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

Monday, August 8, 2022

Two Administrators Of Tijuana News & Memes Facebook Page Killed

By "El Huaso" for Borderland Beat

Two founders of Tijuana664Oficial, a popular Tijuana meme and news Facebook page, were killed by gunmen at their home in north east Tijuana on the night of August 6. Their Facebook page posted about local news, including organized crime in the region.

The events occurred outside of their home on 1 de Mayo street in Cañón El Rubí neighborhood of northeast Tijuana. The victims have been identified by local authorities as Sergio “N” y Mario “N”, 40 and 43 years old respectively.

The vast majority of the posts on Tijuana664Oficial are local memes and jokes, but a look at current posts shows there is also reporting and discussion of local crime. It is possible that the two administrators were targeted because of posts related to local criminals. The Facebook page has 17,000 followers. 

Since the killings, other administrators have deleted a large number of posts from the account, presumably posts related to local organized crime. An administrator also posted a statement, informing the members of the deaths and apologizing to anyone who was offended by posts. The message said "our intention never was to offend or make fun of anyone, however the founding administrators decided the posts, now this page will change to offer what it originally did, news and good and important things of Tijuana, we ask pardon if anyone felt offended by previous posts".

Facebook group administrators and journalists face similar threats in Mexico, but can have a adversarial relationship, notes The San Diego Union Tribune. While journalists often attach their name and fact check their work, Facebook groups such as Tijuana664 are more liberal with their posts, sometimes causing controversy and confusion with rumors and accusations. Their posts can attract the attention of criminals.

Sources: The San Diego Union Tribune, Excelsior, Tijuana664 Facebook page

Rafael Caro Quintero Now Has Private Lawyers; Will Seek To Avoid Extradition

"Sol Prendido" for Borderland Beat

Caro Quintero told the judge that he wanted his case to be in the hands of private lawyers and not a representative of the Federal Institute of Public Defense.

A judge had initially appointed Caro Quintero a public defender.

Drug trafficker Rafael Caro Quintero already has private lawyers, who from now on will be in charge of the legal strategy to try to prevent his client from being extradited to the United States.

For this reason, Abigail Ocampo Álvarez, First District Judge in Amparo Matters and Federal Trials in the State of Mexico, revoked the appointment of the public defender that had been assigned to the founder of the Guadalajara cartel, a criminal group headed by Miguel Ángel Félix Gallardo, The Boss of Bosses.

Caro Quintero told the judge that he wanted his case to be in the hands of private lawyers and not a representative of the Federal Institute of Public Defenders (IFDP).

Faced with such a request, Ocampo Álvarez revoked the federal public defense and accepted the appointment of private defenders.

In this regard, the IFDP explained that the judge had initially appointed a public defender for Caro Quintero, because at the time of admitting the demand for guarantees, the capo had not appointed a lawyer.

The drug trafficker has a flat suspension that currently prevents his delivery to the United States.

The Attorney General's Office (FGR) has already filed a complaint to review the resolution issued by Abigail Ocampo Álvarez, First District Judge for Amparo and Federal Trials in the State of Mexico, who confirmed the suspension outright granted to the capo by a Jalisco judge.

In July, Francisco Reséndiz Neri, Judge of the Seventh District of Amparo in Criminal Matters in Jalisco, granted the precautionary measure to Caro Quintero, which to this day prevents the federal government from deporting or expelling him from the country, without first facing a extradition trial.

Ciudad Madero, Tamaulipas: The Authorities Are Investigating A Daylight Homicide

"Sol Prendido" for Borderland Beat

The State Prosecutor's Office (RJE) of Tamaulipas, is investigating the murder of a man, that occurred yesterday afternoon on the outskirts of a bar from the Ciudad Madero area.

Last night, the death of a victim surfaced, who received several gunshots when he left a bar located on Francisco Sarabia Street.

The events occurred at 6 in the afternoon yesterday Sunday on Francisco Sarabia street, at the corner of Rivas Guillén, in front of the Burgundy Bar.

According to unofficial versions, the victim was on the street facing a person with a weapon who shot him several times, the assailant then escaped aboard a car.

So far the Prosecutor's Office has not officially informed about the specifics of these facts, but details about the death of this person surfaced, the case went from that of injuries to an actual homicide. 

Reporte Noreste

Clan Del Golfo, ELN & Los Rastrojos Look for Peace Talks with New Colombian President

"Socalj" for Borderland Beat

Several armed groups, including drug cartels, offered to enter into peace talks with the new regime of former guerilla-turned-President Gustavo Petro.

Structures of Organized Armed Groups "GAO" spoke on the day of the passing of command from the current former president of the Republic, Iván Duque Márquez, to the current Colombian president Gustavo Petro Urrego. The GAOs indicated that they are willing to enter into dialogue with the new government and carry out a ceasefire. The Clan del Golfo, Los Rastrojos Costeños, and the ELN are willing to submit to justice in the government of Colombia.

“The war on drugs strengthens the mafias and weakens the States”, thus began Gustavo Petro, President of Colombia, in his speech about one of the most important issues for the country and that generates controversy.

Clan del Golfo also known as the Gaitanisa Self-Defense Forces have become Colombia's largest cartel after refusing to demobilize.

Clan del Golfo

The Organized Armed Group -GAO- Clan del Golfo, or Gaitanista Self-Defense Forces of Colombia -AGC-, decreed a cessation of hostilities and announced its decision through a statement:

"At last the outgoing regime of President Duque ends, which is representative of all the things that must change in a country to achieve the elusive peace," the AGC statement begins.

They added that: “ Consistent with these historical dates, we also decree a unilateral cessation of offensive hostilities, as an expression of goodwill with the initiating government and its broad willingness to search for paths of peace for all the actors in the conflict, as of 7 August. On August 7, which we hope will be the beginning of a different era for our troubled homeland, we will lift all the extreme measures that we have had to execute, as we already announced in a statement in the previous days ”.

Finally, they indicated that they have the best will to join the exploratory peace talks that Gustavo Petro has announced since the moment of his election: "We believe that it is the best decision for the forgotten Colombia that we represent," they emphasized.

The Urabeños, also known as the Gulf Clan (Clan del Golfo) and the Gaitanist Self-Defense Forces of Colombia (Autodefensas Gaitanistas de Colombia – AGC), emerged from the ashes of Colombia’s paramilitary movement to become the dominant criminal force in Colombia, with a reach that spread across the country. However, under pressure from authorities, the hold that leadership has over local cells that form this national network is getting weaker, and the group stands on the precipice of splintering into independent factions.

After its leader's extradition to the US, the Clan del Golfo unleashed a wave of violence and placed bounties on killing police officers before calling for peace.

After the extradition of its main leader, Dairo Antonio Úsuga David, alias Otoniel to the United States, the group unleashed a wave of violence and a 'Pistol Plan' against policemen killing 38 before calling a ceasefire after being urged by its leader from US prison and Petro taking office. The pistol plan is a criminal strategy pioneered by Pablo Escobar to put pressure on the State that consists of the systematic and unsuspecting murder of members of the Public Force, which has left more than a dozen soldiers dead in recent weeks. As part of the group's murder campaign, the Urabeños are purportedly offering between $1,000 and $4,000 for each police officer killed (approximately 4.5 to 18 million Colombian pesos).

According to the Peace & Reconciliation Foundation (Pares), during just six days of armed strikes, there were 145 damages in nine departments, especially in the Caribbean and the Northwest, which included 22 murders, four roadblocks, and three armed confrontations.

In his message, the former head of the Clan del Golfo extended "a call to the Gaitanista Self-Defense Forces of Colombia (AGC) to cease all activities against the Colombian Public Force." In addition, he recommended to those who were previously his subordinates to cease the armed strikes in their areas of influence, "because the civilian population is being harmed." Finally, Otoniel extended an invitation to the incoming national government, headed by left-wing politician Gustavo Petro, to "seek a peace agreement that all Colombians yearn for."

Los Rastrojos traces its roots as an armed wing of the Norte del Valle cartel that broke off from the Cali Cartel.

Los Rastrojos

Los Rastrojos Costeños joined the desire for a ceasefire, dialogue and peace of the Organized Armed Groups of Colombia, through a statement they indicated that they are willing to start talks with the new Government of Gustavo Petro.

The statement was issued by Víctor Carlos Pérez de Alba war front, who reported that from that moment the Rastrojos Costeños would stop all military action against the national government and the civilian population, where their organization is located in the departments of Atlántico, Bolivar, Magdalena, Cesar, Santander, and Valle del Cauca.

"From the inauguration of President Gustavo Petro, cessation of military hostilities for the commitment of a Colombia in peace and national reconciliation and in favor of a negotiation with the government; We join the commitment made by the guerrillas and the Clan del Golfo to cease military operations. We know that this government is going to guarantee us the fulfillment of our rights, not like the outgoing government in search of results dedicated itself to looking for our members in order to assassinate them without guaranteeing their capture with due process as established by law. . Mr. President Gustavo Petro from this moment we remain available to sit down to sign total peace,” they indicated from the war front.

Los Rastrojos is a Colombian criminal group with influence in Norte de Santander, the border department between Colombia and Venezuela. While they were once considered to be the largest criminal organization in Colombia, they are now a small group with a limited territorial presence.

The group emerged out of the once powerful Cartel Norte del Valle as one of its armed wings. Los Rastrojos held power over large territories of Colombia until their main leaders all either surrendered or were captured. The group has since managed to remain in power in a small border area, while larger criminal organizations seek to expel them from the territory once and for all.

The National Liberation Army is a true guerilla group that has increased its trafficking, kidnapping, and extortion activities to fund itself.


There are some lights on the possible negotiation with the National Liberation Army -ELN- in the Government of the Historical Pact. Gustavo Petro, weeks before his inauguration, indicated that there is already a place to start talks with the ELN, in which the talks between former President Santos and the FARC took place: Havana.

“Cuba did not do so well because then they took it as an excuse for a diplomatic offensive against that country. We have spoken with the Cuban ambassador present here for the restart of the suspended diplomatic protocol, which allows the continuity of the ELN dialogues in that country. The Cuban government will be the one to decide if it wants to remain as host, and the Norwegian government will decide if it wants to maintain its role as guarantor, which it was, that can be opened up to other countries, Spain has expressed provisions around helping in the peace process Colombia and now in the Republic of Chile and undoubtedly all of Latin America because in the end achieving success in substantially reducing violence in Colombia, which today is increasingly complex, is also an American success,” Gustavo Petro explained extensively.

The ELN is the last real guerrilla force in Latin America and has transitioned into a real transnational threat in Colombia and Venezuela. Initially a Marxist-Leninist nationalist movement, it now appears more focused on kidnapping, extortion, and attacks on economic infrastructure. And while it eschewed drug trafficking for decades, it has recently been linked to the narcotics trade and has sought alliances with large drug trafficking organizations.

President Gustavo Petro is a former M-19 guerilla.

Path to Peace Proposed by Petro

Gustavo Petro made it clear that it is necessary to propose a policy of pacification, indicating in the same way that it is a difficult but necessary path since it offers another scenario, another way of understanding and overcoming drug trafficking:

“The path is to propose a policy of pacification head-on, it is difficult, but it must be proposed because it means seeing in a different way. It is another way of understanding drug trafficking and it is another way of overcoming drug trafficking. From here I tell you to suspend death, the path is life, ”Gustavo Petro declared and sent a forceful message to the Clan del Golfo.

A few weeks ago, the current president of Colombia was asked if he would initiate negotiations with the GAO Clan del Golfo. He stated that there is no rapprochement with the Organized Armed Group and explained that the contact must be judicial, not through the authorities. of the national government, because this would not be appropriate, since it is not a political negotiation.

“It is justice that has to connect the possibility of submitting to dignified justice. Dignity has to do with the truth, it has to do with reparation for the victims, it has to do with the areas of action being prosperous, and it has to do with the existence of even the possibilities of legal benefits as long as there is no repetition, that there be compensation for the victims,” Petro emphasized.

Petro's Speech in the Fight Against Drugs

In his inaugural speech, Gustavo Petro referred to the fight against drugs, explaining that the war against drugs has failed, weakening the States and strengthening the mafias:

“Peace is possible if you change, for example, the policy against drugs, for example, seen as a war for a policy of strong prevention of consumption in developed societies. It is time for a new International Convention that accepts that the war against drugs has failed, that it has left a million Latin Americans murdered during these 40 years, and that it leaves 70,000 North Americans [100,000] dead by overdoses yearly. That the war on drugs strengthened the mafias and weakened the States. That the war on drugs has led the States to commit crimes and has evaporated the horizon of democracy,” he declared from the Plaza de Bolívar.

The recent history of Colombia has been marked by drug trafficking, even certain cracks in the state permeated by the criminal and criminal structure have been glimpsed, there are even those who speak and attribute the category of Narco-state to Colombia. 

The arrival of the Government of Gustavo Petro implies that the contradictions and relations between the establishment and the Organized Armed Groups dedicated to Drug Trafficking deepen for this reason and in this scenario, it is important for the illegal groups to make decisions at a moment that allows them a submission to justice under certain premises and guarantees that can be provided by the incoming government.

He specified that in the binding regional dialogues he summons all unarmed people to find the paths of the territory that allow coexistence. “It doesn't matter what conflicts there are. It is precisely about evidencing them through the word, of trying their solutions through reason. It is more democracy, more participation that I propose to end the violence”, he noted.

Given this, he said that he calls on the armed forces to lay down their weapons in the shadows of the past and to accept legal benefits in exchange for peace, in exchange for the definitive non-repetition of violence, and to work as owners of a prosperous but legal economy that put an end to the backwardness of the regions.

"For peace to be possible in Colombia, we need to dialogue, dialogue a lot, understand each other, seek common paths, produce changes," he added. He argued that peace is possible if, for example, the policy against drugs is changed, since it is seen as a war for a policy of strong consumption prevention in developed societies.

More Details About The Killing of The New Deputy in Culiacán By The Sinaloa Cartel

"HEARST" for Borderland Beat

As reported yesterday by SoCalJ, a few hours after Culiacán Municipal Police announced the name of their new Deputy Director, he was assassinated. Newly released details about how the attack occurred raise further questions about what's going on in Culiacán.

Warning: Very graphic photos below this point.

New Details - How It Happened

During the night of August 6, 2022, Juan Miguel Silva Alvarado, the new Deputy Director led a series of preventive patrols which were focused on bars and cantinas in the northern part of the city of Culiacán. 

National City In Final Stages Of Cannabis Permitting, Including County’s First Consumption Lounge

"Sol Prendido" for Borderland Best

A rendering of the inside of Sessions by the Bay, a proposed cannabis consumption lounge with art installations in National City.

Cannabis businesses hoping to set up shop in National City, including an applicant proposing to operate what would be the county’s first consumption lounge, are moving into the final stage of the three-part permitting process.

In April, the city received 17 applications from interested companies, 16 of which were for storefronts and manufacturing and one for a lounge. Nine of the applicants are local residents.

The city’s cannabis ordinance, approved in May 2021, allows for up to six commercial cannabis licenses, including two that must be reserved for local ownership and one set aside for a consumption lounge. Retail is only allowed in industrial zones and the lounge is in the tourist commercial zone, located west of Interstate 5.

Phase two was recently completed, where applications were scored using a merit-based system that looks at a business’s plans for labor, safety and security, location, neighborhood compatibility and investment in the community.

“It was a very competitive process, just from the scores. If we’re talking about a test, everyone got an A-plus, but how good of an A-plus they got is really the question. It was a close race,” said Pedro Garcia, the city’s economic development manager who is overseeing cannabis permitting.

The most points an applicant can receive is 3,000, though they can earn more. Scores ranged from 3,150 to 1,290, but most of them earned 2,900 points, according to the city. The top-scoring applicants were Shryne National City and Off The Charts, each of whom earned 3,150 points. Sessions by the Bay was the sole consumption lounge applicant and earned 2,900.

Those three are moving into the final round, where they will each have to provide a $5,000 deposit to receive a permit and then negotiate a development agreement with the city. Council members would then consider approval and, if granted, allow the businesses to apply for a land-use permit and business license.

Though the city has authorized six cannabis permits, staff will begin with the initial three applicants before working with the remaining three, Garcia said.

“The reason for that is most cities have cannabis departments and teams. I’m the cannabis person so I have to handle this accordingly and the consumption lounge is going to be the trickiest,” he said.

Consumption lounges are the next big thing in the legal cannabis market and they’re expected to pick up momentum, according to industry experts, but several factors have hindered their takeoff, including the pandemic and rigorous permitting procedures.

A rendering of the inside of Sessions by the Bay, a proposed cannabis consumption lounge in National City.

“I think there are probably very few businesses to get into that are as complicated as cannabis and lounges are even more complicated,” said Alex Ayon, a San Diego resident who would co-operate Sessions by the Bay with his wife Pearl Ayon. “It’s primarily because it’s a new thing … and we don’t have other places that we can look at to see what works and what doesn’t.”

Consumption lounges are tied to numerous limitations, even more so than other types of marijuana businesses, said Ayon.

“One of the primary concerns the public has is driving under the influence and that’s a very real concern that we, as business owners, take very seriously,” he said, adding that their safety plans include having patrons sign a form acknowledging the lounge’s rules and regulations, offering shuttle services and having security and a rideshare drop-off site in front of the shop.

With a high score and as the only applicant, Sessions by the Bay is off to a promising start. Ayon, who formerly owned two dispensaries in San Diego and La Mesa and operates another in Lone Pine, said he has already invested “six figures” into bringing the lounge into fruition and projects investing $4 million total.

He signed a lease for a 13,000-square-foot building near the bayfront and estimates having upwards of 100 jobs. Under National City requirements, half of Sessions’ workforce must be city residents, though he said they plan to have as much as 75 percent. They also plan to give an unspecified percentage of their profits to local youth and substance abuse programs.

The building will consist of a storefront selling a variety of cannabis products and a lounge where patrons will be able to consume items from the dispensary or from a menu within the lounge. No alcohol will be sold, as it is prohibited, and food will be sold through third-party partnerships, such as food trucks, Ayon said.

The lounge itself is envisioned to be “an immersive experience” with a heavy music and art component, he added.

His hope is to open by next summer should the business successfully complete the permitting process and receive council approval.

16 Year Old Killed In Guerrero As Extortion-Related Violence Of Chicken Sellers Continues

By "El Huaso" for Borderland Beat

This morning around 7 a.m., a 16 year old chicken salesman was shot and killed in Chilpancingo, Guerrero. This killing is likely linked to extortion by violent criminal groups in the area.

The victim has been identified as José Eduardo N. He was driving a red Nissan pickup truck on Vicente Guerrero Boulevard of Colonia López Portillo when he was shot and killed. Photos of the event show his body sitting slumped in the drivers seat, struck and killed by gunfire.

According to Quadratin Guerrero, pistol caliber casings were found at the crime scene. There are no suspects yet.

In July, Milenio reported that the spate of killings of chicken salesmen in Chilpancingo was perpetrated by organized crime groups who extort them. The murders frightened the sellers so much that for days, local market stalls were empty, and people could not purchase chicken.

While the plight of the sellers no longer reaches headlines, criminal groups continue their violent oppression.

Sources: InfSinCensuraMX Twitter, Quadratin Guerrero, Milenio

US Congress: Jalisco Cartel Now Has Presence In 28 States

"Sol Prendido" for Borderland Beat

Only four states remain free of the 'intensely expansionist' criminal organization

The Jalisco New Generation Cartel (CJNG) operates in Mexico City and 27 states, and is the dominant criminal organization in six states, according to a report by the United States Congressional Research Service (CRS).

A map published in the report shows that Sonora, Sinaloa, Durango and Tlaxcala are the only states where the CJNG doesn’t have a presence. It also shows that the CJNG is the dominant criminal force in its home state of Jalisco as well as Nayarit, Colima, Guerrero, México state and Veracruz.

Entitled “Mexico: Organized Crime and Drug Trafficking Organizations,” the report said the CJNG is an “extremely powerful cartel” with a “reputation for extreme and intimidating violence.”

The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) “considers the CJNG a top U.S. threat and Mexico’s best-armed criminal group,” the CRS said, noting that U.S. authorities have offered a US $10 million reward for information leading to the arrest of cartel leader Nemesio “El Mencho” Oseguera Cervantes, “who is believed to be hiding in the mountains of Jalisco, Michoacán, and Colima.”

A map of cartel-controlled areas and zones of conflict in Mexico, compiled by the U.S. Congressional Research Service. U.S. CRS

Informed by media reports, the CRS report acknowledged that, according to some analysts, the CJNG has drug trafficking operations throughout the Americas, Asia, and Europe.

“The CJNG built its dominance internationally first through extending its presence through a rapid expansion inside Mexico,” it said.

“In 2016, many analysts maintained the CJNG controlled a territory equivalent to almost half of Mexico. The group has battled Los Zetas and Gulf Cartel factions in Tabasco, Veracruz, and Guanajuato, as well as the Sinaloa … [Cartel] in the Baja Peninsula and Chihuahua. The CJNG’s ambitious expansion campaign was characterized by high levels of violence, particularly in Ciudad Juárez and Tijuana.”

The CRS also said that the CJNG has consolidated “important components of the global narcotics supply chain” through its battle to dominate key ports on both the Pacific and Gulf coasts.

“In particular, the CJNG maintains reported control over the ports of Veracruz, Manzanillo, and Lázaro Cárdenas, which has given the group access to precursor chemicals that flow into Mexico from China and other parts of Latin America,” the report said.

“As a result, according to some analysts, the CJNG has pursued an aggressive growth strategy underwritten by U.S. demand for Mexican methamphetamine, heroin, and fentanyl. … Despite leadership losses, the CJNG has extended its geographic reach and maintained its own cohesion while exploiting the infighting among factions of the Sinaloa organization.”

The CRS described the cartel as “intensely expansionist” and acknowledged its “willingness” to attack government officials, such as Mexico City Police Chief Omar García Harfuch.

The report also profiled eight other major Mexican criminal groups, including the Sinaloa Cartel, the Gulf Cartel and La Familia Michoacana.

A roadblock manned by armed civilians surprised a group of reporters as they followed the president through northern Sinaloa in May. Video screenshot

Once headed by imprisoned drug lord Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzmán, the Sinaloa Cartel is the “the Mexican crime organization with the largest international footprint,” CRS said. Its report cited a DEA estimate that the cartel was active in 15 of 32 Mexican entities in 2020 and noted that its leaders have successfully corrupted public officials from the local to the national level.

The report also said that many lawmakers in the current U.S. Congress are concerned about cartel-related violence in Mexico and its impact on border security.

“Some members have been evaluating the amounts and effectiveness of U.S. counternarcotics and security assistance to Mexico and assessing the overall U.S.-Mexico security relationship. Additional concerns focus on how … [cartel]-related violence has imperiled some licit economic sectors, negatively affected U.S.-Mexico trade, and contributed to the internal displacement and outmigration of Mexican citizens,” it said.

“Congress has engaged regularly with these issues, holding hearings, appropriating funds to support Mexico’s anti-crime efforts, and issuing directives and reporting requirements to U.S. agencies.”

Mexico News Daily

Uruapan, Michoacán: Early Morning Of Attacks And Clashes Leaves Four Dead

"Sol Prendido" for Borderland Best

Neighbors managed to capture on video the moments of violence in Uruapan, Michoacán, which left several dead
Unbridled violence in Michoacán

The city of Uruapan, Michoacán, was the scene this morning of attacks and clashes between criminal groups.

The balance so far is four people dead and two more injured.

Neighbors of the Tejerías neighborhood made public some of the moments in which the antagonistic groups of organized crime faced gunfire. 

The residents recorded on videos, from different points, the roars of the assault rifles used by the criminal cells.

After several minutes, the inhabitants also reported that armed individuals had set a vehicle on fire.

At the scene, the authorities located the charred bodies of two people, they are still unidentified.

The other point of that city located 110 kilometers from the Michoacan capital, armed individuals perpetrated an attack.

Witnesses point out that the armed group shot at four men who were talking on Salvador Allende street in the Jardines del Pedregal neighborhood.

At the scene, two of the victims died and the other two were seriously injured, for which they were transferred to a hospital in the region.

Uruapan is the second most violent municipality in Michoacán in terms of intentional homicides, just after the capital, Morelia.

Mayor Ignacio Campos Equihua blames the more than 15,000 avocado workers for the violence that floods the streets of his municipality.

He says that's because those farm workers "are all drug addicts."

Baja California: Several Human Remains And Ritual Site Discovered

"Sol Prendido" for Borderland Beat

The San Quintín Search collective continues to report findings

Members of the San Quintín Search Collective located a skeleton in the vicinity of the Ejido Diaz Ordaz, in Ensenada; With this discovery, there are now eleven human remains found from last May to Sunday, August 7.

The first data indicates that at 4:07 p.m. the National Guard (GN) was informed about the event in the garbage dump area.

According to the images, the activists found the remains scattered on the ground. In addition some socks, a buckle, boxers, a bottle of liquor and cloth remains. 

During a broadcast on social networks, they mentioned that they found evidence on the site that a ritual was practiced there.

Another murder in Zarahemla

After a report to C4, elements of Public Security found the body of a half-buried man in the vicinity of Ejido Zarahemla, in the municipality of San Quintín.

Information from the corporation indicates that it was at 10:31 a.m. this Sunday when the presence of a corpse with traces of violence was reported.

In both findings, the support of the State Attorney General's Office (FGE) was requested, which is responsible for initiating an investigation.

Ciudad Juárez, Chihuahua: They Find A Woman's Head Inside A Cooler

"Sol Prendido" for Borderland Beat

Apparently the head belongs to a woman whose body was located wrapped in a blanket during the early hours of this Sunday.

The head was discovered by neighbors this Sunday morning in the Eco 200 subdivision.

Inside a Unicel cooler left on the public highway, a human head was found there on Sunday morning.

Local residents from the Eco 2000 neighborhood notified the authorities when they found the head next to a public park on Tiburón and Foca streets.

The rest of the victim's body was located during the early hours of this Sunday.

Investigating agents pointed out that apparently the head belonged to a woman and could belong to one of the two bodies dumped during the early morning hours in the Misiones de Creel neighborhood.

Said cooler was placed on the street, behind a personnel transport unit, as happened in Paseos del Alba, where they left a corpse wrapped in a blanket behind a truck.

Experts were in charge of securing the evidence of the place, while the head was taken to the Forensic Medical Service along with the cooler.

It should be noted that in recent days violence has intensified mainly in the southeastern sector of the city.

With the discovery of murdered people who are disposed of wrapped in blankets or cut into pieces, in different sectors.

El Heraldo de Chihuahua

InSight Crime: Human Trafficking Victims Grow as Mexico Government Strategy Falters

Written by Parker Asmann for InSight Crime. Reposted by "El Huaso"

“Our commitment as a country should not be reduced to certain types of trafficking victims; it must turn to prevention, not only of the crime, but of its structural causes,” said Félix Santana, the technical secretary of the Intersecretarial Commission against Human Trafficking within Mexico’s Interior Ministry (Secretaría de Gobernación - SEGOB).

The announcement came on the heels of newly released data from the Executive Secretariat for Public Security (Secretariado Ejecutivo del Sistema Nacional de Seguridad Pública - SESNSP) showing Mexican authorities identified at least 494 victims of human trafficking across the country between January and June of this year.

This represented a 22 percent uptick from the 406 victims recorded during the first half of 2021. If the current trend holds, officials will see nearly 1,000 victims of human trafficking by the end of the year, the most since 2015, according to an InSight Crime analysis of SESNSP data.

However, the true number of victims far exceeds those reported. Civil society groups like Consejo Ciudadano estimate that just one of every 100 human trafficking cases in Mexico is reported. Victims may not speak out for a number of reasons, including a lack of available resources, to avoid being stigmatized, or because they have been manipulated not to see themselves as victims.

The US State Department’s 2022 Trafficking in Persons (TIP) report found that, for the eighth year in a row, the Mexican government “does not fully meet the minimum standards” to combat and eliminate human trafficking but is “making significant efforts” to do so.

Those with the highest risk of being trafficked in Mexico, according to the State Department, included unaccompanied children, Indigenous persons, asylum seekers and migrants, members of the LGBTQI+ community, and informal sector workers, among other vulnerable populations.

Rather than at the hands of Mexican organized crime groups, “the majority of trafficking cases occur among family, intimate partners, acquaintances on social media, or through employment-related traps,” the report stated.

InSight Crime Analysis

Human trafficking crimes take place all across Mexico and can transcend borders, but a number of states along the US-Mexico border have long served as human trafficking hotspots.

Through the first six months of 2022, the states of Baja California, Chihuahua, and Nuevo León accounted for one quarter (122) of all human trafficking victims identified and a little less than 25 percent (95) of the 411 investigations opened by authorities.

Over the last year and a half, these three states were also among the top 10 states where Consejo Ciudadano’s National Human Trafficking Hotline received the most calls to report human trafficking.

(Graphic courtesy of Consejo Ciudadano)

This data helps paint part of the picture. In Baja California and Chihuahua, the border cities of Tijuana and Ciudad Juárez are known hubs for sexual and labor exploitation, while the manufacturing center of Monterrey in Nuevo León is a long-time operational base for human traffickers.

Given the economic makeup and transitory nature of these cities on migratory routes traversing Mexico, internal and foreign migrants are frequently lured there and victimized. Victims are entrapped by their exploiters in a number of ways, but since the onset of COVID-19, deceptive recruitment tactics have increasingly turned to social media platforms like Facebook and WhatsApp.

Those targeted are presented with attractive job offers that pay well but lack specific details on what the job entails. Stated promises of personal and professional development act as “a mask for exploitative conditions,” according to Consejo Ciudadano. Victims may be pushed into working longer hours for less pay or forced into prostitution after accepting a job offer as a waitresses or as part of a fake modeling contract.

The most reported form of exploitation is sexual, but trafficking experts told InSight Crime that doesn’t make it the most prevalent type of trafficking. Labor exploitation in the agricultural, construction, and manufacturing industries in Mexico is also widespread, but much less reported. With a growing number of people living in poverty and other precarious conditions, there are many desperate workers vulnerable to exploitation.

Whereas predatory groups like the Zetas once operated their own prostitution rings, today human trafficking does not represent a central revenue source for Mexico's major organized crime groups. The industry is largely dominated by independent family clans that carefully select those they prey on. 

Source: InSight Crime Parker Asmann Twitter 

Sunday, August 7, 2022

Ex Cocaine Dealer Interview - Ray

"Sol Prendido" for Borderland Beat

Soft White Underbelly interview and portrait of Ray, a former cocaine dealer in Southern Florida.

soft white underbelly

“Aussie Cartel” Bikie Leader Mark Buddle Extradited to Australia

 "Socalj" for Borderland Beat

Former Comanchero bikie President Mark Buddle was arrested after years as a fugitive in Turkey for allegedly trafficking more than 160 kilos of cocaine worth $27 million USD from Hong Kong to Melbourne via Sydney in May 2021.

The 37-year-old was extradited on a chartered flight from Darwin on Friday morning." AFP officers have escorted a man, 37, on a chartered flight from Darwin to Melbourne this morning to face two charges for allegedly importing cocaine worth about A$40 million AUD," a statement said.

Buddle's extradition to Melbourne was delayed initially amid "security concerns." He faced Melbourne Magistrates Court, charged with one count of importing a commercial quantity of a border-controlled drug and one count of conspiring to import a commercial quantity of a border-controlled drug. Both offenses carry a maximum sentence of life in prison.

Buddle was arrested at Darwin airport on Wednesday after being deported from Turkey a day earlier.  'He was escorted by Turkish authorities by charter flight to Darwin where he was taken into AFP custody and arrested,' Assistant Commissioner Ryan told reporters at a press conference on Tuesday. After boarding, Buddle was shuffled down the aisle and thrust into a seat while officers watched guard from neighboring rows.

Assistant Commissioner Nigel Ryan said Buddle, who was the subject of an Interpol red notice, said Buddle touched down in Australia after Turkey made an 'independent decision' to deport him. He was charged on Thursday over allegations he imported more than 160kg of cocaine into Melbourne in May last year.

Mark Buddle became Comanchero MC National President after the arrest of the gang's previous leader.

From Bikie Boss to Cartel Fugitive

Mark Buddle became leader of the infamous outlaw Comanchero Motorcycle Club in 2009 after the former leader, Mahmoud 'Mick' Hawi, was jailed for a fatal brawl at Sydney Airport. Hawi was later shot dead outside a gym in Sydney in 2018.

Nine Australians, bikies, and middle-eastern gang members who organized themselves into a A$1.5 billion drug-running 'Aussie Cartel' were responsible for one-third of all drug importations into Australia, intelligence agencies allege. They are also allegedly demanding taxes from others importing drugs. Cocaine and meth prices are climbing because of a tax being imposed by the shadowy group known as 'The Commission' run by an exiled bikie, police claim.

The exiled leader of the Comanchero Outlaw Motorcycle gang Mark Buddle was allegedly demanding a tax of up to A$50,000 for each kilogram of illicit drugs smuggled from overseas into Sydney. NSW Police said in the last few months cocaine has jumped up by A$50 a gram to A$300 - which they suspect could be because of the bikie's tax.

He left Australia for Dubai in 2016 with his glamorous long-time girlfriend Mel Ter Wisscha and their two children. The AFP alleges Buddle moved overseas to avoid the scrutiny of Australian law enforcement. Police have said Mr. Buddle is also a person of interest in the shooting murder of a Sydney security guard in 2010.

Buddle then flew between a range of countries including Greece, Turkey, and Iraq before settling in the self-declared Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus where he received a residency permit on the grounds his 'high income' would bring wealth to the territory. He claims he paid bribes to officials in Northern Cyprus to remain there, but was still arrested in a dramatic raid. He was residing on the Mediterranean island on a tourist visa since July 7, 2021, and claims through his defense lawyer that local politicians were squeezing him for money. Buddle was arrested on July 9, 2022, Australian authorities had been working tirelessly behind the scenes to extradite Buddle from Turkey.

Buddle smiles while in custody.

Operation Gain

Assistant Commissioner Ryan said Buddle had been a target of Operation Gain, a transnational off-shore disruption task force, since March 2021. Australian investigators will allege Buddle was involved in a transnational criminal syndicate operating out of Hong Kong and Turkey, that saw 160 kilograms of cocaine imported to Melbourne but then seized by authorities.

'This is the first time the AFP has publically revealed the existence of this task force, which targets Australia’s biggest organized crime threats offshore, disrupts their criminal activities, and ultimately ensures these alleged criminals face prosecution,' he said.

'Operation Gain harnesses the AFP’s extensive international network, sophisticated capabilities, and Australian law enforcement partners, such as the Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission.' Assistant Commissioner Ryan said the AFP had strong global partnerships and recently hosted Turkish authorities in Canberra, where crucial intelligence was shared between agencies.

His extradition came months after five people were arrested in connection to the importation, which was concealed in a shipment of air filters. Those five included the alleged co-ordinator of the crime syndicate, a 42-year-old Sydney man, and four Victorians. Three Melbourne men were also remanded on allegations they played a role in the collection and distribution of the cocaine shipment.

The AFP and FBI developed an encrypted app they pushed to organized crime figures while monitoring their communications.

ANØM App Sting

The charges stem from Operation Ironside, which monitored communications shared using the ANOM app. The app was set up by authorities under the guise of offering organized crime figures a safe encrypted messaging service when in reality it was being monitored by the AFP and FBI.
AFP Assistant Commissioner Nigel Ryan said Operation Ironside had tracked encrypted communications showing cocaine would be shipped from Hong Kong to Melbourne and Sydney.

The ANØM app would be installed on mobile phones bought on the black market that was only able to send messages to other devices that had the organized crime app and stripped of other capabilities. As high-profile criminals vouched for the app’s integrity, the popularity of the rigged devices increased.

"This investigation has been going for a significant amount of time," Ryan said Buddle's "complex" arrest, Ryan said, would deal a serious blow to drug syndicates operating in Australia and offshore. More than 250 people have been charged in Australia under the operation. The Australian Federal Police say Buddle orchestrated the shipment using the app secretly monitored by their officers and the FBI in the US.

Guardia Nacional Seizes Illegally Chopped Wood In Monarch Butterfly Sanctuary, Michoacán

By "El Huaso" for Borderland Beat

The Guardia Nacional located and seized about 100 illegally chopped logs in the Monarch Butterfly Biosphere Reserve, State of Michoacán, according to a press release on August 4. Illegal logging is becoming a major criminal market in Mexico, accounting for 1/3 of wood sales in the nation according to authorities.

They discovered the site when patrolling in the town of Zitácuaro, Michoacán. 

The seizure was made by the National Guard in joint effort with the Michoacán State Police, the Environmental Protection Battalion of the National Guard, and the Federal Environmental Prosecutor (PROFEPA by its initials in Spanish). 

Upon locating the site, security forces established a perimeter and looked for the loggers, but were unable to find them.

PROFEPA is holding the logs and will undertake the investigation.

Illegal logging is an increasing problem in Mexico, often exploited by criminal groups who illegally fell trees for sale. The nation has lost about 8% of its forest cover in the last two decades, according to NGO GlobalForestWatch.

In an interview with El Financiero, the director of the National Commission of Forests (CONAFUR), León Jorge Castaños Martínez said “It is a very, very serious problem, which has been growing because there is a deficit of wood from national production".

InSight Crime has reported that CJNG, Los Correa, La Familia Michoacána, and Carteles Unidos are all involved in illegal logging in the state. 

Sources: Guardia Nacional Press Release, InSight Crime, El Financiero, Global Forest Watch