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

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

"Los Damasos" Ordered the Murder of Javier Valdez

Translated by Yaqui for Borderland Beat from: Riodoce

On the One Year anniversary of the murder of Javier Valdez FEADLE confirms the perpetrators of his assassination; "Los Damasos" ; One Theory.....................

By: Alejandro Monjardin
May 15, 2018

10 weeks after the murder of Javier Valdez, 2 of the alleged perpetrators of the crime had been named. On July 28  last year, a protected witness pointed them out after having a conversation in which they allegedly spoke of their involvement in the murder; and the third person was identified in September through security camera images.

Almost a year after the murder, the Special Prosecutor for Crimes against Freedom of Expression (FEADLE) arrested one of the alleged perpetrators but has yet to execute an arrest warrant against another that is already detained for another offense. According to FEADLE, the witness went to make a statement out of fear, because he had been threatened.

The witness named three suspects: Heriberto Picos Barraza, "El Koala", Juan Francisco Peaks Barrueto , "El Quillo" , and Luis Idelfonso Sánchez Romero, "El Diablo".

The murder scene on May 15, 2017 of Javier Valdez, Acclaimed Journalist and Co-Founder of Riodoce (12 Rivers) Assassinated with 12 Bullets outside his office for publishing ''Sensative" Narco News in his own backyard. He refused to be silenced. RIP: Javier Valdez, age 50, one of our heroes.   

"El Koala"

To this date, the prosecution had established that there were two shooters tied to the attack on Javier Valdez, co-founder of this publication, Riodoce. It is widely believed he was purposely assassinated for his journalistic work highlighting organized crime and narco trafficking activities, particularly local events. He wrote several books on the subject, was known to be outspoken on the subject in the face of continued threats and was an internationally award winning journalist. 

On Monday May 22,  investigative experts conducted a recreation of events.

The investigative tests were carried out on the same day of the week that Javier Valdez was killed and  at the same time and place to recreate the most realistic means possible of the murder.

In recreation, the prosecution established the mechanics of the facts: from the way the gray Versa vehicle blocked Javier's way on the street right near the offices of Riodoce to the way one man got out of another car and shot him and the position of the assassins at the time shooting.

Until then,  FEADLE's  lines of investigation involved Javier's research and journalistic work and clues from one vehicle the assassins abandoned and was found to be stolen. 

On June 13, 2017  FEADLE offered a reward of up to $1,500,000  pesos for anyone who could provide information leading to the capture of suspects.

Sometime during those days, "El Quillo" and "El Koala" invited some of their cousins for drinks, in the community of San Javier, San Ignacio. In an area known as La Lomita, "El Quillo" started talking about the murder of journalist and the trouble something he had published was causing to the people of Eldorado.

"Mini Lic" Turned himself into to US Authorities at Mexicali / Calexico, Ca
His Father "El Licenciado" was taken into Custody in Mexico City last Year.
According to the cousin who is now the protected witness "El Quillo" showed them the  silver plated pistol with the image of Damaso Lopez Nunez , "El Licenciado" on its grips  ; and Damaso Serrano Lopez, "El Mini Lic" , which he had received as payment for the murder.

Two weeks later they met again and this time they told him that they had to burn the gray Versa because things had gotten complicated. After that time the two criminals threatened the witness and that was when he decided to go to the authorities to make statements and ask for protection.

After the murder, "El Quillo" and "El  Koala" continued to commit crimes together; and "El Diablo" left the state of Sinaloa after he allegedly misled "El Quillo" with the sale of a truck and they quarreled , then fought.

A week after the murder of Javier Valdez on May 26, "El Quillo" and "El Koala" set up a roadblock on Highway 20 to ambush and or kidnap "contras" but there was a confrontation with the Army that ended with five detainees, one dead criminal and two soldiers wounded.

"El Quillo" and "El Koala" managed to escape the shooting; as they also did on June 5 in Mazatlan.
That day they arrived in convoy to a motel where they were intercepted by members of the State Police, who captured five other criminals.

On August 24, "El Quillo" was arrested in Mexicali in possession of firearms when he ran a stop sign at an excessive rate of speed.

In September, the protected witness extended his statement and provided additional information on the criminal activities of his relatives.  On that occasion, he identified Luis Idelfonso Sánchez Romero, "El Diablo", as another participant.

The investigators showed images in which they observed a man getting out of  Javier's car and he takes off gloves and then gets into the gray Versa. Images were obtained from a surveillance camera that captured the moment when the car rams into an abutment, minutes after the murder of Javier Valdez.

Two days later the car was identified but "El Diablo" and another man were found burned inside a vehicle in Colonia Moctezuma in San Luis Rio Colorado, Sonora on Sept 29, 2017. "El Diablo" was calcinated; along with another man as  identified with DNA tests; it was not until February 21, 2018 that  the prosecution obtained the DNA results and confirmed the identity of "El Diablo" and his companion, Ricardo Romero Landeros.

With the death of Luis Idelfonso Sánchez Romero, "El Diablo", one of the three alleged perpetrators of the murder of Javier Valdez, negates criminal action against him . The Special Prosecutor for Crimes against Freedom of Expression (FEADLE) had an arrest warrant against him, but asked the judge to annul it.

According to the FEADLE, "El Diablo" and his companion were traveling in the same grey Versa in which was involved in the murder of Javier. According to the investigators, he was the one who shot the journalist and then got into Javier's car.

"El Diablo": Dead but Not Forgotten

As he fled the scene of the murder he crashed and fell from his car and  jumped into the gray Versa in which "El Quillo" and "El Koala" were driving as the get away vehicle.

Almost a year after the murder, the Special Prosecutor for Crimes against Freedom of Expression (FEADLE) arrested one of the alleged perpetrators but has yet to execute an arrest warrant against another that is already detained for another offense.

With wire tapped calls made by "El Koala" with relatives, prosecutors managed to locate him in the city of Tijuana.

On April 3 this year, a group of investigating officers began to watch him for a week at the home where he lived in Colonia Pedregal de Santa Julia.

According to the report of the agents and made known to the judge, "El Koala" left every day from his home at 6:15 am accompanied by two others and returned at 4:00 pm. The alleged offender apparently worked in construction.

Monday, April 23, 2018 at 4:30 pm, officers of the Federal Police captured him pursuant to an arrest warrant.

The next day he was transferred to Culiacan, Sinaloa and presented before the Judge of Control for the crime of premeditated murder with advantage. Sunday, the 29th concluded the initial hearing and the judge linked him to the charges and ordered that for security purposes "El Koala" be admitted to the Federal Center for Social Rehabilitation of Guasave.

"El Quillo" taken into custody in Tijuana, BC . ''El Quillo" is  still held in a prison in Tijuana without the arrest warrant for the murder of Javier being executed.

The Fiscalia was able to identify with the security images that captured the moment when he got out of Javier's car  lower  and the grey Versa approaches. They were shown to the protected witness, who gave confirmed the identity. The images also reveal the use of gloves to leave no trace of fingerprints.

Key Dates:

The Fiscalia was able to identify with the security images that captured the moment when he got out of Javier's car  lower  and the grey Versa approaches. They were shown to the protected witness, who gave confirmed the identity. The images also reveal the use of gloves to leave no trace of fingerprints.

In April last year, "El Diablo" participated with 'El Quillo" in a clash in Elota, who fired a 50 caliber Barret rifle. That day "El Diablo" fled in a boat that took him to Playa Ponce in the Municipality of  Eldorado.

The FEADLE continue to investigate the activities of "El  Diablo" to obtain evidence that can be used against "El Koala" and "El Quillo" .

"El Quillo" is  still being held in a prison in Tijuana without an arrest warrant for the murder of Javier Valdez.


  1. This just shows you how inefficient the criminal process is in Mexico. What’s up with these crack head killers? A gun with images of Lic and Mini Lic on a pistol was the payment? How gay is that???? Wanted idiots driving fast and running stop signs? Seriously, if you’re going to be a criminal, take that shot serious or go work in the Coca-Cola bottling center!
    Cholo 7

    1. Not all criminals are created equally I guess.

    2. A pistol as a payment for murder of a prominent man... straight scumbags

    3. At least the reporter did not get killed a pedradas. I mean stoned to death.

    4. I was thinking the gun was more of a confirmation of the main person asking for the hit. Like el lic is asking for this favor, here is his gun to prove that if these "favor" is not done he wont ask again, but then again i read he still got up at 6 in the morning to work in construction ( in tj lol). So yeah he was a real lowlife scumbag.

  2. I’m surprised he wasn’t arrested in the community of Sanchez Tadoabada in Tijuana. Seems most bad things happen in that community.

  3. No pos ora si, le quemaron todo el horno al Diablo
    Por andar ahi de caliente

  4. Dumbasses don't know how to be a professional!

  5. ditball shitbags, they need to be gutted and shot dead

  6. Why not issue the warrant, since he was part of killing Mr. Valdez, what is so hard about that? Unless the judge is waiting for a bribe to set the killer free. Who cooked El Diablo in the Versa?

    1. What bribe?
      The article stated he was working in construction. Goes to show he had to revert to what common folks do (9-5) job to eat.
      I guess being a bad ass for pennies is what many don’t understand.They like many are the fall guys for those who get little to nothing when caught.
      Sure he is kicking himself in the head for his irrational actions / behavior.


    2. The judge does not work in construction, he is merely waiting to be bribed, so he does not have to issue an arrest warrant. Luna Apaghta

  7. @e42 the judge is waiting to be paid off or why isnt the 3rd guy charged with the murder Javier.

  8. LOL he got a silver plated gun with the bosses image on it as payment? Back to the 9-5 job, at least he got a great collector's item for murdering an innocent person.

  9. The chapitos got pissed at the damasos for killing Javier cause they don't roll like that they got respect one thing El Chapo left is codes of how to work even tho some of his people don't follow the rules like in juarez the local sicarios recruited got a total different mentality from the Hitman from sinaloa they got no rrspect for anybody
    El 100 o El 2x50

  10. 3:25 no mames 4 coras,
    pinchis apoditos tan pendejos.
    Atentamente el 5 veintes.
    I guess it is all "la clave",
    --mejor clavatela por el pedorro...

    1. 11:03 lo uniko que te voy a clavar son estas siete pulgadas

    2. Chapo's trial brought me here.. i have never in my life laugh so hard at a comment. this shit has me in tears

  11. I thought Snitchaloa didn't kill innocents ? Where are the CDS groupies ?

    1. Unfortunately, he wasn’t an “innocent” he was in communication with many narco families and was neck deep in that life. Not saying he was a bad guy or deserved an early demise. Stating that he was mixed up and reporting what his “insiders” were feeding him, from one faction attempting to use his him as another tool, to destroy another faction. It’s like Democrats using CNN to attack republicans or something like that.

      An innocent is someone who has zero interest or activity in the narco business/politics. Someone who works, pays bills, and takes care of their family. without getting anywhere near the narcos.

  12. El Diablo was cooked in the Versa, because he botched the killing of Valdez, he left to much evidence, and his fellow members had to torch him.

    1. 7:01 if he was torched,
      how do you know if you got the wrong guy?


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