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

Friday, October 1, 2021

Marines Captain Who Promised To Clean Up Police, Accused Of Working For Narcos, Obregón, Sonora

"HEARST" and "Sol Prendido" for Borderland Beat 

Seven printed banners directed to three chiefs of Police and Municipal Transit, were placed at various locations within the city of Obregón, in the municipality of Cajeme, in the state of Sonora. 

On September 29, 2021, starting at 9:00 pm at night, white banners began to appear at various locations across Obregón city. One appeared at Secundaria Técnica (Technical High School) #2, others were reported at Secundaria Técnica (Technical High School) #56, in the Ampliación Miravalle neighborhood. They also found one hung on the international highway overpass, as well as in Otancahui and Guerrero streets, on the outskirts of a private school.

All the banners were made of white canvas with professionally-printed black, red and yellow lettering, allegedly with the same message written on all of them. Municipal Police officers arrived at the various reported locations and removed the banners. 

In the clearest photo available of a banner, the sign reads as follows, as translated by Sol Prendido: 

Violence in the city of Cajeme just doesn’t end. Public Security Director Cándido Tarango is in agreement with the criminals within the Municipal Police corporations. It’s not enough for them to snatch the lives of innocent civilians. 

They’re also in charge of kidnapping and extorting the citizenry. Enough already! The citizens of Cajeme insist on the immediate removal of Cándido Tarango Velazquez. Let’s not forget to mention also his subordinates, the inspector Adan Valenzuela. 

He’s in charge of collecting a protection fee with the water supply. Just as he pays a preset fee for the drug trafficking for Mr. Tarango. The other individual who is also involved in the world of drug traffickers is the official Chava Iriarte. Mr. President and the State Governor, please do something for the city of Cajeme. Enough already! 

Adan Valenzuela Cruz is the accumulator of deaths in Ciudad Obregón. 

Whether these are “narco mantas”, or narco message signs, is unknown as it is possible that a cartel is not behind the operation which placed the seven banners.

A photo of one of the men accused in the message, named Adan Valenzuela Cruz, is printed in the lower right hand corner of the banners. When you google the name “Adan Valenzuela Cruz”, the first image result appears to match the photo printed on the banner. The photo was taken on January 07, 2007 at a merit award ceremony in which Mayor Francisco Villanueva Salazar personally handed out the awards to 28 different police officers, which was covered by here

In the InfoCajeme article, it lists out the full name of Valenzuela as “Raúl Adán Valenzuela Cruz” and states that he received the award alongside a dozen others specifically for “relevant events”.

Cándido Tarango Velázquez became the Commissioner of Municipal Police for Cajeme in November 2020. He was appointed following the resignation of the former commissioner of police Francisco Cano Castro, who took a month-long “vacation period” prior to actually turning in his resignation papers,  that the city council was kept in the dark about.  

After his appointment to commissioner of police was confirmed, Cándido Tarango, the former Captain of the Paratrooper Marine Infantry Frigate, said that the police department needed the Navy to intervene to regain the peace for the people of Cajeme. As of his arrival, he said, there will be quick, precise and forceful results in the reduction of crimes, and will add his ability to bring peace to the citizens. Cajeme is apparently a quiet city, he said, and to achieve results all the work arrangements of the Municipal Police will be modified.

Two months later, in January 2021, Cándido Tarango re-affirmed that “Because police officers could be in collusion with organized crime, changes will be made in all police officers and lines of investigation will be opened against the officers.” 

In March 2021, an investigation was opened into a Cajeme Municipal officer who allegedly killed his ex-wife, Karina Alejandra. 

Reportedly there was a documented history of feminicidal violence from the officer in question. Months before the officer allegedly killed her, Karina had tried to file a report about a violent incident that had just occurred with two municipal officers. She told the officers that her ex-husband had tried to suffocate her to death with a pillow and then violently attacked her. Karina told her family that her complaint was not received, nor was she given receipt documenting her report had been filed by the officers, which is what standard procedure dictates the officers should have done. 

The police officer then went on to allegedly kill Karina, and yet despite the accusations of homicide, the officer was allowed to continue working. Cándido Tarango defended this decision saying that until guilt was found, the officer would continue working “because he is a municipal police officer.” 

Also in March 2021, video of Commissioner Cándido Tarango snatching a young woman's cell phone out of her hand caused controversy online. Velázquez said the incident occured when he realized the daughter of a man he was questioning was recording their conversation near the Álvaro Obregón Dam. Velázquez publicly apologized for the incident following the footage gaining traction in social media. 

In April 2021, journalist Francisco González Bolón wrote an opinion piece for Diario del Yaqui citing that “At least 33 people have been killed in just 13 days of April, while another 11, approximately, have been injured in attacks by organized crime.”

“An example: almost every morning at the Cócorit police station, gunshots of all calibers are heard. However, in the police corporations they say they do not know anything about this delicate matter and when asked why they do not go to make rounds in the community, a State Police responds that they only work from 8 in the morning to 8 at night. That is to say, after that time the Cajemense community remains at the mercy of God.”

“It is assumed that the Captain of the Marine Infantry Frigate, Paratrooper Cándido Tarango Velázquez, arrived in Cajeme with all the experience to attack crime, but has stood out more for snatching phones from the young women who record their actions [...] Over and over again they say that they are going to coordinate more or that they are going to rethink the strategies to return peace to the citizens, but so far the only thing that has been seen is the impunity with which the violent ones are acting one day and the another too. Are they unable or unwilling to comply with the obligation to protect the population?” 

Then this month of September 2021, Cándido Tarango was reappointed as the Cajeme Municipal Police Commissioner by the new mayor despite widespread citizen complaints. During his time as commissioner, Cajeme did not see a reduction of high-impact crimes such as homicides and femicides. The new Mayor Javier Lamarque Cano said in response “We must give him an opportunity to see if things improve now with the new municipal government.”

A week or so later, the mayor again was pressed to respond to widespread criticism of Commissioner Cándido Tarango Velázquez. He stated that there is no time to evaluate the Commissioner as "It is very difficult to know how you are going to label or value him, when he does not have a time or a path to have followed his work, I think we should give him a space and a time," he explained.

A city council member seemed to finally outline the time in which Cándido Tarango Velázquez has left to prove himself capable of reducing crime before he will be removed. The councilmember said "I calculate that we will wait three months. If in three months he does not give results, we will have to recommend that our colleague be moved, […] He already has time, if he comments that they did not give him equipment or there was no budget, then no longer, the conditions are already in place and it seems reasonable to me those three months.” 

Then in what may come as the killing blow to Cándido Tarango’s term as commissioner, just two days after his three month deadline was outlines, the Commissioner found himself having to announced that ten or more Cajeme municipal officers were currently being investigated by the the State Attorney General's Office (FGJE) for being involved in kidnapping. 

Well, were these officer perpetrated kidnapping occuring during the time Cándido Tarango was in charge? Full details on all of the accused have not been released yet. But one of the cases that does have details available involved an incident that took place in March 2021, a full five months into Cándido Tarango’s time as commissioner. 

Officer Jonathan Ernesto “N” was charged and placed in preventive custody for the crime of aggravated kidnapping. His charges relate to the case of  a male person was violently deprived of his liberty by persons carrying firearms in the Marte R. Gómez neighborhood .

He was transferred to a home where he remained in captivity for several days, while his captors negotiated his freedom with relatives, from whom they requested a ransom payment, which was eventually paid and the person was released. 

Although it is not outright stated, the implication of multiple other non-police armed men being involved in both the abduction and captivity seems to imply organized crime was behind the kidnapping, whether they were a small local kidnapping gang or a large transnational criminal organization is unknown at this time. 

Sources: Tribuna, Diario del Yaqui, Opinión Sonora, Sonora Presente, Sonora Informativo, Sonora ViolentoSonora Extrema,

Cándido Tarango Sources: Expreso Article 1, Article 2, Article 3, Diario Yaqui Article 1, Article 2, Article 3, Article 4, Article 5, Article 6, Article 7 


  1. Hey da Rubio
    Sol woke up and is doing fine
    6 feet apart no hugs.
    Hearst is healthy and is doing fine.
    6 feet apart no hugs.

  2. Cds is a mess..
    They are snitching on each other now that they split up.
    More government officials will be exposed In Sonora for helping cds
    There's been mantas of other officials lately.


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