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on the border line between the US and Mexico

Monday, August 23, 2021

Affidavit: Guns legally bought in NM ‘destined’ to Mexican cartel

By Buggs for Borderland Beat

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — When authorities stopped an SUV in the heart of Mexico in June they found several assault-style rifles hidden in the trunk. Authorities say the guns were bought at gun stores across southern New Mexico and destined for a cartel embroiled in a turf war 1,000 miles below the border.

Court records show that many of the guns bought by the alleged smuggling ring have not been recovered.

Jesus Barron-Barrios, 33; his wife, Ana Barron 30; Mayra Madrid; Madrid’s boyfriend, Jose Orona; and Victor Fierro-Caro are charged in an alleged plot to export the legally-bought guns to members of Cartel de Jalisco Nueva Generacion who, according to court records, are “disputing territory” in Zacatecas, Mexico.

All four are in custody on charges including conspiracy to export firearms from the U.S. to Mexico, false statements in the acquisition of firearms, unlawful dealing in firearms and possession of firearms by a felon.

Monroe Roberts, owner of MR Arms in Las Cruces where four of the guns were bought, said they follow the law when it comes to gun sales.

“We don’t just sell guns to anybody… We check them out and they get approved, then we sell them a gun,” Roberts said. “… Nobody likes to see this stuff happen. That’s not right by any stroke of the imagination.”

Roberts said he couldn’t comment on the purchases as they get inquiries by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives “all the time” but are never told anything specific by the agents.

“Unfortunately, being as close to the border as we are, I’m sure these things happen,” he said. Roberts later added, “How much it happens, we don’t know.”

At least 12 guns reportedly bought by the group between 2018 and 2021 had not been recovered by authorities.

According to a criminal complaint filed in U.S. District Court:

On June 7, Mexican National Guard officers stopped a woman, a Mexican national, driving an SUV in Fresnillo, Mexico, and a dog found seven assault-style rifles and gun parts hidden inside.

The woman’s daughter was recorded driving the SUV into the U.S. through Columbus on June 4 and returning to Mexico the same day. When she was stopped in Fresnillo — 900 miles south of Columbus — the woman had her 13-year-old son in the SUV, who lived in Deming.

The Mexican National Guard told the ATF the guns were “destined” for CJNG cartel members. ATF agents found all of the guns had been bought by Ana Barron, Madrid or Fierro-Caro — often on the same day — and all but one rifle was bought over a seven-day period in late May.

Agents believe there was a “strong indication” the guns were bought to be trafficked to Mexico and the type of rifles are “constantly being demanded” by cartels.

The owner of MR Arms told agents Madrid and Fierro-Caro came in hours apart on May 22 and bought two rifles each. A confidential source told agents that, in a six-month period, he had bought five guns — including two AK-47s — from MR Arms, DK Guns and Pawn in Silver City and Larry’s Pawn in Deming for Jesus Barron, also known as “The Italian.”

The man, who ATF alleges is a “prohibited possessor of firearms,” said he met Barron through high school friend Orona, also known as “Pepe,” who lived in Palomas, Mexico. The man said in one incident he had a few beers with Jesus Barron and Orona in Palomas before Barron drove him, Orona and Madrid to MR Arms.

He told agents Jesus Barron gave him money to buy two rifles and, afterward, Madrid went in and bought two rifles. The man said they were paid $100 extra for each gun and he knew the guns ended up “farther down” in Mexico but didn’t know who took them there.

Orona told agents Jesus Barron paid him $500 for driving the firearms across the border from Columbus into Palomas. Agents found videos on the confidential source’s phone of himself, Orona and Jesus Barron drinking beers in a home.

Agents also found photos of the smuggled guns and the flooring and walls matched those seen in a photo Ana Barron posted on Facebook. The man told agents he didn’t believe Ana Barron was involved in the gun smuggling.

Agents learned that, between October 2018 and July 2019 that Ana Barron bought nine assault-style rifles and one pistol from D.A.M. Ammo and Las Cruces Motorsports in Las Cruces.

It is unclear what became of those guns or two AK-47 rifles bought by Fierro-Caro in July 2021. Agents searched the Barrons’ home in Deming and found no guns but seized five phones, a DVR, a laptop and a flash drive.

By: Matthew Reisen / Albuquerque Journal Staff Writer


  1. Would love to have M4 this administration left in Afghanistan. Bid a lot of those weapons end up in Mexico

  2. Anyone has Obradors email or cabinet members email addresses? Send this article from the Albuquerque Journal.
    See Obrador how guns come in, your customs officers are doing a bad job of letting guns into Mexico, but quick to sue the gun manufacturer.

  3. Biden should add manpower to the ATF to fine or close down gun shops who sell to straw buyers they act stupid like they don't know

    1. We should sue alcohol companies when people do dumb shit drunk driving, domestic abuse and whatever else.they know people are gonna drink and do this stuff....rite??? Acting like they don't know...

  4. Buggs, thank you for article. Nice seeing you. -h


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