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

Monday, September 7, 2009

El Rikin In Custody

The Mexican Army has captured Jose Rodolfo Escajeda a/k/a El Rikin who is "a high-ranking member of the Juárez drug cartel" which smuggles drugs into the United States across a 120 mile stretch along the Texas border below El Paso as reported by El Paso Times:

"Soldiers found him Friday in Nuevo Casas Grandes, a community south of Juárez. Law officers allege that Escajeda is responsible for smuggling drugs into the United States for the past 10 years. He was alleged to be part of the Carrillo Fuentes drug organization, and controlled the Valle de Juárez region across the border from Fabens, Tornillo and Fort Hancock. Mexican authorities and the DEA attributed many murders, arsons and several recent beheadings to his gang."
CNN reports that El Rikin further is suspected in connection with the July slayings of U.S. citizens Benjamin LeBaron and his brother-in-law, Luis Widmar, who "were beaten and shot to death after armed men stormed into their home in the town of Galeana, Mexico":

"Local media reported in July that a note found on LeBaron indicated the slayings were in retribution for the capture of 25 drug suspects in a nearby town. The LeBaron brothers belonged to the "Community of LeBaron" in Galeana, a township founded by excommunicated Mormons. LeBaron's younger brother, Eric, was kidnapped in May and returned unharmed a week later. The incident prompted Banjamin LeBaron to become a nationally recognized anti-crime activist who moved the local community to take a stand.
El Rikin also "is suspected of involvement in the attack last week in which gunmen stormed into a drug treatment clinic, lined patients up against a wall and killed at least 17 of them" as reported by the BBC:"
The BBC's Stephen Gibbs, in Mexico, says the attack shocked even the violence-weary residents of Ciudad Juarez, where there have been an average of 10 murders every day this year. Juarez is the setting of a vicious turf war, principally between two gangs - the Juarez cartel, and the Sinaloa cartel, which is led by Mexico's most wanted man and reported billionaire, Joaquin Guzman. The gangs are fighting for control of the local drug market, and smuggling routes into the United States. About 1,400 people have died in Juarez's drug violence this year.


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