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

Monday, July 30, 2012

They're planting drugs on federal lands

Luz del Carmen Sosa

El Diario. 7-30-2012. Namiquipa, Chih. Drug traffickers in the State of Chihuahua plant marijuana even on federal lands. Cultivation of the drug on the fertile lands in some municipalities goes unpunished  because it is too difficult for the Federal Public Ministry (federal prosecutors) to locate the owners of the marijuana.

Drug traffickers find suitable areas for this activity via satellite and they choose sites that are close to streams to make sure they have water, especially in times of drought. When these plots are located by the Federal Attorney General's Office (PGR: Procuraduria General de la Republica) or the Department of Defense (Sedena: Secretaria de la Defensa Nacional)-- from the air-- there's no way to  prosecute the owners of the property where the drugs are growing...the property belongs to the federal government.

"All we can do is initiate an investigation in the area to find out who is growing (marijuana) and try to locate the responsible parties," says PGR delegate Cesar Augusto Peniche Espejel during the destruction of the first plot found this season. The cost of the operation was not yet calculated. At least 20 federal officials participated in the operation, each with different duties, including the driver of the tank truck that transported the fuel and the two helicopter pilots.

How much marijuana was kept from reaching the market was impossible to determine. Peniche Espejel estimates that 80% of the national production (of marijuana) goes to the United States and 20% stays in the state. Securing and destroying two small plots on federal property demonstrates the capabilities of the drug trafficking industry in Chihuahua and the fight appears uneven. The federal agents must deal with human and technological shortages against the ever-more sophisticated organized crime infrastructure.

This operation was a success and the public servants celebrated. There are public officials who are trying to contain the production, planting and cultivation of drugs with limited resources and equipment, and they face internal contamination and criminal organizations that employ all their powers of corruption and violence to make sure their business succeeds, says Mexican journalist Jorge Luis Sierra.

This expert on matters of public safety and organized crime explains that these (eradication) efforts are overshadowed by the capacity of drug trafficking organizations to absorb the losses from eradication of the plots and still maintain a level of production that satisfies the demand in the U.S. and the domestic markets. According to U.S. authorities, Mexico seized six tons of cocaine in 2011, which is approximately 2% of the 300 tons of cocaine that go through Mexico bound for the United States.

"The same thing happens in the case of marijuana. Mexico seized 900 metric tons in 2011, but both countries estimate that this country has a much higher production capability. The most recent estimate was done in 2008 when the U.S. determined that Mexico had the potential to produce 21,000 metric tons of cannabis a year," he explains. 

In search of the plots

The oak and pine foliage protects the green marijuana plants. They cannot be easily seen from the air and only the experience in searching out plots that the team has, mostly made up of pilots with military training, allows the plants to be detected. These specialists guide their aircraft mostly over stream beds and arroyos, they know that the cultivated plots may be close by, and this time they were right on.  On Friday morning they located almost four acres planted with marijuana.

In a canyon located about 20 miles northwest of Namiquipa Municipality, right on communal lands of Nuevo Delicias, they located the two plots. The next day, agents of the Federal Public Ministry and Federal Ministerial Police officers, led by PGR delegate Cesar Augusto Peniche Espejel, traveled to the site to verify the finding and destroy (the crop).

In the river, recent rains have created a strong current and both the local farmers and drug traffickers are taking advantage of the water.

"The natural availability of water helps cultivation. Trees have been cleared on this side of the property to level the ground to clear the land of vegetation," explains the official at the site.

It was not easy to get to this location.  The team had to be transported by helicopter to get them to a place where there were rocks on the river bed. There, they crossed the river, then traveled for several minutes on foot. The people caring for the plot used horses to get there and it appears they fled by the same means. 

The trunks of cut trees and pine trees could be seen on the ground. Others were (left standing) to protect the plants, four plants per square yard, and although some of the plants were quite small, some had grown to almost four feet.

"They don't clear all the trees because trees help camouflage the marijuana plants," adds the PGR delegate.

The primitive irrigation system can be seen among the plants. Hoses and plastic fittings allow river water to flow, in this case with a great deal of strength because the current was strong with the recent rains.

"Rains were delayed a month this year and our marijuana plots eradication program also follows the rainy season.  In this case, the plants start growing thirty days after the first rains, and that's when we can identify the plantings," he says.

According to the federal eradication program, the PGR has 60 days to locate and destroy marijuana plots. "In the next 60 days we will locate other plots as the plants grow big enough, and, of course, there are places we haven't yet flown over where we're going to find taller plants,." he explains.

The boundaries of Namiquipa municipality contain some of the places used by drug traffickers to plant drugs. "We've located other areas in the state, and we will be locating the plots according to schedule. The important thing is to get there when they are this tall, because that won't give the traffickers an opportunity to re-plant the land. With 60 days (remaining), they can't get another crop in," he asserts.

The Army also takes part in the marijuana eradication program. That's why a joint effort is so important, because there are areas that are very difficult to access. That's where the Army comes in.

"All these eradication efforts, added to climate conditions, will inevitably increase their desperation and decrease their income, and that helps us because they will take more chances to get the drugs out and take them north," says the government official.


  1. On Wednesday a U.S. Coast Guard crew seized 8,500 pounds of marijuana off the coast of San Pedro, south of Los Angeles. The San Francisco-based Coast Guard Cutter Aspen was the boat that made the huge bust.According to Capt. James Jenkins, commander of the Coast Guard’s Los Angeles/Long Beach Sector, “Stopping these drugs from reaching our streets is a great accomplishment, but it’s just the tip of the iceberg with respect to the impact on the drug trafficking organizations.” He further stated that, “The money from marijuana trafficking fuels a wider cycle of drug smuggling, crime and violence.”The Coast Guard also said that of the 56 total seizures they seized 50-tons of marijuana drugs since October 1, 2011, and this is four times the amount seized in the same area during the entire previous fiscal year. According to the US Coast guard, the 8,500 pounds of weed is worth $7.7 million and the 50-tons seized is worth $90 million.Doing the MathThe 8,500 pounds of Mexican weed seized by US Coast Guard, that is being valued at $7.7 million is often identified as “stress” in California, Nevada, Arizona, and most places on the west coast and Southwestern area of the US and does not cost or has the value the Coast Guard is claiming.The Coast Guard is putting the value of $900.00 per pound on the recent seizure and in their 50-ton collective seizures they have used the same value. The weed from Mexico does not carry that value in California or the western part of the US. In California, pounds of the weed from Mexico sell for about $350.00 per pound if one if buying only one pound. If one purchases multiple pounds of weed, the wholesale price per pound can come down to $250.00 per pound. Using these more realistic price values the 8,500 pounds is worth between $2.1 and 2.9 million, much lower than the Coast Guard estimates.In Mexico, where this weed was grown, pounds retail for about $20.00 each, which would value the entire seizure at $170 thousand.Once the weed is sold by the pounds in the western US, street dealers may resell it in quarter pounds ($120) or ounces ($40) and those can be further broken down to $20 and $10 bags. Determining a value using these calculations are impossible to calculate, because the weed is going to be sold in many different types of quantities. But if one wanted to know how much would someone earn by selling the entire 8,500 pounds via $10 bags (3 grams), that dealer would earn $12.6 million. You would need about 630,000 small baggies to “curb serve” the entire load.As a rule, 2 tons (4,000 pounds) of Mexican weed is worth about $1 million, but once you get into further regions of the US, in the Midwest and deep South, the price per pound can fetch $500 and $600 per pound. These prices do not apply to higher grades of Marijuana grown in Northern California, such as Kush, which can sell for close to $4,000 per pound. This seizure was clearly no Kush.

  2. I Think if mental people were prescribed this drug instead of those pills this war and those mental people would be better off but what do I know I only been studying this for about ten years...

  3. OMG So so much emphasis and work and MONEY into trying to get RID of a WEED that grows WILD. We the people should focus on getting RID of incompetent public officials that cost us taxpayers lots of MONEY, We should concentrate on eradicating the violent, thieving ratbastards that hurt and steal from the HARDWORKING majority. These extortioning, kidnapping, MF's should be first priority. NOT A WEED

  4. Just a tip of the iceburg

  5. "Drug traffickers in the State of Chihuahua plant marijuana even on federal lands"....

    I looked in vain for mention of the US federal land being used in a far greater capacity.. so link here for info

    Cartels have used federal land of the United States (especially west coast) for years, back as far as 2007 is when I first heard of it. Using Mexican land is not shocking, they are mexican cartels. now using the US for a huge percentage of their MJ production is.

    Youtube has many great documentaries about using the US federal land here is an old one from CNN

  6. The drugs would be as worthless if they were cigarets or moonshine if only the american people would plant pot seeds everywhere all over the us

  7. If marijuana is going to be called a drug. Then alcohol and tobacco should get the same label. Philip Morris and the beer companies tamper with the chemical makeup for their products to get a steady flow of consumers.

    Another thing... i've come accross more violent drunks than pot heads. THINK ABOUT IT.

  8. Hahaha "that's why a 'joint' effort is so important...2nd to last paragraph in the article

  9. Yeah sounds real unbelievable federal land weed grown by the government , NO WAY IN MEXICO ?!?! Wait that means a crooked federal agency , no its impossible . Not in Mexico guys maybe the US . This story is too far feltched .

  10. If the poor in the US would stop buying this worthless brick, this would become moot. Freaking poor people, supporting cartels.

    1. I agree,freakin "Donald Trump"....get the fuck out of here with that shit....idiot!!

  11. Hopefully, a gigantic self righteous mob will get raging drunk and kill the gardeners.

  12. Burning the cartels plots of marijuana sounds like a very satisfying job :)

  13. I wondered why the use of US federal land wasn't mentioned. It's a huge problem here.

  14. Good subject and thank you Vato for translating the information for all of us interested.

    and 7:20 PM-You've been studying the effects of pot like the rest of us periodically.if you've been studying people with mental disabilities for 10 years, you shouldn't still be referring to them as "those mental people." No problem but hat is a little callous.

  15. hey mr/miss ten years...
    July 30, 2012 7:58 PM
    I got some studies from doctors that say your mental people will not be better off.
    substance use disorders (SUDs)
    "Concerns have been expressed regarding the large increase in the potency of cannabis and the surrounding health implications. In the 1960s, the THC content was thought to be in the range of 1% to 3%; today it can reach up to 20%.4"
    "CB1 receptor overstimulation may be a contributing factor in triggering THC-induced psychosis.9"
    "Age at onset of psychosis and cannabis use

    Certain risk factors have been reported to interact with cannabis use to increase vulnerability to developing psychosis. One suspected important variable is the age at which cannabis use is started. The age effect was first noted in a Swedish conscript cohort study that demonstrated that cannabis use by age 18 led to a 6-fold increase in the risk of schizophrenia later in life.12 It is unclear, however, whether the psychotic symptoms predated the cannabis use."
    "Adolescence represents a sensitive period of neurodevelopment, with the brain more vulnerable to the effects of cannabis. "
    "Cannabis also seems to negatively alter the clinical course of schizophrenia. While meta-analyses suggest better cognitive function among cannabis-using patients, this may be a reflection of a higher-functioning subgroup of schizophrenia patients."
    a ton more into available at

  16. They use state and and national parks in the u.s.a

  17. Legalization is the answer. No more wasted resources and money spent over there and in the US.

  18. I don't know where this 20.4% number came from. It sounds like someone is not a very good producer. All of my strains are at a minimum 22% and some have measured at 26%.

    You should really stop the psycho-babble of cannabis driving people insane. That rumor was created and put on display in the movie "Reefer Madness. It also does not cause white women to seek out black men for sex, cause people to become communists, or lower sperm cell count. In fact, it is proven that sperm cells from cannabis users swim faster than non-users.

    The medicinal effects of cannabis have been proven time and again in other countries. The US only keeps it on lockdown because of the money being spent by the Partnership for a Drug-Free America. Their 3 biggest donators? Big Pharma, the tobacco lobby, and the alcohol companies. All of who face the chance of losing an enormous amount of money if cannabis is legalized.

    Colombia has already passed the first stage of a bill to completely legalize cannabis and coca production for personal consumption. Processing coca into paste and the traffiking of either would still remain illegal. Just this year the Colombian Supreme Court ruled that not allowing citizens the option to choose to use cannabis and cocaine infringed on personal development of the individual. 20 grams of cannabis and 1 gram of cocain can now be possessed with no penalty to the individual. When the legalization bill is passed, Colombia will lead the world in hemp production and make billions initially and trillions over time processing the plant for food, clothing, plastics, etc.

    The US would rather keep her citizens as slaves than give such a boost to her own starving economy. The Christian right-wingers supposrt Israel to a fault even though cannabis has been presecribed as medicine there for some time.

    Many countries around the world have used this plant for centuries. When the DuPonts, Hersts, and Aslinger conspired to rid the world of this plant with the Stamp Tax Act, they did so for personal gain and with the support of the right-wing. Now some 70 years later, the lies they told are known and yet the sheeple still follow along blindly. It will be a glorious day when the baby-boomers are all dead and the US can move forward without someone praising jesus and passing the collection plate. Until then, nothing will be able to be accomplished as it relates to protecting the sick and in need.

    For all of those who believe in the lies told by the US over the last 7 decades, I have a beautiful waterfront condo in Arizona I am selling on EBay. No Reserve auction, bidding starts at $.01

  19. for the dude who loves his drugs July 31, 2012 11:51 AM
    we both know we will agree to disagree. remember that when a crime is committed against one of your family that the chances are pretty high pun intended that it will be a customer of yours. jajaja

    In the 2004 Survey of Inmates in State and Federal Correctional Facilities, 32% of state prisoners and 26% of federal prisoners said they had committed their current offense while under the influence of drugs. Among state prisoners, drug offenders (44%) and property offenders (39%) reported the highest incidence of drug use at the time of the offense. Among federal prisoners, drug offenders (32%) and violent offenders (24%) were the most likely to report drug use at the time of their crimes.

    Source: BJS, Drug Use and Dependence, State and Federal Prisoners, 2004, NCJ 213530, October 2006.

    About 74% of state prisoners who had a mental health problem and 56% of those without were dependent on or abused alcohol or drugs. By specific type of substance, inmates who had a mental health problem had higher rates of dependence or abuse of drugs than alcohol. Among state prisoners who had a mental health problem, 62% were dependent on or abused drugs and 51% alcohol.
    Over a third (37%) of state prisoners who had a mental health problem said they had used drugs at the time of the offense, compared to over a quarter (26%) of state prisoners without a mental problem.

    Source: BJS, Mental Health Problems of Prison and Jail Inmates, NCJ 213600, September 2006.

  20. There have been studies in Europe that marijuana stronger than 16 percent T.H.C may cause phychosis in people. In Amsterdam the strongest stuff is capped @ 15% atleast in the legal coffe shops.California has become the global leader in super DANK!!!! There are concetrates that sell for 100 dollars a gram-more than yayo.....They have up to 60% percent thc levels....

  21. I heard when they tested monkeys they used gass mask and suffocate the monkeys to death they killed the monkeys and said marijuana kills brain cells but didn't tell you they murder monkeys!

  22. The only psychotic people are those who believe the conservaative BS you are writing....

    Under your unproven THEORY, there would be millions of psychotics in California alone. You need serious help at the university level so you can be observed 24/7 to understand why your mind allows you to think this way.

    A-Dam is going through a change to a conservative government. The first thing they did was stop foreigners from gaining access and then proceeded to shut down the Cannabis Cup.

    Nobody pays 100 a gram for even the best wax at 80%. This is LEO BS the same way they inflate the estimates of drug hauls in order to burden growers with a higher tax bill.

    Just your quotes alone show you know little about the MMJ movement.

    Take your lies elsewhere. You will never stop this movement.

  23. hey "shut down the Cannabis Cup."
    Ohio police: Teen ran drug ring that grossed $20,000 a month
    By Maggie Schneider, CNN
    updated 11:00 AM EDT, Tue July 17, 2012
    The student, whose identity will not be revealed because he is a juvenile, allegedly had six employees selling marijuana outside school grounds.
    so tell me at what age did you start your kids smoking pot?
    then here is this one.
    Australia Drug Bust Seizes $525 Million Of Heroin And Methamphetamine
    you druggies will not be happy till you have destroyed this planet with drugged out face eating supper zombies.

    Zombie alert: bath salts
    zombie behavior
    The summer of naked bath salts-induced attacks continues apace. The latest abuser of the powerful hallucinogen was a brand-new mother in Altoona, Pa., who couldn’t wait until she had left the maternity ward to smoke a dose, strip naked, and embark on a violent rampage.
    The Altoona Mirror reports that on June 17, two days after giving birth, 31-year-old Carla Murphy was found by a nurse rolling around on a shower floor naked and confused. When roused, Murphy sprung into frenetic action, taking off down the hall, screaming profanities and kicking and punching whoever crossed her path.
    Hospital medical personnel were able to restrain her long enough to administer the anti-psychotic drug Haldol. But before the medication kicked in, Murphy became more aggressive, ultimately leaving staff no alternative but to summon police, who managed to get her back to her bed but not before she had bitten one of the officers.

  24. Another Zombie Face Eater ?
    After the well publicised face eating idiot,many people seem to be huffing,fucking mushroom spores?
    What the fuck,this diabolical demand for any kind of drug,its an hallucinogenic?Now we got another one in the news who dismembered a parrots claw to see what it would taste like,they also found dismembered flys and snails?Man,what is going on?


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