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

Saturday, February 21, 2015

Here's the secret code a Mexican drug cartel allegedly uses to communicate

Borderland Beat posted by DD republished from Business Insider
By  Christina Sterbenz. 

To sell drugs and transport their profits, Mexican cartels need to stay off the grid. That means using ultra-secret communications.

In a recent money-laundering case in Chicago, special agent with Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) Jill Dennewitz testified against 32 members of various Mexican drug cartels.
A cell phone and charger hooked up to a battery (not shown) and a solar generator are seen following the arrest of eight men accused of serving as scouts for Mexican drug cartels in Pinal County, Arizona
The cartel members often used blackberry messenger, or BBM, according to prosecutors. In one instance, Carlos Parra-Pedroza, also known as "Walt Disney" or "Don Walt," allegedly emailed a confidential HSI informant a list of codes to use while they talked. 

When they communicate, cartels likely spend a lot of time discussing shipment amounts and prices. Therefore, they created a system of codes that correlated with numbers.

62 = 0
83 = 1
71 = 2
49 = 3
57 = 4
66 = 5
35 = 6
21 = 7
18 = 8
96 = 9

The cartel members also used coded phrases that pertained more to scheduling.
Make an appointment = let's go to the beach
Appointment was made = it's warm
Which day = [depends on the day]
I am on my way = the beer are cold
I am on my way back = I'm with my wife
I am verifying = I have diarrhea
Mercedes = ticket is complete
Hamburger = is missing/short
It's f***ed up = I like your sister
They are following me and I have money with me = let's go to the movie theater
Monday = Red
Tuesday = Yellow
Wednesday = Green
Thursday = White
Friday = Blue
Saturday = Black
Sunday = Purple

During one conversation on Aug. 21, 2014, for example, Para-Pedroza told the informant: "The red one we'll start with 2 orders .... One is of 66 62 62 and the other of 96 62 62 .... Let's see if we can work all the colors. [Name redacted] and his brother go to the beach the whole week."

That most likely means: On Monday (August 25, 2014), Looks like we'll start with two orders .... One is 500 (probably meaning $500,000) and the other one of 900 (probably meaning $900,000) .... Let's see if we can pick up the narcotics proceeds every day of the week. [Name redacted] and his brother make an appointment the whole week.

The lawsuit claims that "Walt Disney" and his brethren laundered more than $100 million in drug profits using these methods


  1. That type of code is being used everywhere, not only in Mexico. I read about something similar being used by a Hells Angels drug operation in Europe. It is stupid because in court they will know it is code, thus incriminating.

    If they were just a slight intelligent, they would make it sound like a normal conversation and change the codes every week like they change burner phones. That can be done by e-mail without being detected.

    1. Yes, the purpose of speaking in code is to not let anyone know you're speaking code so as not to draw attention. Reality is its far too difficult to communicate that way so you get what you see here in this article. We aren't talking about CIA level people.

    2. @ 9:57 shut up. Look at you trying to teach criminals how to go undetected. stupid

  2. February 15, 2015
    Barely posting something pertaining to Blackberry. These go way back. Advice for random guest. If you doing something I would not post on here with your home IP

  3. Pretty smart. guess they got new codes by now


    These codes WERE only for 15 people.
    codes are changes all the time and are not used cartel wide.

    This is from the Sinaloa gold for cash scheme trial that LUcio posted
    ten days ago. in the indictment of 313 pgs there are codes throughout

    the better read is the indictment which is posted by lucio

    1. @8:27. Lucio's article on the gold for cash scheme was excellent and as an attorney I enjoyed reading it, especially the indictment which was at a separate link. But Lucio's story did not mention the codes which are used on cartel communications - that info was contained in the indictment. Most casual readers of BB are not interested in reading a 313 page legal document so I thought this little tidbit from the indictment might interest them. Sorry you didn't like the story and thought it was "MUCH ADO ABOUT NOTHING".

  5. This is a good article giving insight to those who are unaware. Much of this information was exposed previously on episodes of "Border Wars" on National Geographic. These cartel members think no one is aware but someone always break and disclose the truth to save their own hide. Now they will head back to the drawing board and come up with another ridiculous plot. Just get jobs and allow jobs to be there for other people, stop extorting and robbing businesses and stop the nonsense.

    1. No one will have a job if the businesses have to keep shutting down because of PISO.

  6. This people have been using code forever im talking about the pager era and lets not forget the public phone booths

  7. The reader is right, the indictment is fascinating btw, but the codes are throughout
    I particularly liked creative codes "Indian Girl" for Indiana or 100 tickets for 100 thousand dollars.

    but the indictment is not at a second link, (?) it is embedded in lucio's post

    1. You are correct and I apologize for the error. There was not the usual "read more" that takes you to the second page and Lucio had said the indictment was on the second page. I didn't see the scroll bar on Indictment shown on the front page. Lucio is really getting good on his postings. I am not sure I would know how to post a story with a scrolling bar.

      So when I saw the "Cartel Gold for Cash Money SInaloa Laundering Scheme 32 defendants-Chivis Martinez" above the first page of the indictment, I just assumed it was a embedded link to the Indictment. When I clicked on it I went to the site "" and there it was.

  8. Why dont those bendekos listen to the way the english have their rhyming slang.. its pretty creative.. but why dont these cartellos just get an enenigma machine

  9. I saw once in chicago some guy writing down the tacos sold, like three tripas, dos carnitas, ocho al pastor...
    But they was not selling tacos on the place, not one, i guess everybody makes up their ''codes'' for whatever...


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