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

Saturday, March 21, 2020

Police Chief in Veracruz Killed for Refusing to Support the CJNG

"Morogris" for Borderland Beat
Raymundo Elmer Prior Reyes (left); his vehicle after the attack (right)
Raymundo Elmer Prior Reyes, the municipal police chief of San Juan Evangelista, Veracruz, was murdered by suspected members of the Jalisco New Generation Cartel (CJNG), a criminal group based in Jalisco but with presence in several states across Mexico, including Veracruz. 

According to police reports, Raymundo was killed as he drove his Ford pick-up truck through a highway near La Cerquilla rural community. A group of armed suspects tried to force him to a stop, but the police chief sped up to lose trace of them. He eventually lost control of his vehicle after it drove off the highway. The gunmen finished him off on the side of the road. His bullet-ridden body was found inside the vehicle.

There has been a wave of assassinations of people linked to the municipality of San Juan Evangelista in recent months. Last year, the police chief who proceeded Raymundo was killed. A few days later, the town's ex-mayor was killed too. Investigators suspect Raymundo and others were killed for refusing to support the CJNG, who holds a stronghold in San Juan Evangelista.

Early life and career
Raymundo Elmer Prior Reyes was born in Ixhuatlán de Madero, Vercruz. In 1995, he was appointed as the mayor of his hometown as a member of the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI). He held the role until 1997.

After his stint in politics, Raymundo held multiple roles as a police officer in Veracruz. He was an officer of the now-extinct Federal Judicial Police (PJF) and a commander in the Veracruz State Police in multiple cities across the state. Among the notable cases he presided over was the November 2006 murder of Veracruz cattle rancher and cacique (indigenous leader) Cirilo Vázquez Lagunes. 

In his latest role before presiding over San Juan Evangelista's police force, Raymundo was a commander in Veracruz's Institute of Auxiliary Police and Heritage Protection (IPAX). He held the role until December 2018.

CJNG in San Juan Evangelista
The CJNG first arrived in Veracruz in 2011 and made their first public appearance by carrying out large public acts of violence to intimidate their turf rivals, Los Zetas. Over the years, the CJNG expanded under their leader Nemesio Oseguera Cervantes ("El Mencho") and became one of the largest criminal groups in Mexico alongside the Sinaloa Cartel.

In December 2019, Veracruz's Secretary of Public Safety (SSP) chief Hugo Gutiérrez Maldonado confirmed that the municipalities of Acayucan, Sayula de Alemán, Hueyapan de Ocampo, Oteapan and San Juan Evangelista, were controlled by the CJNG.

José Roberto Sánchez Cortés ("El 80"), the CJNG leader in Veracruz
The CJNG regional boss of San Juan Evangelista and of the other municipalities mentioned was Abraham Morales Trinidad ("Doble Cero"). He reported directly to José Roberto Sánchez Cortés ("El 80"), the leader of the CJNG in Veracruz. Under Doble Cero was CJNG lieutenant Félix Hernández ("El Garrobo").

Authorities confirmed the arrests of CJNG members in December 2019 caused a major regrouping in the CJNG and motivated the rival Zetas cartel to push for an incursion in the region.

At around 11:00 a.m. on 17 March 2020, Raymundo was killed while he drove his Ford Lobo pick-up truck through federal highway Sayula-Ciudad Alemán in the municipality of San Juan Evangelista. Gunmen tried to force him to a stop but the police chief sped up to try to lose trace of the assassins. During the chase, he lost control of his vehicle and drove it the side of the highway. The gunmen finished him off while inside his vehicle. None of them have been arrest.

Raymundo was murdered for not supporting the CJNG's activities in the area. It is rumored that he refused to allow the CJNG's cattle theft operations and kidnappings in the area. His dispute with the CJNG dates back to August 2019, when police officers working under him detained 40 CJNG members who were looting ranches in the municipalities of Playa Vicente, Azueta, Isla, Rodríguez Clara (in Veracruz) and several others along the border with Oaxaca.

The victim's corpse, as found by authorities
Raymundo is the second municipal police chief killed in San Juan Evangelista in about a year. On 6 February 2019, police chief Mariano Rodríguez Pérez (age 53) was killed in a drive-by shooting. Raymundo attended his funeral and succeeded him as the town's police chief.  It was suspected that Rodríguez Pérez was killed for not supporting the interests of the CJNG in southern Veracruz just like Raymundo.

A few days after Rodríguez Pérez's death, on 14 February, former San Juan Evanglista mayor Adalbero Moreno Lara (age 56) was killed by gunmen in a drive-by shooting. His assassins left a written message inside his vehicle. The ex-mayor had survived a previous attempt on his life in 2015, when gunmen tried to kidnap him. It would not have been hard to imagine that Raymundo was probably next on the CJNG's list.

Sources: Since multiple sources were used for this report, I've added them as links in the body paragraphs for better readability. Most sources are from outlets in Veracruz, Mexico.


  1. A clean officer doing his job killed just because he said no to CJNG, another reason this Cartel needs to be killed on the spot, where's the human Rights commission, when good cops get killed?

    1. Human rights in Mexico 😂

    2. 3:56 PM Good cops don't exist. CJNG doesn't exist outside Jalisco anything outside of that state are allies that is it. I rather have the Jaliscos running my town then what is going to replace them. I wish you grew the balls to go and live in a town run by the Viagras I doubt you would last the weekend. Your wish will most likely come true as Morena, El Peje are actively supporting Carteles Unidos, CDS, CDSRDL that is why Los Chaputos and El Marrano were let go.

    3. Clean probably not they were probably supporting Zzz

    4. The world doesn't care about what's happening in Mexico. Human rights in Mexico is a joke. The decades of human rights abuses clearly illustrates that.
      Let's not forget how independent investigators for the disappearances of the students were not allowed access to findings. Along with the resources needed to conduct such investigations.
      Many simply left due to the political systems interference.

    5. If he was a clean cop I feel sad for his family.

      But after reading other storys here I wonder
      sorry for being cynical but I wonder if he worked for the other side

      Does anyone here know the truth ?
      How do they know all this about his death if he was found all alone
      Who told them this is how he was killed ? or is it a guess
      to me it sounds like people were with him when this went down. or left a message why he is dead
      An awefull lot of details are missing

      hope viewers that knows more about him can tell us

      Thanks BB

    6. Human rights commission? In Mexico? Hahahaha hahaha!!!

    7. It's not just cjng, EVERY cartel does it
      The thing is, cjng is expanding
      Human rights Commission don't exist in 🇲🇽

    8. No CJNG or Zetas are mlm ore.feared than the real Diablo de Veracruz,
      Arturo Bermudez Zurita the former SSP of the state who was released to continue his fight for freedom on the loose, he must have known every police officer during his 30 years of service to mafiosos in the government of Veracruz.

  2. Praying the U.S. intervenes and hunts these cowards down like the dogs they are. To hell with AMLO and Mexican sovereignty. Hunt the bastards down and string up by the nearest tree. Send a message that their kind isn’t going to be tolerated anymore...oh wait...forgot - Mexican corruption will ensure that they‘re large and in-charge. Exactly why I pray the U.S. does something - because I know my own country and won’t!!!

    1. Oh shit, super Rambo is on BB and he lives in Mexico

    2. People need to be respectful when matters of foreign intrusion are being tested.
      U wouldn't want this intrusion in your backyard. We must respect Mexico's sovereignty like that of any government.
      There are many countries that US interests are being displayed. Despite its unfavorable human rights violations.


  3. Amazing. I’m not sure that the police or citizens would even care if they were transporting drugs. Why do they have to take advantage of ranchers and campesinos for god’s sake.

  4. This Amlo fault, not supporting law enforcement. God Bless that man and is poor family. I am an American, it hurts me to see honest, brave law enforcement killed. I pray for his family and all the innocent good Mexicans. Amlo wake up

  5. Come on Amlo do something, cartel is killing all good people

  6. So has cjng made and gain in Veracruz since entering in '11?

  7. What a shame. The only guy trying to do the right thing gets killed. Until you get a top down crack down on corruption and intimidation this will continue. Theres many officials who want to do good, but know that their life is on the line and end up "corrupt". Corruption, collusion, violence, and drug money are so ingrained in Mexico that they do need American help to root it out and it will take years... that's if there is the WILL to root it out...

  8. Mexico president should take a lesson on what it is to lead.
    God speed Mr. Reyes for standing up to the cartel.
    Now the stupid president won't do a thing about this.
    No leadership in Mexico because the people are all stupid 3rd grade educations

    1. 5:46 the stupid commenter attacks again...
      bring back EPN, or FECAL?

  9. Government is in cooperation with cartels. No other explanation. Doing nothing while honest policemen and soldiers are being killed.

  10. Time for the government to pay for bullet proof vehicles for all police officers.

    1. 2:22 bulletproof did not save Zapata,
      how much would you gain in commissions?
      Genarco garcia luna made millions of dollars

  11. It's basically suicide to be a none corrupt law enforcement person in Mexico


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