the renowned author, reporter and essayist Charles Bowden.

RIODOCE became one of our most reliable sources for news stories over the past few years.  It did not accept advertising money from the government (probably the only one in the state that didn't) and that independence along with a few intrepid reporters dedicated to printing the Truth made it unique.  

In the story we posted on the day of death there was not a lot of facts about the murder.  Not much has changed in that regard, but this story is not so much about the crime as it is about the man, Javier Valdez.  Hopefully we can give you other memories of the man other than a body laying in the middle of the street with his trademark straw hat still on his head, his body riddled with 12 bullet holes, including one bullet hole in the palm of each hand and one in the forehead.  
            (Some colleagues think the shots in the palms and
            forehead was symbolic and was  showing "these hands 
            and head will never do another story") 

 Javier Valdez continued his fight to bring the truth and educate the public up almost up until the time of his death.  You could say he died fighting - with the weapon he had, journalism.  

Before he pulled out in the street leaving his office that Monday morning (Offices of RIODOCE are in a quiet residential neighborhood.)  he had just filed what turned out to be his last story.
It was about a teacher protest and the states lack of protection for the teachers.  Six teachers have been murdered in the state this year.  

He had also just done a TV interview via Skype with a morning show called 
“El Almohadazo,”.  In the interview his conversation with the  presenter, Fernanda Tapia,  dealt  dealt with issues pertaining to Mexico’s decade-old drug war, in which at least a hundred and seventy-five thousand people have died and another twenty-eight thousand have disappeared.  

On the show, Valdez, wearing his trademark Panama hat and thick-framed glasses, told Tapia that he believed Mexico’s narco gangland had become an inextricable part of Mexico’s political and economic life. “Politicians no longer have to go to the narcos to seek their backing,” he said. “Nowadays the narcos are the ones who create the politicians from the start, and then nurture and promote them; we can speak of a narcopolitics present in almost all the political parties.” The government boasted of its success in arresting the drug capos, he went on, and while it was true that there were powerful and dangerous capos, there were also “other capos, who were untouched and untouchable, operating within the banking system and in the top rungs of the business world.” He concluded, “The money is key. Until we ‘follow the money,’ as the gringos say, we’ll never fully understand, from a serious and more complete perspective, what’s going on with the drug problem in this country.”

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

San Diego: Former CBP sentencing highlights corruption, disgrace in border agencies

Former CMP agent sentenced to 5 years

In the latest in yet another San Diego ICE/CBP/HSI scandal, Jose Luis Cota has been sentenced to 5 years imprison, after a guilty plea earlier this year, where he admitted to three counts of bringing in immigrants for financial gain, and one count of bribery to a public official.  Cota was charged  last year in a smuggling scheme where he received cash payments and sexual favors for facilitating the smuggling of immigrants across the San Ysidro border, where he worked for years. 

The immigrants were driven by a husband and wife team, Gilberto Aguilar-Martinez, 32, and his wife Miriam Juarez-Herrera, who scouted and trafficked the immigrants, who were charged up to 15,000 a piece.  The conspiracy unraveled last fall, and is alleged to have been ongoing for a year at least. Juarez-Herrera admitted to providing sexual favors to Cota, with whom she had some form of bizarre relationship, referring to him as a "pendejo" according to the criminal complaint. 

Jose Luis Cota
The sordid, low level conspiracy, involving the trafficking of humans, and several betrayals of human decency, as well as sworn durty is the latest in a myriad of federal and state prosecutions of former agents of US Customs and Border Protection, ICE, and Homeland Security Investigations.  In some ways it's easy to understand.  These agencies were formed after 9/11, under George W. Bush's presidency, the nation was gripped by fears of terrorists pouring in through the southwest border. 

The agencies were filled with people who were under vetted, and have led to corruption throughout the southwest, including San Diego, Texas, Arizona, and New Mexico.  Cota, a 15 year veteran, fits perfectly in this analysis.  Blue collar men who sold themselves for the trinkets of a slightly upper middle class is what lies behind many of the cases, Cota's included.  

A weekend in Vegas, a new truck, gaudy jewels and plastic surgery for their aging wifes and younger girlfriends, Jet-Ski's and remodels to their mid level planned community homes in Chula Vista.  The comforts of a middle class existence, a few beers after work with the guys, customized truck.  Cheap people who sold themselves cheaper.  Cota forfeited two vehicles, and 63,000 in cash derived from the scheme.

Lorne "Hammer" Jones
Lorne "Hammer" Jones, an officer since 1994 was sentenced to 7.5 years in 2014, after being convicted at trial.  Jones, facilitated the importation of large marijuana loads from Arellano-Felix cells, driven through in tractor trailers.  Jones spent much of the alleged 500,000 he received over the years to engage in the same lifestyle detailed above.  Fishing boats and Chargers season tickets, trips to Las Vegas, heavy gambling.   For his part, Jones says he was unfairly prosecuted, and prosectors used criminal informants to build their case.  He was released last year, after serving about half of his sentence, which was slashed by a judge.  In his 50, his former life has been wiped away. 

A criminal complaint filed late last year detailed the FBI's arrest of Noe Lopez, a ten year veteran of the CBP, again, falling in the time frame above.  An informant working with the FBI's Border Corruption task force contacted Lopez, and Lopez agreed, and volunteered to assist in bringing kilos of cocaine and meth across the border.  His price was 500 for once kilo of meth, 1,000 per kilo of cocaine.

Noe Lopez
Backpacks would be left at pre arranged locations along Lopez's route, he would take the backpacks and drop them off to the informant.  Lopez, in furtherance of the conspiracy purchased bags at Wal-Mart, and retrieved a backpack the next day, which he believed to contain 6 kilos of meth, for which he was to be paid 500 per kilo.  The next run, was 7 kilos, and he was arrested as he made the exchange.  His case is pending, though a guilty plea is no doubt imminent. 

The case of Tyrone Cedric Duren, and his wife, Jennifer Lynn Duren, currently pending is a fascinating look inside corruption, detailed in the criminals complaint filed against Duren, and subsequent indictment.  Duren, using his position on  the Bulk Cash Smuggling Task Force, with multiple state and federal agencies involved, stole 400,000 in drug proceeds from two couriers near the San Ysidro border.  

Duren, used intel derived from informants, wiretaps, shared intelligence, to steal the money, hidden in a stash spot in the courier's car.  He used the money to purchase a home, tried to launder the money internationally, and locally, at one point walking to the branch across from his task forces' office, with 70k in a backpack, which he used as the down payment on a home. Duren's story is detailed here:

Besides the for profit schemes, there is a more sordid, darker, sexual side to the corruption lurking inside these agents, and agencies.  Sex has leverage or payment is common in cases of abuse of authority, but these cases went further, exploitation of children, co-workers, authority, providing minors with drugs in cheap hotel rooms, hidden cameras, and hard drives with hundreds of pictures. 

Part 2 coming. 

Sources: US Attorneys Office, San Diego Union Tribune, SD City Beat

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

"La Hamburguesa" Arrested: One of the 122 most wanted list.

Published by DD Republished  from El Universal.

By Astrid Sanchez

"La Hamburguesa"

After a 5 hour confrontation with between members of the Gulf Cartel the leader of the plaza in Zacatecas, Jose Antonio N, aka "La Hamburguesa", was finally apprehended  by agents of the Ministry of defense (SEDENA) and the Criminal Investigation Agency (AIC) of the Attorney General's Office (PGR).

Jose Antonio N. is considered one of the 122 Top Priority Objectives of the Federal Government listed at the beginning of President Enrique Pena Nieto's administration.

"La Hamburguesa" was apprehended along with two alleged accomplices;  Armando N, aka  "El Huevotes" and Ernesto N., aka "Don Garras" who served as escort.

Jose Antonio N. is regarded as one of the main generators of violence in Zacatecas and several executions and abductions in the region are attributed to him.

"La Hamburguesa" became leader and coordinator of a Gulf Cartel cell in the municipality of Mier, Tamaulipas, a position he gained after the the death of his superiors. 

Jose Antonio N. has three arrest warrants for the crimes of injuries, homicide and organized crime in it's modality of terrorism. 

With this apprehension, 107 objectives have been detained so far.

Monday, May 22, 2017

Weekend Blockades Paralize Michoacán After Arrest of Los Viagras

Translated by Yaqui for Borderland Beat

Burning trucks on Highway Siglo XXI
Francisco Castellanos J for Proceso
May 19, 2017

Michoacan lived through its second consecutive day of blockades and dozens of burning vehicles by Organized Crime cells operating in the Tierra Caliente region, Bajio and Zona Occidente of the state; which paralyzed traffic and caused great fear and panic among its citizens in five of thestates municipalities.

Sirens of Firemen, Civil Protection units, State and Federal Police forces were heard everywhere.  Businesses were closed and Public Transportation services suspended: bus and taxi transport and roads were all closed down. Bus service resumed 18 hours later.

Smoke from delivery trucks burning at city entrances was seen everywhere; schools of all educational levels canceled classes, which caused more fear and panic for parents as they came immediately to pick up their children.

The Ministry of Public security (SSP) intensified surveillance operations throughout the state's road network, with special attention in Tierra Caliente, to inhibit the blockades and the burning of vehicles that were being carried out in retaliation after the arrest of 22 suspected members of Los Viagras last Thursday, May 18.

Eighteen high caliber arms,"for the exclusive use of the Mexican Army", were secured along with tactical equipment and ammunition. Countless vehicles were stranded and/or abandoned along the highway.

The Authorities near Gambara, in the Municipality of Mujica, were fired upon during the altercation and subsequent arrest of the Los Viagras members and several were wounded.

Attorney Jose Martin Godoy said that one of the arrested was Gonzalo Verduzco Plancarte, "El Sema", a native of La Huacana, who has been identified as the alleged leader of the detained criminal group. "El Sema" is also said to be the right arm of Ignacio Renteria Andrade, "El Cenizo".

"He is the person identified as the one who led these criminal actions", Godoy stated.

On the instructions of the Secretary of Public Safety, Juan Bernardo Corona Martinez, the personnel of the Michoacan State Police installed revision points in Antunez, Cenidor,  El Letrero, Lombardy, as well as Highway XXI at the exit towards the port city of Lazaro Cadenas; additionally in Santa casilda, Taretan, San Angel Zurumucapio, Zirahuen, San Pedro Barajas, las Canas, Barrio Chino and Infiernillo.

Police officers then moved to the Apatzingan-Buena Vista Highway to remove two vehicles that were set ablaze, one belonging to the Freightliner Company, and a Nissan truck of the Caja Seca transport line. The area was immediately cordoned off and secured to avoid harassment by civilians.

In Paracuaran, members of the Michoacan police removed three vehicles which were completely incinerated at access entry points to a gas station on Franco Rodriguez St. in the Municipality.

In Jacona, there was a report of a person on a motorcycle setting fire to a Ford Ranger truck, who fled the scene and a search operation immediately intensified to locate him.

The Ministry of Public Security indicated that it will now maintain surveillance operations on a permanent basis throughout the State of Michoacan's roads.

The detained suspected narco-trafficking criminals were brought before the Specialized High Impact Crime Dept.,which has begun an investigative report on the aggression towards the security agents and will present it to the PGR in relation to the crime of violation of the Federal Law of Firearms and Explosives.

Saturday, May 20, 2017

Journalist and owner of 4TV channel kidnapped in Michoacán

Posted by DD from material at Debate

Dove hunting season (which is the first legal hunting season of the year) in Mexico doesn't start until August 21 but it almost seems that some people in the country can't wait for legal hunting season to begin.  They are hunting journalist.  
It is almost incomprehensible that only 3 days after the murder of Javier Valdez  in Culiacan, Guerrero and the uproar that arose after his killing,  Salvador Adame Pardo, a journalist and owner of the 4TV channel in the municipality of Francisco J. Múgica, Michoacán , was kidnapped Thursday at about 19:00 hours in the Nueva Italia community, Michoacán.   Six journalist have already been killed this year Mexico, family and friends of Adame are hoping he does not become number 7.  

 A group of armed and masked men detained Adame Thursday evening at a water purification plant and took him away by force in a black van towards Nuevo Corondiro.   There are still no clues as to the whereabouts of the Michoacán television broadcaster.   

Friday, May 19, 2017

Gunmen Rob Busload of Federal Police Officers in Mexico

Posted by DD republished from New York Times

MEXICO CITY — Authorities in Mexico say gunmen have assaulted and robbed a bus full of federal police.

The National Security Commission reports that the bus was carrying 29 unarmed officers dressed in civilian clothes Monday night to Mexico City, where they were to be on leave after 25 straight days on duty in the Pacific resort city of Acapulco.

The commission says the driver pulled over to check a mechanical problem near a toll booth in the state of Morelos. Armed men then boarded the bus, threatened him and the passengers and relieved them of their possessions.

A statement late Thursday says the officers did not resist in order to avoid injuries or loss of life. Authorities are searching for the robbers.

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Soldiers ask to return to barracks, they are tired of capturing criminals that are later set free

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

Subject Matter: Impunity
Recommendation: No prior subject matter knowledge required

Reporter: Juan Alberto Cedillo
Soldiers deployed to Tamaulipas sent a letter that manifests their desire to return to barracks because "we are fed up of the fight against sicarios".

In the last few days has emerged a scandal that involves the armed forces in the field of human rights, signalled a missive that circulated in social networks, and detailed that the military are tired of this narco war in which they capture criminals, who are short time later set free, " because the authorities are not doing their job".

"We are tired of seeing our colleagues ambushed in a cowardly way and that no authority, organization or government department or human rights do anything about it".

El Sonrics of Los Zetas was killed in 2010 , now turns up alive and shot

Translated by Otis B Fly-Wheel for Borderland Beat from an ElNorte article

Subject Matter: Miguel Abrego, El Sonrics
Recommendation: see link to article on his previous death

Reporter: Hector Castro
The shootout that occurred yesterday in the Cumbres Elite Colonia left an unusual casualty, it was reported that among the two injured was a man that in 2010 was reported killed by the army.

Miguel Abrego Nava, 42 years old, alias "El Sonrics", identified previously as a cell leader of Los Zetas in the south of the State.

Even though military sources signalled that on the 14th of August of 2010 that Abrego, who was one of the jefes that had the nickname "El Sonrics" had been killed with another three jefes in the Caracol Colonia, his name was included yesterday on the list of wounded in Cumbres.

The Narco-State

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

Subject Matter: Narco Corruption
Recommendation: No prior subject matter knowledge required

Reporter: Jose Gil Olmos
It has been three decades, starting from Salinas to be more precise, in Mexico that the gestation occurred as what we know today as the Narco-State. In this form of Government, organized crime and authorities have merged into one with the deadly consequences we now face; journalists executed, thousands of deaths and disappearances, rampant violence, delinquent Governors, covert parties, participant society, impunity, and a President of the complicit in acquiescence or direct participation.

i am starting from the fact that, from the Salinas Government, this form of co-government began to take shape due to the case of this brother Raul Salinas, who was accused of using the Conasupo networks for drug distribution, although he was jailed for other crimes.

But before this government had already presented some symptoms of overlap between authorities and drug trafficking, as was evident at the ranch "El Bufalo" in Chihuahua. Nevertheless, in Salinas term the signs of the Narco-State were seen.

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

At Least a Hundred Armed Men Assault Journalists in Guerrero

Translated by Yaqui for Borderland Beat from La Jornada

Seven Journalists were stripped of their equipment, money and a vehicle as they attempted to cover the events over the weekend in San Miguel Totolapan, Guerrero.

Seven local, national and international media journalists were intercepted yesterday afternoon at a checkpoint on the Iguala-Ciudad Altamirano road, at the height of this municipality, in northern Guerrero, by some 100 armed and hooded civilians. They were beaten and stripped of their work equipment and belongings. The gunmen threatened to burn their equipment and vehicles if they did not cooperate. They were later transported to Iguala for medical attention by a patrol of Federal Forces.

Sergio Ocampo, correspondent of La Jornada in Guerrero; Jair Cabrera, graphic reporter and collaborator of this publishing house; Hans Máximo Musielik, of Vice News; Pablo Pérez García, of Hispano Post; Jorge Martinez, of the agency Quadratín; Angel Galeana, from Imagen TV, and Alejandro Ortiz, from Bajo Palabra newspaper, were held for 15 minutes by visibly drugged subjects.

The gunmen, allegedly belonging to the criminal organization La Familia Michoacana, stripped reporters of their belongings, computer equipment, photo and video cameras, cell phones, cash, and a Jeep Patriot owned by Sergio Ocampo, together valued at about one million pesos.

Hans Máximo was quoted as saying that one of the armed civilians, stabbed him with a pistol in his head, and warned him: "If we see that you stop at the checkpoint and say what happened to you we are going to eat you alive. We have our hawks watching.

Approximately one kilometer away, the Mexican Army had a revision checkpoint before entering the Tierra Caliente region of Guerrero.

The group of journalists had moved to the area yesterday to cover the events that took place since Friday in the municipality of San Miguel Totolapan, where military and state forces took control of security.

Hundreds of people, led by members of the Movement for Peace, tried to block the Military's entrance to their community by setting up some barricades. Following the arrival of soldiers and state agents in at least seven of the nine municipalities that make up the Tierra Caliente region, there were reports of at least 14 road blocks, several made by transporters and 20 vehicles set on fire.