Monday, May 19, 2008

Mega Cartel created in Mexico; Los Zetas becomes a new Cartel

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Foreign News Report

The National Association of Former Border Patrol Officers (NAFBPO) extracts and condenses the material that follows from Mexican and Central and South American on-line media sources on a daily basis. You are free to disseminate this information, but we request that you credit NAFBPO as being the provider.

El Universal (Mexico City) 5/19/08

Megacartel created

(1) After a meeting that took place Sunday, Los Zetas became a new cartel in Mexico, independent of their previous leaders and with a newly formed alliance of former organizations, will establish a new map for controlling of Mexican territories. The new "megacartel" will reportedly be headed by Heriberto Lazcano and Miguel Treviño Morales. The alliance was formed between Arturo Beltrán Leyva (El Barbas) and his brothers, Alfredo and Alberto and the Gulf Cartel with its army of military-trained executioners, Los Zetas. The new organization will be re-dividing sections of Mexican territories as well as fighting a territorial war with La Federación, a group of narco-organizations headed by Joaquín (El Chapo) Guzmán and Ismaél (El Mayo) Zambada, once allied with the Beltrans. These turf battles between various factions of the Gulf, Sinaloa, Juárez and Tijuana cartels and their affiliates, as well as the federal operations against them, have brought about a lessening of rivalries and a possibility of conciliation. Indications are that Alfredo Beltrán has suggested a peace and possibly further alliances with the warring cartels. Such consolidation would represent a distinct problem of national security for both Mexico and the U.S., it was noted. (The attached photo-map relates)

(2) Two top police officials of the state of Durango were abducted yesterday and their whereabouts are unknown. Their official vehicle was discovered on the outskirts of Ignacio Allende with three bullet holes in it.

(3) Five victims of execution-style murders were found Sunday in two separate locations near Rosarito Beach, a favorite tourist area in Baja California south of Tijuana. Four of the victims appeared to be non-Mexican, but their nationalities have not yet been confirmed. The first of the murders was discovered Sunday afternoon when a body was found in an abandoned car. Later that evening, the bodies of four people, three "afro-americanos" and a "white woman" were found in an SUV underneath a bridge on the highway leading to Tijuana. All had been shot in the head. A short distance away, two other bodies were found. Both appeared "foreign." Their manner of death was not reported, but apparently not "execution-style." (This article was accompanied by a reader's comment, which was decidedly racist.)

(4) Night of terror: The usually quiet town of Villa Ahumada, Chihuahua endured a siege of terror from 11 p.m. Saturday to 3:30 a.m. Sunday when an army of 40 armed narco-killers took over the town of 30,000 inhabitants. Frantic calls to the police went unanswered, they later realized, because two of them had been murdered and the rest held captive inside the police station. The thugs had gained entry and taken them prisoners on the threat of murdering innocent people. During the spree, the narcos shot up the town, robbed citizens and took every advantage of their uncontested control. In the wake of the ordeal, 200 military were airlifted to the town where they shot one of the gang's leaders and captured 10 others. The local police had been receiving threats and the local force had dwindled from 15 at the beginning of the year to 3 officers. At the time of this incident, the force consisted of state police replacements.


El Porvenir (Monterrey, Nuevo León) 5/19/08

Red Sunday: 21 executions. This past Sunday, 21 assassinations, presumably by organized crime, were reported in six different states. In Chihuahua 13 occurred; Aguascalientes, 3; Guerrero, 2; Sinaloa, 1; Michoacán, 1; and in Tijuana, Baja California, 1.


Frontera (Tijuana, Baja California) 5/19/08

The Mérida Initiative has gained the attention of the Mexican press as they note the conditions imposed by the U.S. for assisting in the fight against narcotraffic, in effect: legal and judicial reform and a police and military force free of corruption and human rights violations. (The op/column, "Thank you, Gringos," our report of 5/17/08 relates.)


Milenio (Mexico City) 5/19/08

According to the chairman of a major committee of the Mexican House of Representatives, Diodoro Carrasco Altamirano (PAN), the Army is irreplaceable in combating organized crime as long as the Federal Police agency is no better organized and police agencies are not coordinated or have the capacity of response. He was speaking to the House in favor of strengthening public policies of the departments for recruiting, selection and incentives of their personnel. He called for better training, salaries, equipment and benefits.


-end of report-

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