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

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Beltran Leyva Cartel Attempts To Restructure Organization

Let me preface this by saying this is a translated article. The author is anonymous but perhaps that is the new face of journalism in Mexico. Although it has referred to a SEDANA report, I admit it gives limited sources to back up its claim. This article has appeared reprinted several times on various sites and I felt the content gives clues as to what lead up to the fracturing of the Beltran Leyva organization. Editorial or factual story, take it for what it is. I tried to stick with the subject of the Beltran's for the translation. Full Article available below.


The Arrest of El Grande may have resulted in an agreement between the remnants of the Beltran Leyvas, the Juarez and Gulf cartels. Although the incident made an impact on the financial structure as it has also had an impacted their leaders, sicarios and operators (high level distributors). However, the fall of El Grande won't affect the cartel of the Beltran Leyva brothers much or lead to infighting as some have suggested. In reality, it happened at a time the Beltrans were restructuring their alliances with the Juarez and Gulf cartels with the intent of fortifying their strongholds and positions against the forces of the government and their rivals according to confidential army sources.

Data from the Secretariat of National Defense (SEDENA) indicates the Beltran's are one of the major sources of police corruption at all levels. Around December of 2009 arrangements began to cut ties with old alliances and try to get in with other organizations who were stronger and less bruised by the wars. Beltran Leyva representatives, under the direction of Hector 'El Hache' and an emerging group group of dealers and sicarios contacted the Juarez cartel and sought to ally themselves with the Gulf cartel in order to minimize losses and protect their territories and smuggling routes against Los Zetas.

One of those territories was Sonora, where Hector Beltran Leyva sustained business ties with Francisco Hernandez Garcia, alias El 2000 or El Panchillo who was one of the most important elements in their organization under the direction of Arturo Beltran and who also sought refuge in that state when the war began. El Panchillo also served initially as a drug connection to the Juarez and Gulf cartels and later he provided backup for the Beltran troops in Guerrero and was awarded with control of the Morelos plaza. However, in May of 2009 a situation involving two operators for the cartel became violent and threatened to destabilized business matters for all. Above all, he is the only one of the major connections of his level who has stayed visible in the structure of the organization since anti-crime offensives were formally launched against the Beltran's and especially since the arrest of El Grande.

On March 24th 2009 the General Prosecutor for the Republic (PGR) used the resources of the federal government to offer rewards for the capture of the top capos of the drug cartels, including their most important sicarios and operators. On the Beltrans Leyva's list appeared the names of Francisco Hernandez Garcia and Sergio Villareal Barragan alias El Grande. Also on the list Alberto Pineda Villa alias El Borrado and his brother Marco Antonio Pineda Villa a.k.a. El MP along with, Hector Huerta Rios a.k.a La Burra or El Junior (he was captured by the army in Monterrey two days after it has announced by the PGR). For their capture the PGR offered 15 million pesos (1.2 million U.S. Dollars).

In May of 2009 an operative of the federal police detained the fathers and uncles of Pineda Villa during a family celebration. The police where looking for the brothers because they had recently ordered the execution of the Prosecutor for the state of Morelos Andres Dimitriades Juarez, accusing him of not respected a pact he made in exchange for the capture of a Beltran Leyva cell operating in Cuernavaca.

Arturo Beltran knew that Alberto and Mario Pineda Villa had formed various hit squads to protect the plaza, but he also knew they were furious with Genaro Garci Luna and wanted vengeance against him for ordering the arrest of their fathers. From there, a chain of executions were unleashed on Morelos between May and September of 2009.

The Plaza Heats Up

The analysis from SEDENA shows that due to these developments, the Beltran Leyva organization “heated up” up the plaza of Morelos and exposed several principal operators and left territory vulnerable to rival narcos, among them the Sinaloa cartel. The Pineda Villa brothers had turned into a two-headed problem for the Beyltran Leyva organization, especially because they made the presence of the capos obvious and because their sicarios were now conducting operations without the supervision of Edgar Valdez Villareal, La Barbie or Sergio Villareal Barragan, El Grande.Without going into more details, the document indicates that before this situation went any further, the leadership of the cartel decided to eliminate the brothers because of the problems they were generating for the cartel.

The body of Marco Lopez was found on a street on Acapulco with a narco-message which accused him as a traitor. The message was signed El Jefe de Jefes (The Boss of all Bosses), a title used by Arturo Beltran Leyva. In September, the body of El Barrado was found completely burned inside a vehicle parked on a street in Jantelelco. A narco-message found with the body accused the dead man of being a traitor and a kidnapper. It was also signed, El Jefe de Jefes.

According to information from SEDENA and the Federal Secretary for Public Security (SSPF), Sergio Villarreal became the one in charge of restoring order in Morelos. Keeping a low profile and only carrying out executions when necessary; El Grande was responsible for the deaths of many police ministers, commandantes and sicarios in the state of Morelos. After the death of Arturo Beltran Leyva in December of 2009, serious fractures that started when elements of the army in Culiacan, Sinaloa arrested Alfredo Betral Leyva El Mochomo began to shake the foundation of the cartel.

About the arrest of Sergio Villarreal Barragan and the probable affects of the operation and structure of the Beltran Leyva cartel; “in an organization of this type with a clear financial and criminal structure, there are two or three figures under the principle leader who are prepared to follow through with the duties of a sicario, of gathering intelligence and counter-intelligence, and acquiring firearms and drugs.” was the precise text.

Immediately after the death of Arturo Beltran during a confrontation with the marines, three factions of the cartel formed; that of Edgar Valdel Villarreal, another of Sergio Villarreal Barragan, one loyal to Hector Beltran Leyva. “Hector and El Grande united against La Barbie and since his arrest there was a disagreement between Hector and El Grande over who would assume control of the organization, it had been brewing since the capture of Gerardo Alvarez Vazquez, El Indio and Gamaliel Aguirre Tavira, El Guero Huetamo, in the state of Guerrero.

SEDANA claims “This should have split the cartel but it wasn't the case, the street level day-to-day operations were not affected.” This was part of the strategy; groups, cells, and sections that perform different functions allowing each part of the cartel to continue to work without being affect by the actions of another group. This is why people in the organization such as Edgar Valdez and Sergio Villarreal had a certain level of independence to act within certain limits in predetermined zones, including taking action against rival cartels such as Los Zetas in Monterrey.

At this moment “there is talk of destabilization of this cartel and this opens up the possibility to a new wave of violence as their rivals seek to claim the Beltran Leyva's former territories and smuggling routes.” From the perspective of military analysts the fall of El Grande permitted Hector Beltran space and time to work on establishing alliances with the Juarez and Gulf cartels for whom he had worked with to provide use of smuggling routes and providing protection for various politicians in various states. If Hector wishes to maintain areas he controls in Mexico as well as his markets in the U.S. he must align himself with others who can help him maintain his strongholds.

Source: Mundo Narco


  1. This is the kind of article that I like to read on here, thanks for posting it. So, El H has been reaching out to Juarez and Gulf? How do Juarez and CDG stand? I remember CDG posted that letter a few months ago, which referred to La Linea as 'rapists and baby killers', if I remember correctly. I wonder if CDG would be reluctant to work with the Beltrans, because it could strain things between Sinaloa and the Gulf.

    As far as the structure, most cartels are set up like that, independent workers in cells loyal to one group or leader, but when one falls, the others are relatively un affected. It's a linear business model, not a horizontal one, if I'm not mistaken. Borderland Beat reported a few days ago that Hector Beltran was taken into custody, so who knows where the CPS/Beltran Leyvas stand.

  2. It does sound strange that CDG would join an alliance between Juarez and CPS because as you have suggested J it may cause friction in the Federation (Sinaloa, CDG, La Familia). However, Mark Bowden suggests in his book on Juarez that on occasion, rival groups will work with each other to facilitate the movement of drugs and money. Usually they achieve this by paying to use their rivals smuggling routes, it sounds odd but if we take the article at face value, the fact that these cartels are compartmentalized would make it easier for these serendipitous situations to occur.

    The way these alliances are made and broken seems likely that talk of rapists and baby killers true or not, is mostly propaganda. CDG and Sinaloa have fought a previous war and if I'm not mistaken, CDG has no real love for El Chapo.

  3. A discrete overture.

  4. I think we can safely say "H" was not in fact apprehended.
    Alliances for a specific goal happens irregardless of personal feelings. I maybe wrong but I thought recently Gulfo & Sinaloa had an alliance for the sole purpose of distruction of Zs. I am relying on memory here, but it seems there was a 3rd party I am thinking Juarez, again for that limited purpose.

    The book I MURDER CITY by CHARLES BOWDEN, an excellent read, I could not put it down.

  5. I'll check out 'Murder City', does it focus on Juarez/Sinaloa? Or the female maquiladora murders? If it's the latter, I'll have to pass. I liked 'Down By The River' though, Bowden seems to have a lot of admiration for Amado Carrilo.

    The third party you mentioned is La Familia. The alliance against the Zeta's is LFM, CDG, and CDS.

  6. Just a thought, could intel from "LA BARBIE" have anything to do with his capture?

  7. I meant Charles Bowden. Murder City is about Juarez and the gang violence. Great book, reads like a western.

    Everyone wants the Z gone. As the old saying goes "The enemy of my enemy is my friend." I think this proverb still rings very true in Mexico.

  8. Any cartel that goes against the sinaloa cartel is on a suicide mission. Almost every other cartel leader has been killed or captured except for el chapo. People including a bishop said that el chapo was residing in durango and still he remains untouchable. Even the juarez cartel declared war on the police for aiding the sinaloa cartel. It seems to me that felipe calderon wants the sinaloa cartel, the oldest and most powerful cartel, to monopolize the drug business. El chapo has become an enigma while the other cartel leaders seem just human. Even the FBI stated that el chapo is winning the war. So the future seems to me like it doesn't matter what the other cartels do. The sinaloa cartel will be the last powerful cartel standing in the end.


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