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

Sunday, February 27, 2022

CDG Los Metros Destroy Surveillance Cameras in Series of Highly Coordinated Attacks in Reynosa and Ribereña

"Itzli" and "HEARST" for Borderland Beat 

Beginning the night of February 24, 2022, the government run video surveillance system in Reynosa, Tamaulipas has been under attack by members of the Los Metros faction of the Gulf Cartel.

Prelude to Destruction

On Thursday, February 24, 2022, which is Flag Day in Mexico, the Governor of the state of Tamaulipas Francisco García Cabeza de Vaca inaugurated a three day international forum called "Strengthening Police Capabilities 2022" at the state’s University of Security and Justice.

During part of his speech, the governor spoke about the C-5 headquarters in Reynosa. 

C-5 is a government program involved in emergency services dispatch as well as a surveillance camera system. Each Mexican state has their own C-5 program, and in the state of Tamaulipas, the C-5 program has over 5,000 cameras across 25 municipalities. 

Initial Attack on Cameras

Just hours after the governor’s speech, the very same cameras that Cabeza de Vaca praised came under direct attack. At around 9:00 PM that same day, armed men began targeting cameras, shooting them down in La Ribereña, which is in the northwestern region of the state, which lies directly on the US-Mexico border. 

Then, just shortly before midnight, citizens reported the sound of gunshots in the city of Reynosa. There was initial uncertainty as to the cause of these gunshots, with some Twitter users assuming rival cartel groups were fighting in the city.

Video Source: Reynosa Codigo Rojo

Video Source: Reynosa Codigo Rojo

Video Source: Reynosa Codigo Rojo

In time it became clear that armed men were shooting down surveillance cameras, just as had been done in La Ribereña region. The men were also said to be stealing vehicles, including cargo trucks and dump trucks, which were then used to knock over the poles to which the cameras were attached, be it backing into them or attaching chains and pulling them down. 

The following is Borderland Beat’s documentation of the tweets which alleged gunfire in specific locations within Reynosa during this night. There were evidently multiple groups of armed men operating at the same time as tweets indicate that at multiple points during the night cameras were being shot down at the same moment in two different parts of the city. 

Based on later analysis of the times and locations, the shootings have been grouped in locational clusters which may have been hit by the same group of armed men. The timestamp of each event below hyperlinks to the tweet which claims there is currently gunfire in the area.

Group 1

  1. 11:48 PM Lomas del Real Jarachina del Sur

  2. 11:51 PM Puerta del Sol 

  3. 11:57 PM Jarachina del Sur Tweet

  4. 11:57 PM Puerta Grande

  5. 12:07 AM Viaducto Street crossing

Group 2

  1. 11:50 PM Rancho Grande

  2. 11:52 PM Between Rancho Grande and Los Caracoles

  3. 12:00 AM Las Palmas

  4. 12:15 AM Rancho Grande and Caracoles

  5. 12:25 AM  Bugambilias

  6. 12:33 AM Hacienda Los Fuentes

Group 3

  1. 11:53 PM Fuentes Seccion Lomas

  2. 11:54 PM Los Cumbres

  3. 11:55 PM Los Muros

  4. 11:59 PM Lomas del Real de Jarchinas Norte

  5. 12:25 AM Jardines Coloniales

Group 4

  1. 11:56 PM Balcones de Alcala

  2. 11:56 PM La Joya

  3. 12:40 AM Almaguer

  4. 12:43 AM  Fidel Velazquez

  5. 12:44 AM Almaguer

Group 5

  1. 12:11 AM Almendros

  2. 12:21 AM Aquiles Serdan

  3. 12:24 AM Los Cavazos

The State Police were reported to be pursuing the individuals with apparently little success. Some social media users claimed that federal forces were not involved in trying to apprehend the armed men at all. 

Metal tire puncture devices, called ponchallatas, were reportedly thrown by the armed men onto the road behind them and these caused traffic issues into the following day. 

February 25 Aftermath

On the morning of February 25, 2022, initial reports about the surveillance camera damage came in. 13 were said to have been damaged in Reynosa, 4 more in the town of Miguel Aleman, one in Diaz Ordaz, and one in Camargo. Unofficial reports indicated a much higher number were damaged then what was officially reported. 

Several banners were allegedly placed by the groups of armed men who shot down the cameras.

The banners were located the next morning at various locations in Reynosa and in areas to the west. Their message reads as follows:

Mr. President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador,

All the people of the Ribeñera of the state of Tamaulipas are tired of the current government and of the Governor Francisco Garcia Cabeza de Vaca and its group called GOPES, that whenever that want, they sow terror in their path, beating, robbing, kidnaping, killing families and innocent people. We ask for your help to stop the abuse of authority and the violation of human rights.

Sincerely: The townspeople, no more…

Note, “GOPES” refers to the Special Operations Group of the Tamaulipas state police, a special forces unit that has often clashed with cartel forces.

Cartel Vengeance

The targeting of the surveillance cameras is presumed to have been done by cartel members. Whether or not this was a direct response to Cabeza de Vaca’s speech or merely a coincidence is up for debate. 

One of the online explanations for the camera shootings is that César Morfín Morfín, alias “El Primito”, the leader of the Los Metros faction of the Gulf Cartel, is lashing out due to a member of Los Metros being arrested by the GOPES and their refusal to negotiate his release.

It is also worth mentioning a tweet that occurred during the night’s chaos, which reads as follows:

Good evening for those who understand code Comandante Mono (M36) and Comandante Roke (M107) ordered all the cameras in the city of Reynosa to be knocked down that is why gunshots are heard all over Reynosa!

The individuals referred to in this message are: Carlos Humberto Acuña de los Santos, aliases “El Mono” and “M36”, the alleged plaza boss of Reynosa for Los Metros and Roque Cruz Fuentes, alias “M107”, operations chief for El Mono.

Another tweet was posted during the afternoon of Saturday, February 26, 2022, translated as follows:

Good afternoon, code for those who understand, Comandante Metro 21 (Nabor) and Comandante Metro 93 (Checo) are those put in charge of knocking down the cameras of 20 Street and Jarachina neighborhood, all of this on order of Comandante Mono (Metro 36).

In addition to the previously mentioned Carlos Humberto Acuña de los Santos, aliases “El Mono”, two more members of Los Metros are mentioned. Luis Nabor Aguilar Rubio, with the previous alias “El Shakira”, is now using the aliases Nabor and Metro 21, while the individual known as El Checo and Metro 93 has very little information reported prior to this and his real name appears to be unknown, although he has been mentioned in association with Héctor Sánchez Rivera, alias “La Mimi”, a notable member of Los Metros operating out of Reynosa. 

Second Night of Attacks

The very next night, on Friday, February 25, 2022, another round of attacks occurred, although these camera shootings were much less spread out than the previous night, with Jarachina Sur and the Technological Institute of Reynosa reporting gunshots and blockades.

Additionally, gunshots were reported in Fuentes Section Lomas and Los Cavazos. A C-5 pole was reportedly knocked over in Las Fuentes. Then a bus with students leaving the night class of the North Tamaulipas Technological University (UTT) was said to have been hijacked and used to ram a C-5 camera.

Tweets from February 25 - 26, 2022

10:39 PM Jarachina Sur shootings and blockades

10:49 PM Technological Institute of Reynosa shootings and blockades

11:12 PM  Las Fuentes Sección Lomas shootings

11:18 PM UTT bus with students aboard taken and used to ram C5 cameras

11:21 PM Las Fuentes Sección Lomas, C5 pole knocked over

12:11 AM  Los Cavazos

Morning Attacks

In a turn of events, a third round of attacks occurred, this time not under the cover of darkness but instead during the morning of February 26, 2022. Gunshots were reported in the Las Cumbres, La Cima, Los Muros, San Jose, and Vista Hermosa neighborhoods of Reynosa.

At least two cameras were knocked down, allegedly one was a C-4 camera in La Cima and the other was a C-5 camera in Casa Bella, which was located near the Secundaria 7 school.

Sources:  El Horizonte, Milenio, Reforma, El Sol de Tampico, Yahoo Noticias, Reynosa Codigo Rojo

Twitter Sources: Loba Indomable, R_CodigoRojo, ManuelH74755160, Pantronilo, Gerardo61170364


  1. Just want to say that I really appreciate the maps that HEARST adds to articles. You can also really see that the quality is improving as well, like in the map of the 5 groups

    1. Thank you!

      If you guys ever have any feedback on what I could do to make my maps easier to understand or more informative, just let me know in the comments anytime. The advice you guys give me is invaluable.

  2. This has the Morena's party name all over it. The morena party was supported by the metros and when they new governor wins it's lights out for them.

  3. Great job Itzli and HEARST, divorce Primito and Cabeza de Vaca, it is important to note that surveillance cameras in Miguel Aleman or Ribereña where also destroyed.

    El Contador Cardenas was captured again in a midnight operation in Matamoros by federal forces. El Contador Cardenas has been released before from prison, so lets wait and see what happens this time around.

  4. You think cdg will shoot down their own cameras lol

  5. 👏👏👏👏👏👏👏 Bravo. Once again you guys out did yourselves. I knew you two would hit it out the ball park and I was right. Thank you guys for all your work. It's appreciated.

  6. The sooner they kill Garcia Cabeza de Vaca, the better 🤷🏻‍♂️


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