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

Tuesday, August 15, 2023

Rare Capture of Drug Lab in Central Mexico by Army - Tepoztlán, Morelos

By "El Huaso" for Borderland Beat

Image: @Multimagen_Info

On August 12, Secretaría de la Defensa Nacional (Sedena) soldiers raided a drug lab on a ranch in Tepoztlán, Morelos after receiving tips from civilians. This is a rare case of a drug lab in central Mexico, a region comparatively free of drug production compared to rural states like Sinaloa.

According to news site Nmas, (FGR), Sedena soldiers raided the lab in the town of Santo Domingo Ocotitlán, in the municipality of Tepoztlán, Morelos in coordination with the state Attorney Generals Office on August 12 after locals reported suspicious movements in the area. Locals specifically reported seeing vehicles carrying industrial plastic barrels entering and exiting.

They seized equipment used in the production of drugs, but as is typical, captured no one.

Mexico's Navy announced Monday that they have seized 104 drug labs across Mexico this year, in the states of Durango, Guerrero, Michoacán, Nayarit and most of all, Sinaloa. Additionally, Sedena has reported that between the start of 2023 and July 31, 2023, they have seized 527 narco labs. The Mexican government has not recently released the number of labs found in each state, but typically almost 70% are found just in the state of Sinaloa, with smaller shares coming from Michoacán and Durango.

Drug labs seized during AMLO administration by Sedena. Source.
Drug labs are rarely found in central Mexico. David Saucedo, a security analyst focused on Guanajuato, has previously told Borderland Beat that criminal groups from central Mexico like the Cártel de Santa Rosa de Lima (CSRL) actually purchase their meth from groups in Michoacán rather than produce their own. As a paradoxical result, Guanajuato, the state with by far the highest number of drug dealing cases in Mexico, has not had a lab found by authorities in over a decade.

Part of the reason for this is that most drug labs are found in rural areas away from cities, and central Mexico is more densely populated. Leaked Sedena data from between 2012 and 2019, showed that 88% of drug labs in Mexico were found in difficult to access rural areas. While in 2022 the percentage of drug labs in rural areas has shrunk slightly to 82%, most still are found outside of cities. 

An indoor drug lab. Many drug labs are outdoors. Source.
This may be for the simple reason that the chemicals used to produce drugs have a strong odor, increasing the chances of detection in urban areas.


  1. America taking Fentanyl serious.

    1. Woah Mexico and China would too


    25 tons of meth seized in durango belong to sr mayo

  3. Y’all saw CJNG killed those 6 kids in Lagos de Moreno..

    1. Yeah… grimy mfs smh

    2. 10:34 yep cjng and cds straight garbage kill them all

  4. GET THEM DIRTY DRUG LABS OUT IF MORELOS... These bums are destroying beautiful Mexico

  5. Calabazo got murked. @P@RR@ND3R0

  6. Mario Calabasas found dead?! 👀


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