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

Thursday, September 30, 2021

High-Paid Informant Led DEA To Suburban Fentanyl Bust In Nationwide Narcotics Sting

"Sol Prendido" for Borderland Beat

It’s part of an effort targeting Mexican cartels selling counterfeit OxyContin, Xanax and other drugs that actually contain the deadly synthetic opioid, which the DEA chief called a national emergency.

Bricks of fentanyl seized Sept. 20 by the DEA in Countryside.

The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration brought out a heavy hitter — an informant paid more than $1.9 million over the past two decades for his tips — to help agents seize more than seven kilograms of deadly fentanyl from a man in the south suburbs during a nationwide narcotics sting.

Hector Bayardo’s arrest Sept. 20 in a Walmart parking lot in Countryside came after the informant brokered a deal for Bayardo to sell the drugs, a DEA agent said in a court affidavit.

The deal was for “six Tecate beers” — which was code for six kilograms of heroin, the agent wrote.

When the DEA tested the drugs, they discovered they actually had fentanyl, a synthetic opioid at least 30 times more potent than heroin, according to the affidavit.

The court filing said Bayardo told agents he was being paid $2,000 to deliver the drugs, which were to be sold for $35,000 per kilogram.

Bayardo was one of 22 people arrested in stings in the DEA’s Chicago field division, which includes Illinois, Wisconsin and Indiana. They were part of nationwide DEA operation against Mexican drug cartels that sell heroin, fentanyl and counterfeit OxyContin and Xanax pills containing fentanyl. More than 800 people were arrested nationally in the operation.

Earlier this week, the DEA launched a campaign called “One pill can kill” to warn the public of a sharp rise in the sale of such fentanyl-laced counterfeit pills, most which authorities say are manufactured by drug cartels in Mexico using chemicals shipped from China.

Between Aug. 3 and Tuesday, the DEA carried out a series of investigations targeting fentanyl trafficking operations. The DEA’s Chicago field division seized 77,000 counterfeit pills containing fentanyl in Illinois, Wisconsin and Indiana during that period, and about 4,000 of them were confiscated in the Chicago area, officials say.

More than 24 kilograms of fentanyl — including raw fentanyl and fentanyl in pill form — were seized in the three-state area, including 10.5 kilograms in the Chicago area.

About 1.8 million counterfeit pills were seized across the country along with more than 700 kilograms of fentanyl powder.

“Many of these investigations began as a result of overdose deaths,” DEA administrator Anne Milgram said at a news conference Thursday in Washington, calling the proliferation of fentanyl a “national emergency.”

Last year, more than 900 people in Chicago died of overdoses from synthetic opioids like fentanyl, according to authorities, who say an amount of the drug as small as the tip of a pen can be fatal.

Robert Bell, special agent in charge of the DEA’s Chicago field division, said in a written statement the sting “holds cartels and local drug distributors accountable for the devastation they have inflicted.”

Chicago Sun Times

Reputed Sinaloa Drug Cartel Members Set To Go On Trial Monday In El Paso

Guerrero” for Borderland Beat

Two reputed Sinaloa cartel members, including one known as the “Grim Reaper" who is accused in the abduction and murder of a groom during a Juárez wedding, are set to go on trial Monday in El Paso. 

Arturo Shows Urquidi and Mario Iglesias-Villegas are set to stand trial in the Western District of Texas at the Albert Armendariz Sr. Federal Courthouse in Downtown, according to court records.

Arturo Shows Urquidi

Jury selection will begin about 9 a.m., with opening arguments expected to begin soon after jurors have been picked.

Urquidi and Iglesias-Villegas were among 24 alleged Sinaloa cartel members indicted in 2012 over their roles in the drug organization.

Urquidi is facing five federal charges: continuing criminal enterprise; conspiracy to possess narcotics; attempt and conspiracy to import and export narcotics; laundering of monetary instruments; and conspiracy to possess firearm/drug traffickers and aiding and abetting.

Iglesias-Villegas faces 12 federal charges, including the same five charges as Urquidi.

He also faces charges of conspiracy to kill in a foreign country; kidnapping aiding and abetting, and five charges of racketeering activity involving violent crimes and aiding and abetting.

The 2012 indictments included Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman, the reputed head of the cartel, and Ismael Zambada Garcia, who allegedly took over the drug cartel after Guzman was arrested in Mexico in 2016.

Guzman was extradited to the U.S. in 2017. He went on trial in 2019 in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York.

He was convicted on several drug trafficking, weapons and operating a criminal enterprise charges. Guzman was sentenced to life in prison, plus 30 years.

Guzman’s case in the Western District of Texas remains pending, according to court records.

Zambada still is wanted by the U.S. government on several criminal charges related to the Sinaloa drug cartel.

A $15 million reward is being offered for information leading to Zambada's arrest and conviction.

Mayo Zambada Currency, Worth $20 Is Currently Circulating With A Photo Of The Sinaloa Cartel Leader

"Sol Prendido" for Borderland Beat

Here are the images of the Mayo Zambada bills that began to circulate after the United States increased the reward offered for the leader of the Sinaloa Cartel

Images of alleged bills circulate on social networks with the image of Ismael "El Mayo" Zambada, top leader of the Sinaloa Cartel (CDS).

According to reports, banknotes that, although they have no official value, have a denomination of a thousand Mexican pesos equivalent to about $200 US dollars, which have been reported in Culiacán, in the Mexican state of Sinaloa, where the Sinaloa Cartel has its main center of operations.

The dissemination of the images of the bills with the image of Mayo Zambada comes after the United States increased the reward it offers for capturing the boss.

The appearance of these banknotes comes just one year after in the homeland of drug trafficker Joaquín "el Chapo" Guzmán, former leader of the Sinaloa Cartel, 200 pesos bills began circulating (equivalent to almost $10 dollars according to the exchange rate) with the initials and a message signed in the name of the boss.

As we informed you, on the Instagram account that was presented in the name of Iván Archivaldo Guzmán Salazar, alias El Chapito, Chapo's son, a photograph was disseminated in which his father's initials were sealed on a ticket.

And it is through Instagram Stories in what is his supposed official account, @therealivanguzman, El Chapito, showed the money that on one side has the following message: "From his friend JGL", initials that refer to the full name of his father, Joaquín Guzmán Loera.

According to specialists, there are times when drug traffickers seal the money with which they pay bribes, distribute it among people of scarce resources, with whom they earn their sympathy, for their own operators or simply as a way to elevate their ego

La Opinión

Message Threatening Los Chapitos Allegedly Signed By Both Mayo Zambada & Rafael Caro Quintero In Sonora

"HEARST" for Borderland Beat

La Voz Del Pueblo has shared a message allegedly signed by both kingpins Rafael Caro Quintero and Ismael Zambada that threatens Sinaloa Cartel Los Chapitos aligned operators in the municipality of Cananea, Sonora. The message also seeks to impose a nighttime curfew on citizens living in Cananea, asking them to remain inside.

Three Ex-Military BLO Hitmen Arrested in San Pedro, Nuevo León

"HEARST" for Borderland Beat

In two operations carried out in the metropolitan municipality of San Pedro Garza García, seven men were captured in possession of marijuana, cocaine and methamphetamines

At roughly 11:00 pm at night on September 27, 2021, the State Attorney General's Office (FGE) arrested three men in flagrante delicto, or rather in the act of committing an offense, on Padre Mier Street in San Pedro Garza García, Nuevo Leon.  

State Search Commission Find New Clandestine Crematorium In Nuevo Laredo, Tamps

"Guerrero" for Borderland Beat

A recently used extermination camp was discovered near Nuevo Laredo, Tamaulipas, a city on the United States border, said the head of the National Search Commission, Karla Quintana.

The Tamaulipas Search Commission found human remains, shovels and axes near abandoned housing off kilometer-26 of the Monterrey-Nuevo Laredo highway. Quintana has since confirmed the camp was used as a clandestine crematorium for systematic murder.

The search relates to the disappearance of at least 100 people near the state border with Nuevo León, the majority of whom are thought to be truck drivers and taxi drivers. Disappearances are often related to organized crime, and Tamaulipas is home to the violent Gulf Cartel, based in Matamoros. The criminal group has long dominated criminal activity in the state and has been undergoing an internal power struggle since 2017 to control drug and human trafficking routes.

In response to the spate of disappearances, a cross-state working group was set up to enable collaboration between the Attorney General’s Offices of Nuevo León and Tamaulipas and to bring together the National Search Commission and local search commissions in Nuevo León, Coahuila, México state, Hidalgo, San Luis Potosí and Veracruz.

The first discovery came in June when Tamaulipas authorities found voter credentials, cell phones and clothing near the highway.

Quintana said that further investigation would be necessary to identify the bodies but that it was the responsibility of state authorities. “We are going to recover these human remains in a dignified manner and with due diligence … it is the state Attorney General’s Office of Tamaulipas which is responsible for the respective identification … in forensic matters,” she said.

She added that searches would continue in the area over the next few months. Search teams are supported by the National Guard, Tamaulipas police officers, Nuevo León security forces and the army.

Fifty-seven extermination sites have been found and documented in Tamaulipas by relatives of missing people, Animal Político reported.

Fifty-three of those sites have been discovered in southwestern Tamaulipas in five municipalities: Mante, Xicoténcatl, Llera de Canales, Gómez Farías and Ocampo.

The northeast has been the region of the country where the most extermination camps have been unearthed, Quintana confirmed.

Politics is a murky business in Tamaulipas. Federal authorities accuse state Governor Francisco García Cabeza de Vaca of having ties to organized crime but have been unable to take him into custody due to his immunity from prosecution in Tamaulipas.

Over the last 15 years, more than 80,000 people have disappeared in Mexico. According to a report by the federal government in April, Tamaulipas and Nuevo León are among the five states with the highest number of disappearances reported.

With reports from Milenio and Animal Político

116 Killed in Ecuador Prison Riot Between Cartel-Linked Gangs Los Lobos & Los Choneros

"Socalj" for Borderland Beat

An enormous prison riot between rival gangs in Ecuador left at least 116 people dead, including five who were decapitated, according to authorities.

A battle between gangs in a prison killed at least 116 people and injured 80 in what authorities are calling the worst penitentiary massacre in Ecuador’s history. At least five of the dead were reported beheaded, officials said Wednesday. The deadly conflict was between Los Choneros, a gang with ties to Mexico’s Sinaloa drug cartel, and Los Lobos, who are linked with Mexico’s Jalisco New Generation cartel.

President Guillermo Lasso decreed a state of emergency in Ecuador’s prison system, allowing the government to deploy the police and soldiers to penitentiaries among other powers. Authorities attributed Tuesday’s bloodshed at the Litoral penitentiary in the coastal city of Guayaquil to gangs linked to international drug cartels fighting for control of the lockup.

Lasso, visibly affected, said at a news conference that what was happening in the Guayaquil prison was “bad and sad” and he could not for the moment guarantee that authorities had regained control of the lockup. “It is regrettable that the prisons are being turned into territories for power disputes by criminal gangs,” he said, adding that he would act with “absolute firmness” to regain control of the Litoral prison and prevent the violence from spreading to other penitentiaries.

Images circulating on social media showed dozens of bodies in the prison’s Pavilions 9 and 10 and scenes that looked like battlefields. The fighting was with firearms, knives, and bombs, officials said. Earlier, regional police commander Fausto Buenaño had said that bodies were being found in the prison’s pipelines.

Outside of the Litoral Penitentiary in Guayaquil, Ecuador.

Outside the prison morgue, the relatives of inmates wept, with some describing to reporters the cruelty with which their loved ones were killed, decapitated, and dismembered. “In the history of the country, there has not been an incident similar or close to this one,” said Ledy Zúñiga, the former president of Ecuador’s National Rehabilitation Council.

Zúñiga, who was also the country’s minister of justice in 2016, said she regretted that steps had not been taken to prevent another massacre following deadly prison riots last February. Earlier, officials said the violence erupted from a dispute between the “Los Lobos” and “Los Choneros” prison gangs.

Col. Mario Pazmiño, the former director of Ecuador’s military intelligence, said the bloody fighting shows that “transnational organized crime has permeated the structure” of Ecuador’s prisons, adding that Mexico’s Sinaloa and Jalisco New Generation cartels operate through local gangs.

“They want to sow fear,” he told The Associated Press on Wednesday, urging the government to temporarily cede control of the prisons to the National Police. “The more radical and violent the way they murder,” the more they achieve their goal of control, he added.

Ecuador’s president said that care points had been set up for relatives of the inmates with food and psychological support. He added that a $24 million program to address the country’s prisons will be accelerated, starting with investments in infrastructure and technology in the Litoral prison.

The former director of Ecuador’s prison bureau, Fausto Cobo, said that inside penitentiaries authorities face a “threat with power equal to or greater than the state itself.” He said that while security forces must enter prisons with shields and unarmed, they are met by inmates with high-caliber weapons.

In July, the president decreed another state of emergency in Ecuador’s prison system following several violent episodes that resulted in more than 100 inmates being killed. Those deaths occurred in various prisons and not in a single facility like Tuesday’s massacre.

Previously, the bloodiest day occurred in February, when 79 prisoners died in simultaneous riots in three prisons in the country. On July, 22 more prisoners lost their lives in the Litoral penitentiary, while in September a penitentiary center was attacked by drones leaving no fatalities.

Wednesday, September 29, 2021

Iguala, Guerrero: Los de La Sierra Interrogation And Mass Execution of La Bandera Operatives

"Sol Prendido" for Borderland Beat

A new video from the Mexican underworld has just surfaced online. For this broadcast the interrogation and mass execution of captured enemies takes place outside in an undisclosed location somewhere in the state of Guerrero. 

The following films are extensive in length. Just as well the discovery of what lead to their demise is narrated by every captive who is questioned. 

In addition the final video concludes with 2 hitmen on the ground being dismembered. The right leg of the first captive is being removed at the knee with a 12 inch blade scythe. When he speaks he sounds like he’s sedated. There’s no indication that he’s feeling what’s happening to him. 

Captive #1:  Cousin. Cousin please forgive me. For real please forgive me. 

Captive # 2 is screaming away in horrible pain. The broadcast closes with the rest of the captives on their knees watching and waiting in the background for their turn. 

Warning: Graphic Video

Video translation is as follows:

Sicario #1: To all the citizens of Iguala. Here are all the cowards who were extorting and murdering innocent civilians and women. This is the trash that had this beautiful city terrorized. We warned everyone and now the time has come. This drug corridor already has an owner. Every operative from La Bandera hung their narco messages. 

And now look at where you sons of bitches are at now. Cachetes, you faggot. We have all of your piece of shit gunmen here. Chucho Brito, the same goes for you traitor. You son of a bitch. You already had your position at the table made beforehand. So that you could suck off Gama. As you’ve done so for most of your life. 

We extended a hand to you. And you bite the hand you piece of shit jerk off. Just as you’ve done so with others who’ve helped. You son of a bitch. Here before you are La Gente de La Sierra you cowards. And La Sierra doesn’t forgive. You will fall into formation with us. Otherwise, we will kill you off you pieces of shit. 

Sicario #2: Whats your name?

Captive #1: Juan Manuel aka El Marin.

Captive #2: Simon.

Sicario #2: Whats your name?

Captive #3: Omar Beltran Alvarez aka Mostró. 

Captive #4: Guillermo Serecen Navarro. 

Sicario #2: Speak louder!

Captive #4: Guillermo Serecen Navarro. 

Sicario #2: Who’s your boss?

Captive#4: Chucho Brito. 

Sicario #2: Whats your name?

Captive #5: Julio González Moreno aka El Camaleón sir. 

Sicario #2: Here’s that son of a bitch Randy!

Captive #6: Ignacio Jose Cerrano aka El Rafi. 

Sicario #2: And who’s your boss?

Captive #6: Chucho Brito. 

Captive #7: Sergio Ramirez Carreto aka El Tarro. My boss is Chucho Brito. 

Captive #8: Giovani Ravaran Ramirez. My boss is Chucho Brito. 

Captive #9: Luis Adan aka El W. 

Captive #10: Aldo Lopez aka Casarubias. I belong to the Garrafos. My boss is Chucho Brito. 

Captive #11: Uval Tavares Perez aka Bubalin. 

Captive #12: Andres Rodriguez Sanchez. My boss is Chucho Brito. 

Sicario #2: You just all fucked yourselves you sons of bitches. 

(Sicario #2 moves back towards the beginning of line to continue his interrogation. The actual questioning begins several males away from first captive)

Sicario #2: What does your boss Chucho Brito specialize in?

Captive #3: He has a direct connect with City Hall. 

Sicario #2: Speak louder!

Captive #3 He has a direct connect with City Hall. 

Sicario #2: What does he specialize in?

Captive #3: He’s the one who takes the money out of the construction sites. 

Sicario #2: What does Chucho Brito specialize in?

Captive #5: He works with City Hall to collect as much money as he can. 

Sicario #2 What does your boss specialize in?

Captive #6: He would take all the money he could from City Hall. 

Sicario #2: And just what position did you guys hold?

Captive #3: I would prepare drugs

Sicario #2: And you?

Captive #1: I would also prepare drugs. 

Sicario #2: And you?

Captive #2: I was a hitman. 

Sicario #2: Speak louder!

Captive #2: I was a hitman. 

Sicario #2: And you?

Captive #4: I was a sica (hitman). 

Sicario #2: Speak louder!

Captive #4: I was a sica sir. 

Sicario #2: And you what did you specialize in?

Captive #5: Hitman. 

Captive #6: Hitman. 

Sicario #2: And you?

Captive #7: I would sneak things into the Cereso prison. 

Sicario #2:Speak louder!

Captive #7: I would sneak things into the Cereso prison. 

Sicario #2: Which things exactly would you sneak in?

Captive #7: Marijuana, cocaine, and beer. 

Sicario #2: And you?

Captive #8: Hitman. 

Sicario #2: Speak louder!

Captive #8 Hitman. 

Captive #9: I collected protection fees. 

Sicario #2: And you?

Captive #10: I would clean for them?

Sicario #2: Speak louder!

Captive #10: I would clean for them. 

Sicario #2: And just what would you clean for them?

Captive #10: I would service their aircrafts. 

Captive #11: I would prepare cocaine for them. 

Sicario #2: Wicho, where exactly were you in charge of?

Wicho: In the towns of Tepecua (Tepecuacuilco de Trujano) and Huitzico. 

Sicario #2: Where else?

Wicho: (Unintelligible). 

Sicario #2: How many men do you have there?

Wicho: 19. 

Sicario #2: And you Fersi. Lift up your face bro. 

Fersi: I was in charge in Iguala. I was the boss for the hitmen. 

Sicario #2: Which homicides did you participate in?

Fersi: I was involved in homicides. And more as well. 

Sicario #2: Which ones exactly?

Fersi: I was involved in…in every one that has ever taken place. 

Sicario #2: Who did you hand over those women to have killed?

Fersi: I handed them over to Wicho. 

Sicario #2: Where did this take place.

Fersi: It happened at La Morenita. 

Sicario #2: On whose orders?

Fersi: On Colin’s and Chucho Brito’s orders. 

Sicario #2: And why did this take place?

Fersi: Because they were ratting us out. 

Sicario #2: How many women have been killed?

Fersi: Just one. 

Sicario #2: And what happened to the rest?

Fersi: I handed them over to Colin and La Beba. 

Sicario #1: Citizens of Iguala. Here’s all the trashy individuals who were extorting, thieving, and killing innocent civilians. They all fucked themselves in the end. Long live the Gente de La Sierra you sons of bitches. This plaza already has an owner. 

Sicarios in unison scream: Long live!

Muerte X Glorious Dead 69

Columbus, Ohio: Documents Allege Columbus Police Officers Dealt Drugs, Accepted Bribes To Provide Cover From Other Law Enforcement

"Sol Prendido" for Borderland Beat

John Kotchkoski and Marco R. Merino were arrested Tuesday night and now face federal bribery and drug charges.

The criminal complaint filed against two Columbus police officers reads like a Hollywood script – two police officers, tasked with removing drugs from the street, are accused of dealing them and accepting bribes in exchange for promising the safe passage of illicit drugs through Ohio.

But the FBI alleges this isn’t fiction – it’s a reality for Columbus police officers John Kotchkoski and Marco R. Merino, who were arrested Tuesday night and now face federal bribery and drug charges.

Through a combination of cell phone data, confidential sources, undercover FBI agents and recorded conversations, the FBI alleges in its criminal complaint that Merino and Kotchkoski were involved in an illegal drug trafficking operation that involved the two selling drugs like fentanyl and cocaine and promising an unnamed person (who was working as a cooperating witness with the FBI) that they could use their law enforcement databases to provide safe cover for the person to traffic drugs from Dayton to West Virginia.

The two officers ended being netted in an FBI sting after agreeing to transport drugs from Dayton to West Virginia. The feds say “the transportation of cocaine was a fabrication as part of the law enforcement operation.”

But court records show the two officers agreed to provide safe harbor for what they thought would be the transportation of drugs.

The criminal complaint alleges that Merino met with the person – who turned out to be FBI’s cooperating witness – in August 2020.

During that meeting, federal investigators allege that Merino gave the confidential informant cocaine and fentanyl and that Merino repeatedly accepted “thousands of dollars in exchange for protection and safe transport…”

Between August 2020 and September 2021, several meetings took place between Merino, the confidential informant, and in some cases, undercover FBI agents.

During those meetings – some of which took place in Dayton and Wheeling, West Virginia, the feds allege that Merino accepted cash, asked a confidential informant to sell drugs for him and told an undercover FBI agent that he was “law enforcement” and would be able to assist “in trafficking narcotics in and through Columbus.”

Merino further explained, the feds allege, that he would use law enforcement databases to stay informed on if law enforcement were going to interfere with a drug transaction and would be able to distract and dissuade other law enforcement agencies from interfering or investigating activities he was aware of or involved with. 

During some of these meetings during the summer of 2021, the FBI alleges that Merino accepted payments in exchange for providing safe transport.

During one of these transports on Aug. 13, cell phone data showed that Merino and Kotchkoski were near the same vicinity on Interstate 70. Cell phone location data also placed the two officers near each other on Aug. 28, and they were spotted by FBI undercover agents meeting near E. Main Street and 3Rd Street.

The criminal complaint alleges that the cooperating witness for the FBI once worked as a confidential informant for Kotchkoski but that his law enforcement duties morphed into “illegal drug trafficking.”

Upon being questioned, Merino confessed his role to the FBI – telling them that he and Kotchkoski had discussed the drug trafficking relationship Merino had with two people – who turned out to be undercover FBI agents.

Merino said that Kotchkoski had known that Merino was unlawfully protecting the transport of cocaine and had agreed to assist, according to the criminal complaint.

As he explained it, Kotchkoski made himself available by radio to make calls that Merino might need, “including to other law enforcement officials in order to protect the safe transportation of cocaine.” 

Merino told the FBI he paid Kotchkoski half of the money he received when he provided protection to transports from Dayton to West Virginia.

On Tuesday, Merino placed a call to Kotchkoski with the FBI’s knowledge of the call. Merino told Kotchkoski that he couldn’t sell all the fentanyl and offered to return the unsold portion. 

According to the court records, Kotchkoski became irritated and told Merino “it doesn’t work that way” and alleged that Kotchkoski said that if Merino ever spoke about any illegal act between him and Merino that he would have Merino’s wife and children killed by “sicarios” – or Mexican hitmen.

The FBI also alleges that Merino had planned to develop a drug enterprise with the cooperating witness and that he planned to gain Mexican citizenship and buy up real estate as a cover to launder money from drug activity, telling the cooperating witness that “no one would know for a long time and that they would live in peace.”

Kotchkoski was being held in the Delaware County Jail. He’s expected to have an initial appearance Wednesday afternoon in federal court in Columbus at 1:30 p.m. An initial appearance for Merino was expected later.

Columbus Police Chief Elaine Bryant was not made available for an interview, which was requested by 10 Investigates.

Instead, her office released this statement:

“These allegations are beyond disturbing. If proven, such actions would violate the oath our officers take, the standards we must hold ourselves to, and the trust of the public. 

These officers have been relieved of duty pending the outcome of their criminal cases. We have, and will continue to, work cooperatively with federal authorities. 

Because this is an ongoing investigation, I cannot comment further on these cases.

This alleged conduct does not reflect the values of this division, or the excellent work being done by its employees.

I will say it again: when my officers do what’s right, I will always have their back. When they don’t, they will be held accountable.”

Columbus Mayor Andrew Ginther released this statement:

“I am flat out angry. The allegations are disturbing and represent a complete breach of trust. It undermines our efforts to rebuild community-police relations at a time when we need to come together to make our neighborhoods safer. 

The selfish actions of these officers jeopardized the safety of their fellow officers and the community. We will hold these officers accountable, check the abuse of power and remain steadfast in our work to reform policing in Columbus.”


Chihuahua: In The Claws Of Fear...

"Sol Prendido" for Borderland Beat

Governor Maru Campos' phone Is hacked and it’s realized that they have her well monitored. This is scary. Organized crime has absolute control of the country and shows it off. Governor Maru Campos' cell phone was hacked and calls were sent from her number to ask for money.

The Governor launched an alert on Facebook so that citizens should ignore the messages. Beyond the robbery, the worrying thing is that the governor is spied on and her movements are being followed by the underworld as is the case with all Chihuahua citizens. 

She will surely change her phone number, but the number will remain monitored as are all citizens.

La Polaka

Fresnillo, Zacatecas: Authorities Discover Dismembered Human Remains Inside Coolers

"Sol Prendido" for Borderland Beat

In two almost simultaneous events, two coolers were located with allegedly human remains and written messages alluding to organized crime.

The first finding was at 9:30 p.m. on Tuesday; neighbors of the Arboledas neighborhood reported the cooler on the side of Plateros Avenue, in the direction of the town of the same name.

At that place, between Los Manzanos and Los Limones Street, the authorities of the three levels of government appeared halfway through the street, the cooler was wrapped in a black bag and next to the container a message written on a cardboard.

The area was cordoned off and monitored by the Municipal, State Preventive and Metropolitan Police, who deployed an operation in at least two blocks to protect the area from the discovery.

An hour later, at the corner of Niño Artillero Street and Monumento a la Bandera of the Industrial Colony, the second cooler with human remains was located.

To that place, which is located just behind the Monumento a la Bandera, near a vacant lot was the second container, guarded by law enforcement officials.

In both places, Investigation Police officers arrived to learn and begin police action and then order the presence of forensic personnel.

Unofficially it was said that inside the first cooler was a human head and in the second the rest of the body, of which at the moment the identity is unknown as well as the victims sex. 

Experts from the Zacatecan Institute of Forensic Sciences (IZCF) arrived to lift the containers and take them to the procedure room where the report will be issued and possibly the identification of the body.

NTR Zacatecas

Cuernavaca, Morelos: Journalist Manuel González Reyes Executed; 47 Reporters Have Been Killed In AMLO's Government

"Sol Prendido" for Borderland Beat

Manuel González Reyes, owner and reporter of the PM Morelos news agency, was shot dead, around 4:37 p.m. on Tuesday, September 28, while he had finished eating at a post installed in front of a minibus terminal, in the Miraval neighborhood, next to the Pullman de Morelos bus line, in the municipality of Cuernavaca.

Witnesses to the crime, quoted by local media, indicated that the reporter had just eaten when he got up from his seat to allegedly answer a phone call, and at that moment a motorcycle arrived at the scene with two subjects on board, dressed in black, who shot him in the face, with 9 mm caliber weapons.

González Reyes, 55 years old, lay next to a Volkswagen car, black, on De la Estación street that connects Plan de Ayala Avenue, one of the busiest in the capital of Morelen, with Leandro Valle Street, in the Miraval neighborhood.

Elements of the State Public Security Commission (CES) and the Red Cross attended the place, who confirmed that there was a lifeless subject. Meanwhile, elements of the Coordinated Command made tours of the area.

At the scene, at least two nine-millimeter caliber shells were found, which were collected as evidence of the crime by experts from the Attorney General's Office (FGE), who took charge of the case.

"He had injuries caused by a firearm near the cephalic limb [...] At the moment there is no information that refers to the number of people involved in the aggression, and at least one person would have used a firearm at a short distance against him to immediately flee apparently to Colonia Patios de la Estación," the FGE detailed.

The last broadcast that González Reyes made live was this same, prior to his murder, from the Vista Hermosa neighborhood of Jiutepec, to denounce the absence of authorities in support of the families that were affected by the tearing down of a hill.

"The support of deputies, local, federal, senators and the Governor and other municipal presidents who also live on our taxes is nowhere to be seen here," González Reyes concluded his connection via Facebook Live, on the PM Noticias page.

This agency was created by González Reyes in January 2017. Before that, the reporter covered press conferences, demonstrations and citizen protests independently. Also, during the last electoral process, he participated as a candidate of the recently created Citizen Welfare Party (BC), for the Municipal Presidency of Emiliano Zapata, where the journalist lived.


In July 2019, the lifeless body of journalist Rogelio Barragán Pérez, director of the Guerrero “Al Instante” news portal, was located in the municipality of Zacatepec, with traces of handcuffed torture and gunshot wounds. The reporter's body was inside his Volkswagen Jetta, with Guerrero state license plates.

Two years earlier, in April 2017, journalist Filiberto Álvarez Landeros was shot dead in the municipality of Tlaquiltenango, south of the same entity. Research indicated that the communicator was walking to his private home, after concluding his radio program, where he read poems.

In May 2012, veteran journalist René Orta Salgado, a red note reporter in Sol de Cuernavaca, of the Mexican Editorial Organization (OEM), was found dead inside his vehicle. His relatives had reported him missing four days earlier, after holding a meeting with several men in a bar in the Morelos capital. 


On August 31, President Andrés Manuel López Obrador said in a spot published on his Twitter account, that so far in his government no journalist has been persecuted or censored. However, so far in the Administration headed by the Tabasco politician, since December 2018 to date, a total of 46 communicators have been killed.

The Ministry of the Interior (SEGOB) released, on July 13, data from the Protection Mechanism for Human Rights Defenders and Journalists, which counted the homicides of 43 communicators. But to these are added four more after that date.

Likewise, Article 19, a non-governmental organization that defends freedom of expression and the right to information, denounced that during the first half of this year, 362 attacks occurred against journalists and the media, with which 1,663 attacks have been registered so far in the Government of Andrés Manuel López Obrador (609 in the first year and 692 in the second), which indicates that "violence against the press still shows no sign of reversing itself.

According to the report 'First semester of 2021: violence against the press prevails, as does the inaction of the State', released on August 24, the NGO highlighted that "every 12 hours a person or a half is attacked in Mexico," and that the 362 attacks recorded reveal "a sustained growth in levels of violence."

However, in a video released prior to his Third Government Report, the national president indicated that even now "the president is even insulted but there is no repression" against the press. "There are no more moches because now the budget is going to the people but there are freedoms. The right to disagree, deeds, not words is guaranteed," he said in the spot.

Zeta Tijuana

Ex-Drug Lords Unite Against Harassment in Maximum Security Prison

"Guerrero" for Borderland Beat

All three cartel members are serving sentences in Altiplano prison in Mexico state. The three men claim they have undergone "psychological torture"

The jailed former leaders of three drug cartels have shown their diplomatic side, coming together to make a joint complaint about their prison conditions.

The three men allege harassment and psychological torture by prison staff at the Altiplano maximum-security prison in México state.

The complainants are Servando Gómez Martínez, the former leader of the Knights Templar cartel in Michoacán; Mario Cárdenas Guillén, who led the Gulf Cartel in Tamaulipas; and Fernando Sánchez Arellano, the former leader of the Tijuana Cartel in Baja California.

The Attorney General's Office requested that the judge who accepted the lawsuit dismiss the case but the request was turned down. 

The three complainants have been provided by a public defense lawyer to argue their case.

The complaint was also signed by a string of other convicted cartel personnel, including former members of the Sinaloa Cartel and the former head of Los Zetas, which previously waged a civil war against the Gulf Cartel.

Cárdenas, recognized by the aliases “M-1” and “El Gordo,” served a first stint in prison from 1995 to 2007 and was released upon finishing his sentence.

He was arrested a second time in 2012 and given 20 years.

Gómez, also known as “La Tuta,” was arrested in 2015 and charged for organized crime, kidnapping, and drug trafficking offenses. In 2019, he was sentenced to 55 years in jail for the kidnapping of a businessman in 2011.

He faked a heart attack to enable Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzmán’s second prison escape in 2015.

Sánchez, also known as “The Engineer,” was arrested in 2014. News website Infobae reported last year that the only standing charge against him was for money laundering.

With reports from Milenio

US Border Patrol Detains 14 Mexican Soldiers Who Crossed Into US

"Guerrero" for Borderland Beat

Fourteen Mexican soldiers were detained by U.S. officials for several hours early on Saturday after they entered U.S. territory at El Paso, Texas, across the border from Ciudad Juárez, Chihuahua.

The soldiers, who crossed the bridge between the cities in two military vehicles, said they didn’t realize they had entered the United States.

The newspaper El Heraldo Chihuahua reported they were from southern Mexico and had only recently arrived at the northern border.

Border agents secured weapons and equipment for “safety and processing,” said U.S. Customs and Border Patrol (CBP), adding that Mexican military leadership was contacted and arrived shortly after.

Thirteen of the soldiers were processed without incident, but one was given a civil penalty after CBP officers discovered a small quantity of marijuana in his possession.

The soldiers appeared to have been handcuffed according to Reuters. Their vehicles and weapons were returned to them when they were released.

The border crossing was closed for about two hours due to the incident, a witness said.

One witness, who asked not to be named, described the tense moments when border officials stopped the soldiers. “The CBP yelled at the soldiers to put their hands up and drop their weapons immediately.”

Involuntary border crossings by Mexican military forces have occurred in the past, the newspaper El Universal reported, but usually in areas where the border is not clearly marked, rather than on international bridges.

With reports from ReutersEl Heraldo Chihuahua and El Universal

Tuesday, September 28, 2021

This Is The Biggest Fear That Marked "Chapo" Guzmán Since Childhood, Revealed The Criminologist Who Analyzed Him.

"Sol Prendido" for Borderland Beat

Monica Ramírez Cano, was in charge of studying the mind of the leader of the international Sinaloa cartel, in addition to confessing his greatest addiction and other secrets of his life The capture of Joaquín "El Chapo" Guzmán, was one of the great captures at the hands of the Navy

With hundreds of direct deaths (in executions) and indirect deaths (from drug use) attributed to Joaquín "El Chapo" Guzmán Loera, it may be thought that the narco leader of the international Sinaloa cartel was not afraid of anything, however the drug lord was deeply afraid of an incident in childhood that he could never forget.

"'Joaquín, what are you afraid of?', I asked 'Chapo' Guzmán while he ate inside the space that was suited for our interviews. I was drinking water and we were relaxed," revealed criminologist Monica Ramírez Cano, who was able to carry out an in-depth analysis of his behavior when he was imprisoned in Mexico.

"You know that I fear very little, but what does scare me is the darkness," Joaquín "El Chapo" Guzmán Loera then responded to Ramírez Cano in one of the interviews she did in 2016, during which time she made his criminal profile at the Maximum Security Prison of La Palma, in the State of Mexico.

"Let me tell you that when I was little, we had to go out to the bathroom and go through the backyard that on one side had a fountain and one day when I left in the morning, I could no longer stand it, at that moment, something very heavy fell at the fountain and I came out as fast as bullet, it caused such a noise that one of my brothers also woke up from the scare," he revealed to the surprise of the lawyer.

And he continued his episode: "Man, listen, we were so scared, me more, that I could never go through that yard alone."

Ramírez Cano sat for hours, before he was extradited to the United States in January 2017, in front of one of the best-known drug traffickers worldwide. El Chapo, initially in the Altiplano, in the State of Mexico, and then in Ciudad Juárez, revealed his most intimate secrets.

"He is a respectful person, takes great care of his ways, cordial, kind, very reserved, but when you establish confidence you can talk to him in an extraordinary way, which allows you to know how his mind operates," explained the criminologist.

She assured that Chapo, in his mind, is an "entrepreneur" who found an area of opportunity through illegality, and although he proved very talented for illicit businesses, his "IQ is normal."

Unlike other drug lords who tend to further personalize the exercise of crime, such as El Z-40 that commits heinous acts of violence, Guzmán Loera is an old-school boss who respects a mans word.

El Chapo considers, according to his talks, that the worst crime that exists is kidnapping, and about drug trafficking he believes that people use drugs because they choose to do so. He has a phrase that he always uses: "The facts are what’s recommend to you."

In addition to being addicted to women, before the specialist he admitted to having 23 recognized children, he also has a marked narcissism.

"He is not a psychopath. He has psychopathic traits and narcissistic traits that are reflected in a need for admiration, to feel unique and special," Ramírez said, adding that he is always proud to say that he got up at 05:00 each morning to go to the plantations and laboratories to organize his people and how his day wouldn’t end until 11:00 p.m. or 00:00.

"What he has is a very important strategic capacity. He knows who to put in the right place, who to remove and how to move his pieces, like in a chess game," he said.

The criminal psychologist already knew his story and that was not what interested her: how was it that the son of peasants from the Sierra de Sinaloa, rejected by his father, built the most powerful drug empire in history. She goes for the details in the talks. Those keys that filter from conversations and reveal who is behind the myth.

Inside his head is the entire recent history of drug trafficking in Mexico, told firsthand by its main protagonists. By alleged corrupt officials and rival bosses, Ramírez Cano has been threatened since she joined the federal government during Enrique Peña Nieto's administration in 2012.

Her life has always been surrounded by crime: she was born in the violent state of Chihuahua, which began to fragment in the mid-1990s with the deaths of Ciudad Juárez. Afterwards, Ramírez Cano was kidnapped by a criminal organization that sought to extort money from her father. When she was released, she escaped to Spain.

"What are your addictions?" is one of the questions that criminologist Monica Ramírez Cano asked Joaquín el Chapo Guzmán Loera, founder of the Sinaloa Cartel, in 2016. "None, my only addiction are women," replied the boss.

The criminologist interviewed him to create the profile of one of the most famous and ruthless drug traffickers of all time. He is not the only one: she has also been in front of murderers such as Mataviejitas, Mochaorejas, Zeta 40, and many more.

In September, Ramírez Cano posted a five-second video on her Twitter account where you can see her, wearing a white shirt and a red vest, just one meter from Chapo, dressed in his prison uniform.

Monica Ramírez Cano has classified information related to national and international security.

She studied Psychology and then specialized in Criminology, Criminological Profiles, Serial Violence, Juvenile Delinquency and Applied Psychology. For her, the word fear does not exist: every day represents the possibility of talking to one of the most dangerous criminals in the whole country.

"If I had the fear of ordinary people who are not involved in this, I could not sit in front of people who have committed very serious crimes and who have left a very deep wound in our society," she said in an interview with Infobae Mexico.

Among other drug traffickers whom she has interviewed, in addition to Chapo and Miguel Ángel Treviño Morales, Z-40, former leader of the Los Zetas cartel, are Servando Gómez Martínez, La Tuta, leader of Los Caballeros Templarios, and Dámaso López Núnez, El Licenciado, of the Sinaloa Cartel, as well as dozens of serial killers.


United Cartels Narco-Summit Held, Supposedly Under Protection of the National Guard

"Socalj" for Borderland Beat


At the meeting held last Sunday, September 12, it was concluded that the United Cartels already had all the necessary resources, both financial and human, to confront the organization of Nemesio Oseguera Cervantes, alias El Mencho. To fund this, cooperation quota taxes were raised on local residents.

The leaders of some of the main organizations that make up the Cárteles Unidos council in Michoacán recently held a narco-summit to reconfigure the war strategy against the Jalisco Nueva Generación Cartel (CJNG). According to journalist Óscar Balderas, who reported on the meeting for the MVS Noticias program with Luis Cárdenas, the meeting held last Sunday, September 12, it was concluded that the United Cartels already had all the necessary resources, both financial and human, to face the organization of Nemesio Oseguera Cervantes, alias El Mencho.

The meeting, planned two months in advance, had mainly 4 guests: Juan José Álvarez Farías "El Abuelo", leader of the Tepalcatepec Cartel; Alejandro Sepúlveda Álvarez, alias El Jando or la Fresa , leader of the Trojan Whites/Blancos de Troya; César Sepúlveda Arellano, "El Boto" leader of Los Viagras; and one of the Sierra Santa Ana brothers.

That day they got together for breakfast at 11:00 a.m. at a ranch located on Luis Orozco Street, 20 minutes from the Cenobio Moreno market, in Apatzingán, strategically located on a rural road to flee with a 10-minute advantage in case of emergency. The capos arrived unarmed, but with escorts.

The pact resulted in two main agreements: the first was that they were going to raise the cooperation quota for the people of the towns of Apatzingán, Tepalcatepec, and Buenavista so that they would finance the war against the Jalisco. Presumably, the people of Tierra Caliente began to be charged from that day up to 3,000 pesos per house a fortnight to finance the war.

In case they are unable or unwilling to pay, the United Cartels would persecute them as if they were allies of the CJNG: they beat them, kidnapped them, tortured them, and disappeared them. The second agreement consisted of a kind of single formation to attack together, in a decisive manner, with common weapons and common human resources, the hosts of Oseguera Cervantes. 

This second agreement already had its first reaction as reported by Borderland Beat; from Tuesday to Thursday of last week, 48 hours of shootings were recorded. Sources consulted by the journalist warned that the CJNG responded to the summit of its enemies by getting into various communities on the border between Jalisco and Michoacán. Officially it was reported that there were five deaths, although unofficially there was talk of a higher number.

According to Balderas, a version confirmed that the National Guard (GN) had knowledge of this summit, which was not only held with their permission but also under their protection. Supposedly, there were even GN trucks that were parked on the roads near the Cenobio Moreno market to allow the four Michoacan capos to enter. The official version of the GN assured that they found out about the summit within 24 hours, mainly due to the complaints of the residents about the increase in rates.

The Tepalcatepec Cartel, which is presented to the media as a group of self-defense groups, forms the council of the United Cartels together with Los Viagras, Trojan Whites, remnants of the Knights Templar, as well as other cells that operate in the so-called Tierra Caliente region of Michoacan.

Those local factions have prevailed for decades in the state, migrating from one criminal group to another and fragmenting into regional associations as their leaders were captured or killed. Some groups, such as those led by Abuelo Farías, collaborated with the CJNG in the past, but breakdowns and alleged internal betrayals unleashed a wave of violence in municipalities such as Aguililla, Coalcomán, Buenavista, and the current siege in Tepalcatepec.

Source Infobae

Sinaloa Cartel Gente Nueva del Tigre Second-in-Command Arrested in Chihuahua

"HEARST" for Borderland Beat

The second in command of the Sinaloa Cartel group known as Gente Nueva del Tigre, Jesús Omar Cortés Gutiérrez, alias "La Changa", was arrested after a violent shootout in Chihuahua with the State Investigations Agency (AEI) members, which left one of the AEI so badly injured that he was airlifted out for medical treatment. 

Now a judge has approved that La Changa will be held in jail until his trial, a positive step in the journey towards convicting and sending La Changa to prison.