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

Monday, June 4, 2018

Criminals lurk by rail tracks for robbery like the old west

Translated by Otis B Fly-Wheel for Borderland Beat from a Milenio article

Subject Matter: Cartel robbery of trains
Recommendation: No prior subject matter knowledge required

The theft and derailing of trains is not only an issue of concern about the losses of the companies involved; it is a matter of national security, if there is a chemical spill or collisions among the communities alongside the railway routes.

Reporter: Alma Paola Wong
As if it were the old west, criminals lurk from the mountain waiting to derail and assault the freight train. They know the gaps, the shortcuts and they could have full knowledge of the railways by the way they have caused the wagons to derail in recent months. Therefore, the deployment of troops of the Gendarmerie Division of the Federal Police in the central mountainous area of ​​Veracruz can not make mistakes, because the safety of thousands of inhabitants along the train routs rely on them.

The theft from trains is not only an issue of concern about the losses of the companies; it is a matter of national security, should there be a chemical spill or collision, for the communities surrounding the train tracks.

It is midday and the sun plummets down in Acultzingo, Veracruz. The thermometer shows 36 degrees and there are no clouds on the horizon. The town, at the foot of the tracks, has become a base of operations for elements of the Gendarmerie, state security forces and the Army, in agreement with the State government of Veracruz.

The latter was installed just this weekend, a base of military police and regular troops, as part of the surveillance reinforcements.

 Officer Óscar López, commander of the Gendarmerie in Orizaba, outlined with his team the strategy for the accompaniment of a train considered a priority. It goes from south to north and will pass through three points considered high risk due to the incidence of robberies in the area: Vaquerías uno, Vaquerías dos and Huaxtitla.

The mandate is to protect all freight trains, but the tension increases before the priority ones, considered as such because they contain chemicals. In this case, the wagons carried behind the locomotive that came out 40 minutes ago from Orizaba transport chlorine, diesel and sodium hydroxide or caustic soda.

 By the time it arrives in Acultzingo, four patrols and a dozen gendarmes are already stationed along the track, and they maintain communication with the other security forces and the workers of Ferrosur, a Ferromex company responsible for cargo transport in the region. southeast of Mexico.

The train makes a stop that gendarmes did not expect. -

 Why did they stop, why the stop?

The officer insistently asks on the radio, whose callsign is Jungle .

 Immediately, Ferrosur staff responds that everything is under control, it is necessary to make maneuvers to give time to the next train.

The officer continues giving orders to completely protect the train that has stopped. The restlessness is triggered in those moments, because it is necessary to check that no criminal is crouched between the wagons or that they take advantage to raise and later vandalize the train.

 It is a populated area and there are people walking around. "They handle civilians who are hailing the trains, they know the terrain from the heights, and the progress of the trains, they place obstacles on the tracks with the purpose that the hydraulic lines will break and the emergency brakes have to be activated, that's where they take advantage of to rob the trains, "explains Felipe Carbajal, of  the Gendarmerie.

 The train resumes its journey. One is going to Vaquerías, another critical crossing because it is an unpopulated area, surrounded by mountains full of vegetation and gaps from where criminals can watch the train pass and where in recent months most of the derailments have occurred.

Another group of troops is mobilized at that point. In total, there are 44 kilometers of track that are guard some 50 elements of the Gendarmerie in Veracruz, surveillance is happening 24 hours a day. Even at night they accompany the employees of Ferrosur to make reconnaissance  in certain stretches of the road and verify that the rails have not been removed, which would cause the train to leave the tracks.

 But even if it is an unpopulated area, the danger to the population and the environment is always latent. The train is a beast of more than 25 tons running at 50 kilometers per hour, so in a derailment anything can happen. "Suppose it brings ammonia and the containers derail, the material spills.

 It would be an environmental catastrophe  for the population, here there are springs of water near the mountain,  near the municipal seat of Acultzingo ", explains police Carbajal. That is the main concern of the surrounding inhabitants, not the losses that large companies may have.

They are the ones who live in the uncertainty of not being able to leave quietly for fear that during a train robbery a shoot-out will break out, or that a container with chemicals will simply break into your home. "Criminals do not think about the damage they can cause.

 Trains have been derailed with grains and goods, but also those that bring chemicals, until now there has not been a major tragedy, but the day that happens who will protect us and who will be responsible.

 It's ugly, we have no peace of mind, "laments Isabel Reyes, a neighbor of the train tracks. Therefore, the special operation to combat the theft of goods in trains brings a little more tranquility to the people of Acultzingo, a municipality with just over 20 thousand inhabitants. "I wish they stayed indefinitely and not just for the photo," says Martha González.


  1. Anything and everything goes in Mexico.

  2. In Sonora a trained derailed over the weekend because some thieves stole the tracks. Money is scarce in Mexico for some people and this is the outcome. This is something we in the U.S. should be concerned about as middle class America is dissapearing and people in states like California who even though is the wealthiest state in the country are having hard times to make a living. It has been said that homelessnes there is increasing every year while the wealthy continue to amass fortunes!

  3. Yep, the govt has no control over anything

    1. The government members only want money, in thier pockets, while in office, they could care less of people dying.

    2. Mounted on the troke you can see like 5 different weapons, rifles, .50 cal machine gun, And a 3' hole saw!
      Mexican Melitary are amazing.

  4. Those criminals don't realize, derailing trains, can cause toxic oil spills. Endangering the area.

    1. The criminals are in danger,
      they don't give a fack about more danger.
      Even Carlos Danger did not care about hisself after a whiles.

  5. Off topic but my father would tell me stories of him going to find his drunk ass dad that would spend most of his time on the railroad that once cross through southern Coahuila - east to west of Mexico.
    The only thing the old timer ever drink was “sotol” - Mexican moonshine oh and also pulque.

    We also mention how Mexican soldiers would take his belongings.

    Como mi tio pancho villa
    Nada mas que los bandidos de ahora valen pa pura vickys.

    Anyone care to share similar stories?

  6. They can get them if they put effort into it . Don't mexico have choppers and marines ? Have somebody on every train ready to make the call . Fly in and kill their sorry asses . Wont look quite as appealing to the next would be robbers .

  7. Even if there are railroad police, they are still on the take. Nothing will ever change in Mex. Man, I love that country..

  8. Bronco Billy was chasing trains in the 80s, on the US!
    Arab Terrorist El Aurens defeated the turks before WWI to impose the will of her majesty on the Arabs, part of his campaign consisted of blowing trains, Lawrence of Arabia is still revered all over the world as are some Mexican gavilleros like Pancho Villa.
    Joseph Stalin escaped from Siberia 5 times until he got power and defeated the Czar the mencheviks, Hitler, (nothing against the Führer)
    --back on the US HOBOS used to be a famous subset of the American population, some day TV series could be made about them like the moonshiners or the Duck Commander, meanwhile there is Boxcar Willy to serenade your mexican nightmares...

  9. James Younger Gang. They r back

  10. For real Mexican train robbers, there is former president zedillo and his "butch cassidy" dick cheney, privatizing Ferrocarriles Nacionales de Mexico by stealing whole lines of it had to have a price sometime.

  11. Orale vato! Only in Mexico! jajajaja Que wayyyy les rob train.. jajajaja. Only in Mexico.

  12. 6:47 Prieto tienes el pedorro, viejillo guango.


Comments are moderated, refer to policy for more information.
Envía fotos, vídeos, notas, enlaces o información
Todo 100% Anónimo;