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

Sunday, July 31, 2011

José Antonio Acosta Hernández, also known as El Diego is presented to the media

A key drug cartel figure who acknowledged ordering 1,500 killings has been captured in northern Mexico, federal officials said Sunday.

Jose Antonio Acosta Hernandez also is a suspect in last year's slaying of a U.S. consulate employee near a border crossing in Ciudad Juarez.

Mexican President Felipe Calderon said through his Twitter account that Acosta's capture is "the biggest blow" to organized crime in Ciudad Juarez since he sent about 5,000 federal police to the city in April 2010 to try to curb violence in one of the world's most dangerous cities.

Acosta, nicknamed "El Diego," told federal police he ordered 1,500 killings, Pequeno said at the press conference. Investigators believe he was the mastermind of an attack last year that killed a U.S. consulate employee, her husband and the husband of another consulate worker in Ciudad Juarez, he said.

U.S. prosecutors also want to try him in that case. A federal indictment filed in the western district of Texas says Acosta and nine others conspired to kill the three.

Pequeno said he expects an extradition request from the U.S. government.

He is accused of being the mastermind of some of the deadliest incidents in Juárez in recent years while the rival cartels fought for control of a lucrative smuggling corridors to the U.S. drug market. In recent weeks, narco-graffiti threatening the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration and U.S. Consulate employees appeared on public walls in Juárez and Chihuahua City. The messages telling the "gringos of the DEA" to quit meddling were signed "Diego."

Mexican drug cartels typically try to avoid direct confrontation with U.S. law enforcement, and whether the threats were a sign of desperation or a large ego is up for debate.

Many of the public threats from La Linea made frequent references to "El Diego."

Drug cartels in Mexico regularly hang banners, known as "narco mantas," in public as a type of propaganda to taunt rivals or police.

Mexican authorities alleged that Acosta ordered several murders and gave the order for a cartel hit squad to attack a birthday party in January 2010 in the Villas de Salvarcar neighborhood of Juárez -- an attack that killed 15 young people.

In March, the FBI announced that Acosta had been indicted in connection with the slayings in Juárez of three people linked to the U.S. Consulate there. The FBI alleged the slayings were carried out by members of the Barrio Azteca gang on orders from the Juárez drug cartel.

On March 13, 2010, consulate employee Lesley Enriquez Redelfs and her husband, Arthur Redelfs, an El Paso County sheriff's detention officer, were fatally shot in a street attack after leaving a children's party.

The El Pasoans were killed along with Jorge Alberto Salcido Ceniceros, whose wife worked at the consulate. The Redelfs and Salcido were slain in separate shootings after leaving the party within minutes of each other.

The Redelfs and Salcido were attacked while driving small white sport utility vehicles. The Redelfs' then 7-month daughter, Rebecca, was in the back of the vehicle during the attack but was not injured. Rebecca, who is going to be 2 years old in August, is being raised by Arthur Redelfs' mother and extended family.

Reuben Redelfs, a brother of Arthur Redelfs, said Saturday that the last year and half has been difficult and that the news of the arrest of Acosta was welcomed.

"We're taking it one day at a time to heal. He was my little brother and my buddy," Reuben Redelfs said. "But we are happy to hear that the state arrested him. The Mexican authorities and the FBI have been aggressive to find this man and bring him to justice, and what we'd really like to see is get him extradited as soon as possible and see justice served here."

U.S. Attorney John E. Murphy said at the time of the slayings that "there is no evidence from the indictment it (the attack) was anything but a mistake. The victims that were killed were not specifically targeted by anything they had done."

Reuben Redelfs said Arthur and Lesley Redelfs would visit Juárez often.

"The connection across the border was her family," Reuben Redelfs said. "I'm still not over it, and I still try to understand what happened. But I know there are a lot of families out there in Juárez that go through this every day, and I just want to tell them to stay strong."

An El Paso County sheriff's spokeswoman said the Sheriff's Office would not comment on Acosta's arrest because it was still an ongoing case.

Acosta, who is a Mexican citizen, is charged by the U.S. with murder and conspiracy to kill a person in a foreign country.

A spokesman for the FBI in El Paso, Special Agent Michael Martinez, said Saturday that the agency had no comment to make at this time. The DEA in El Paso also declined to comment on Acosta's arrest.

In Mexico, the government had set up "wanted" billboards in Chihuahua offering a reward of 15 million pesos (about $1.2 million) for information that led to Acosta's capture. Some of the billboards were burned down.

There were recent signs that authorities were closing in on Acosta after some of his close associates were arrested by Mexican authorities in Chihuahua City.

In mid-June, Mexican federal police arrested a reputed lieutenant, Marco Antonio Guzmán Zúñiga, who was thought to be Acosta's right-hand man. Guzmán, who is nicknamed "El Dos" and "El Brad Pitt," is a Juárez native and a former city police officer.

Chihuahua state prosecutors had offered a reward of a half-million pesos for information leading to Guzmán's capture. Officials alleged Guzmán coordinated drug operations in cities throughout Chihuahua, bribed authorities and controlled prisons in Chihuahua City.

Soon after Guzmán's arrest, Mexican army soldiers captured Jose Guadalupe Rivas Gonzalez, alias "El Zucaritas," who was described as being a close associate of Acosta. Rivas' nickname, "Zucaritas," is the Spanish name for Frosted Flakes.

On July 15, the U.S. Consulate in Juárez issued an emergency alert warning that Mexican drug cartels may target the consulate and the international bridges, possibly in retaliation for the capture of key cartel members.

The alert asked U.S. citizens to be vigilant and cautioned that cartels have used car bombs in the past. The alert was issued on the anniversary of the car bombing on a downtown Juárez street aimed at Mexican federal police.

The capture of Acosta may be a new beginning for Juárez residents and a decrease in violence, said University of Texas at El Paso political science professor Tony Payan.

"This arrest can bring a lot of good if he can produce useful information to authorities," Payan said. "And El Diego was a very hands-on guy. He was a former state policeman during the previous governmental administration, and he knew the state and the government. He had a lot of control over the groups that would kidnap people for extortion money and burglarize them. If his capture produces quite a bit of information and the operation of its armed branch, La Linea, then it could finally be the beginning of the end of the Juárez cartel."



  1. Big hit for the CDJ ,well see what happens next in this never ending drama what is Mexico. CDS is every happy one less boss on there list and 1 less guy fucking with there plaza. *(I)*

  2. I think El Rikin in 09 was a much bigger blow. LOL, "it could finally be the beginning of the end of the Juarez Cartel." I wish i had a dollar for every time I read and heard that. It would be a nice 3 weeks in Vegas.

    As long as there is a Juarez, El Paso, and Chihuahua City, there will be a Juarez Cartel. It's a huge ghetto recruiting ground and they come with balls and hate.

  3. Damn, I the video, he sure looked like a man torn by ghosts. Not the typical sociopath killers we usually see.

  4. Texcoco Mex said

    Fuck this guy I hope he gets killed.

  5. I wish we could do some "greatest warrior" style fights, and pit this guys cells vs. Rikins cell and see who the best enforcer is. Or take the head of the gente nueve vs la linea vs the skorpiones and like 30 of their top guys. Let em duke it out in one city see who comes out on top

  6. These dudes can't fight. They're straight up (I)

  7. 2:55 PM... I like the way you think. A little twisted like myself. Hey, lets stack the deck a little too. Lets put 2 la Linea or CDG cells against 1 Zeta cell. And root like hell for the favored. And if the do well, we might let them go. All kidding aside, that is what is going on in the Juarez prison right now.

  8. Rot in hell Diego !!! You are a POS that is directly responsible for many deaths, amongst the many innocent. I would kill you myself if given the opportunity.

  9. I don't understand how most of these guys can be leader of a mercenary force when they can't even hold a straight face without breaking into tears of shame. WTF? What's the matter with Diego? I'm sure he wasn't crying when he had people's heads chopped off, tortured, raped, and humiliated. But everything is a big deal to him when he is finally handcuffed and having his pictures taken by the media. I wonder what his family member and relatives think of him. Hopefully, they don't look up to him.

  10. Hang him together with the NRA!

  11. When push comes to shove, The Mexican Police know who the key players and can get Human Garbage like El Diego off the street.

  12. Diego didn't kill as many as William Newell. Wish the Mexican jails and courts had him. I wish they would insist on extraditing him to Mexico.

  13. Hopefully forthcoming statements from Diego will shed some light on the murders of the consulate employees, I wonder what the thinking behind that was. I know the 'prompt the US authorities' theory was floating around but it still doesn't fully connect to me. Also, on the state of the GN Vs. Linea conflict, and some insight into the politics of the Juarez Cartel/La Linea/Aztecas.

    1500 is a lot on someones conscience. And for what now? A press conference, a story in Procesco, and a cell in Mexico City?

  14. 6:58 PM..."The Mexican Police know who the key players are and can get Human Garbage like El Diego off the streets." This guy deserves 10 years in isolation before the death penalty of death by beheading, but I disagree with you about the Police. If your statement were true, Lasca and 40 would for sure be in jail. They aren't and because of this the Zetas are multiplying and breaking out everywhere. And when they do arrest someone, another one even worse takes over.

  15. his captains already replace him with a more sadistic killer/leader he will be out of prison in a year they can say he is responsible but with no evidence he will be out of jail in 1-5 years that mexico legal system

  16. This cats boss is JL Ledesma, aka JL, Dos Letras, and "the beast." JL was the top enforcer for La Linea back in Amado Carrillo's day. He came by "the beast" honestly because that is exactly what he was. Nobody wanted to be on the opposing side of that man. He is a ghost, rarely seen and was only whispered about, "seriously." Back in the 90s, a quick way to wake up dead was to talk about JL in public.

    I really think this is why El Rikin and Diego were so ruthless, they were trained by the most ruthless and were held accountable by him. When Mexicans call somebody a beast, "they are." He is Viceroy's right hand, you can bet your *** he is nowhere to be found just like the general.

  17. If he really is responsible for killing over 1000 people then fuck him I bet out of the 1500 or so people only about 10 percent were actual rival cartel members. I hope he chokes to death on tasteless prison food or gets bummed to death by the anal ass raper gang on his wing!

  18. Señor 13 simpre attente 04 y 08 lo acompanan poco hablan mucho hacen y ala orden Ellos Matan, Es gente muy peligrosa Con respeto se les habla.!!! Ahuevo aki rifan Los beltran leyva arriba mazatlan y Los mazatlecos.

  19. A la verga con los (z) y los vicpendejo no se metan con lo rojos
    Attn; el g69 el eqipo esta con ustedes los cu x99 h45 - r50

  20. Take note how this capture will do nothing to relieve the situation in Ciudad Juarez except to make for some cool sounding headlines. The truth of this capture will be relvealed but I bet that this guy knows very little of anything operational that is not involved with the actual enforcement aspect of the CDJ's dealings. This man has already been replaced and look for a narco grafiti to confirm this in the near future. Most of the people involved knowingly participate understanding that this is a possible outcome and therefore as a part of a very clandestine structure that is the uppper level leadership of CDJ very little is asked or know by these people outside their assinged task. The thing that is scary about this seemingly endless adaptibility of the CDJ in the face of constant political and armed pressure is that Ciudad Juarez will bear witness to any and all future events regarding war for territory. Either it allows invaders/outsiders to instill a new order in which not only criminals but the general populace will be subjugates to someone elses whim or it continues to get decimated by the thousands as both criminals and innocent people continue to get murdered.

  21. @12:19 what I jesus christ holy name did you just say? You are an idiot who makes no sense, los Rojos are Beltran Leyva which operate closely with the Zetas

  22. 8:08 is right, Diego and Rikin were both subordinates of JL. But JL is nowhere to be found, also if you go and rewatch Barbie's interrogation. He talks about JL and how much of an asshole he was and how none of the other bosses liked him. Part of the war was started bc CDS had problems with JL..

  23. 12 02 your an idiot, los rojos are group that operates with cdg. If the beltranes also have a group then it makes 2 big deal.

  24. the picture thats full of blood in the floor..., that was my nephew birth day party...his mom, whitch is my cusin, was killed of by many of thoes fu***** that kill many friends in that party, I hope they get the rest and die in jail or, hell will drag them for all they done to her and his husband, son`s , and daughters, an I!!...I wanted to see her alive, it was 6 years that I didnt see her, because she when too Juarez, but me and my mom where goint to go and visit her, but my mom got sick of cancer survied it once but never made it twice, we try so hard too go and see her but my mom never made it 3 months later my nephew "bth-day boy" invites me to go to the party, I was goint to go but my dad never did let me, beacuse it was in Juares I didnt care because I just wanted to se my cousin, but then she called me saying she was goint to come and visit me in El Paso, so I did sleep I wanted to see her alreay I was to happy about the knews...untill I saw the news I wanted to kill my self, because I saw her ,but not the way I wanted to see her in the floor bloody...I just wish i could of been there so I could of been her shield, that yellow chair... she was sitting on that one she only stand up to hide her kids untill they shoot her from behind and fall to the floor....I just whant to have all those who where involed in this to get capture or get k.....!!!! R.I.P Cousin & and frineds!!! :(


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