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

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

43 Drug Cartel Suspects Arrested in San Diego....Again.

43 Drug Cartel Suspects arrested

Today 'Operation Second Sole' was announced by authorities in San Diego, California, 14 were arrested in early morning raids in the South Bay area, and surrounding suburbs. Those detained today, were described as 'high value targets with cartel connections'. Authorities say more arrests are imminent, and have not released the names of those charged, nor a list of complaints against the defendants. The year long operation was a joint effort, that according to San Diego Police Chief William Landsdowne stated that the operation began as a local police investigation into drug trafficking, and grew to include the following Federal agencies, Alcohol Tobacco & Firearms, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, the U.S Marshal's Service, among others.

During the press conference Capt. Jim Collins of the SDPD declared that during the course of the operation over 800,000 dollars were seized, in addition to the 376 pounds of cocaine, 46 pounds of methamphetamine, 4 pounds of heroin, and 46 pounds of marijuana. Up to 13 of the suspects, linked to an as of yet, unamed drug cartel will face federal drug trafficking charges. The suspects allegedly participated in crimes ranging from narcotic and weapons trafficking, to home invasions, robbery, and kidnapping, in the continuance of their criminal enterprise.

This announcment comes three days to the year of another San Diego based crackdown on cartel members operating in the city, 'Operation Luz Verde's indictment was unsealed on July 22, 2010, a criminal complaints against 43 accused drug suspects linked to the CAF (Cartel Arellano Felix), though referred to in the indictment as FSO (Fernando Sanchez Organization), after the alleged boss of the group, known as El Ingeniero, who was named, yet not indicted.

Though details remain scarce, the similarities between the two are unmistakable, with several differences that could prove important. The 43 is most likely a coincidence, but the timing, a year long operation, directly following another could be the result of testimony from those held in the 'Luz Verde', case. Those 43 named last summer have yet to be sentenced, and no reports of any court room appearances have been made public. Armando 'El Gordo' Villareal, a primary defendant in 'Luz Verde' who remained unapprehended, was detained in Sonora a week ago. "Operation Second Sole' seems to suggest a 'second' of some sort, and the alleged crimes are practically identical to those of 'Luz Verde', including trafficking, kidnapping, and home invasions, in the South Bay area, with the accused cartel members or associates living in San Diego homes and apartments. Also, in both cases authorities have stated that they stopped either murders from being committed, or in the case of 'Second Sole' a kidnapping and subsequent homicide. This points in the direction of cooperating informants, wiretaps, and heavy surveillance of those involved.

Some important differences remain, however, the defendants in the 'Luz Verde', primarily trafficked in methamphetamine and marijuana, and although some cocaine was seized, (30 pounds) there is a large contrast between the amount seen in 'Second Sole' (376 pounds), while only 46 pounds of marijuana were confiscated. Are the differences coincidental? Or are these the workers and associates of a different cartel, that traffics cocaine on a larger scale then the FSO? Also, from the beginning the authorities labeled those rounded up a year ago, as members and associates of Fernando Sanchez's group, while so far authorities have only said "some had associations with drug cartels". However, looking at the amounts and types of drug seized, it's clear that the indictments of 'Second Sole' have more then a tentative link to a larger organization. It is unknown when more details will be released, that will shed more light on the two cases, and the link, or lack of a link between them.

Link to video report:

Sources, AFN Tijuana, Sign on San Diego, San Diego Ten News, San Diego 8 News, DEA.Gov, Zeta Tijuana.


  1. This sure sounds to me like the same things that the cartels do in Mexico, and our President says that there is no spillover along the Border? I think he lives in a vacuum. Why won't he help those people crying for help from our government? Why doesn't he visit those ravished by the flooding rivers in the US?

  2. " cartel connections"? Sounds a little exaggerated just saying. Were they really CAF? What exactly is a " cartel connection"?

  3. I really don't know if they are affiliated with CAF, yet, they are with someone though, and I think if you look at the indictment from last year, and the amount of drugs involved and the similarities it's obvious this is another of the same, whether it's people with Tijuana, or people with Achilles.

    It does, at first glance, appear to be exaggerated, but I think they are just downplaying it, for some reason, as opposed to the pres conference last year. Hopefully, the indictment is unsealed, and we can get some real information.

  4. I live near a house that got raided. i actually woke up to swat down the street from my house. The guys caught by my house were gang members and i heard of the kind of crap they were into some of which included robbery, car theft, and drug trafficking. the kidnapping that was going to occur i believe was for some money that was owed and was def. not an innocent that was going to have to pay a ransom. This is the kind of stuff that gang members are get into and i think the cartel affiliation is overly exaggerated.

  5. yer right anon...some one should take ohbumma a map and show him Mexico and afgannystan on the him some figures death rates ..etc..point out that Mexico is a lot closer than "gannystan...and mention how Mexican related crime is rising fast along the border and bleeding over to our side ...and how we have 15? 20? million illegals...(how many are under the thumb or criminals?) know ..maybe help him out a little bit...he seems a little weak on actually defending OUR country...more focused on defending other interests..i want say the name of the particular country...but ahem..coughaipac... least their buddies wont be able to storm the police station and free them...not yet at least...just keep that porous border though ..and we are gonna have Mexico in the USA

  6. These gang members are mostly american citizens. The illegal immigrants are usually the guys holding, dropping off, exchanging drugs. But the guys doing the retail sales, and the violence against innocents, those are mostly sureno's, members of street gangs, and born here

  7. @LB... uobviously u dnt understand the way ur own country runs ther are politics that obama has no control of he cant just do what ever u want him to do .. and in regards of ur comment most of the people who are involved with organized crime on this side of the border are us citizens

  8. N--
    A cartel associate is one who affiliated with a cartel or cartels. These guys are just dealers who have connections and the Law uses these connections to try them as part of a bigger organization. If they have multiple cartel connections it is realistic to consider Tijuana or Sinaloa cartels. Maybe LFM but they are restructuring.

    These individuals probably had more ties to the Mexican Mafia more than anything. But now it is more appealing to say cartel connection since the whole drug war is a hot topic approaching 60,000 deaths.They (EME) are the ones who help get rid of the work once in the Sur Bay of SD and up. Highly doubt they caught any important cartel figures. To bad the drugs will keep flowing and a seizure like this that only takes place once a year, when in reality there is more drugs and money crossing by the HOUR. The Government (DHS) should donate this money to San Diego school districts to rehire the laid-off teachers that they cant afford to bring back. PLEASE BE MAD ABOUT WHAT IS GOING ON IN {OUR} COUNTRY exp(3 UNCONSTITUTIONAL WARS, DEBT, OFFSHORING OF U.S. JOBS and the FED RESERVE PRINTING UP ALL THIS PAPER CAUSING HYPER INFLATION).

  9. Some of you make fair points, others are kind of trite, this happens all the time in these things, of course a lot of these arrested are low level players, gang members, surenos, whatever, yes, thats a given. But, there are probably some legitimate people too, as in the last case exactly like this. As far as I know, the eme really doesn't have the biggest presence in San Diego, even in the south bay. I'd like to know if the two are related, and who these people are allegedly connected too.

  10. N--
    They have always been related (David Baron & Bat Marquez) just 2 high profile names to mention. There is a difference between a Sureno and an EME member. Not just anybody who goes to jail is EME but they are Surenos. A Mexican Mafia member could be classified as a legit drug dealer who has power and EmE credentials. Who controls the California Prison System? The EmE does even parts of Northern California, like Pelican bay, and San Quentin. If they run the inside who runs it on the outside? Blacks, Asians, definitely not the Cartel. The EmE does have a presence in San Diego that you aren't too familiar with because the name EmE and EmE bust aren't in the news. Most of the top dawgs are behind bars and let certain people in the streets USE their name in order to have protection and etc. One of the main EmE leaders is from San Diego, ShellTown to be exact. How do some of EmE members put their kids through college and take care of their family while behind bars? I know of people who where actually apprehended from Luz Verde and they where affiliated with EmE members. Once they reach a certain level like David Baron & Bat Marquez they are considered cartel affiliates or members. This bust said affiliates. Just my 2 cents.

  11. Those two you mentioned were active roughly a decade or so ago, and by the time the police caught up with Bat Marquez he was reduced to working a safehouse with kidnap victims. The Logan area has long had ties to Tijuana, and that probably hasn't changed, but look at the leadership of the 'New Generation', hardly any of those are Eme.

    That being said, I'm sure some of these guys were, by default, just gang members who have been to prison and joined up, but it's not like the Mexican Mafia runs the drugs thru San Diego, or the majority arrested in this operation are eme. 'Luz Verde' has a handful, but a lot of them weren't. Still nothing on this, Luz Verde completley disappeared from the press after the initial reports, and arraignment of corrupt Mex. official. Hope this isn't the case here.

  12. @ anon July 20, 2011 10:55 AM

    yeah yer right ..feel better now?


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