A leading source for news and analysis about Mexico and the U.S.-Mexican border.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

General says capture of major figures linked to Arellano cartel this week shows the cartel still has life

Gen. Gilberto Landeros told the media Friday that this week's capture in Tijuana of two major figures linked to the Arellano Félix cartel show that the cartel still has life. Luis Manuel "El Mono" Toscano Rodríguez was arrested Thursday and Julio César "El M-4" Salas Reyes was arrested Monday. The Sinaloa Cartel now is seen as holding general sway in Tijuana.
Story, Frontera (PDF).
Update, July 14: Probable cause found to hold "El Mono." Story, Frontera (PDF).

Friday, July 6, 2012

500 kilos of pot, 200 packages of cocaine found in Rosarito

Authorities found 500 pounds of marijuana Thursday on a boat left on a beach at the Popotla community of Playas de Rosarito. Later, 200 packages of cocaine were found in a recreational vehicle at the nearby Mar del Coral campground. Five people were detained. Story, Frontera (PDF).

Alleged drug operator for Arellano cartel in Tijuana's Zona Norte arrested

Luis Manuel "El Mono" Toscano Rodríguez, 34, the alleged chief drug operator for the Arellano cartel in Tijuana's Zona Norte, was arrested, El Mexicano reported on its front page. Authorities said his vehicle contained 21 grams of cocaine and various weapons. After Toscano and his 8-year-old son were shot and wounded in the Altamira neighborhood in January 2011, the territory was reportedly taken over by Alberto "El Chacal" Ávila Alvarado, 21, who was arrested the next month. Toscano had been arrested in 2009 when Julián Leyzaola was police chief, but then regained his freedom some months later, El Mexicano reported.
Story, El Mexicano (PDF). Jump.

Would-be border crosser kidnapped, then freed in Tijuana after wife wires $4,500; car wash worker who provided link to kidnappers seized

A would-be border crosser was kidnapped and only freed in Tijuana after his wife wired the kidnappers $4,500, Frontera newspaper reported. The kidnapping apparently occurred after the would-be border crosser met a car wash worker who said he would connect him with people to help him cross. The man was freed after the $4,500 was paid, and then went to police, who detained the car wash worker, Frontera said. Story, Frontera (PDF).
Update, July 10: More arrests made in July 3 case. All those arrested were identified as: Eduardo Leyva Villalba, 42, the car wash worker also known as "El Lalo" o "El Colas"; Yadira Elizabeth Cruz Mejía, 33; Paulino "El Polo" Ramos Tejeda, 39; and a minor, Christian "N", 17, also known as "El Cristo Rey." The amount wired now is reported to have been $4,000.
The story said the would-be border crosser had been deported from the U.S. and was trying to get back to rejoin his wife, who also was present at the car wash.
Front page story, El Mexicano (PDF). Jump. Frontera's story (PDF).

Two police killed in Durango; 340 people killed in state this year

Two police trying to stop an armed group in several vehicles in Tepehuanes, Durango, were killed in a shootout early Thursday, authorities said.
In Lerdo, Durango, the dismembered bodies of a man and a woman were found.
The media reported there have been 340 violent deaths in the state this year.
Two alleged kidnappers were detained by the military in Lerdo; they may be linked to two graves found last week that had six bodies. The suspects were identified as Celín
Felipe Balderas Carrillo, 22, and a 17-year-old minor identified only as Miguel. Both were from Torreón. A person who had been kidnapped June 24 in Torreón was freed when the pair was captured.

Thurday, July 5, 2012

Arrest of 'El M-4' confirmed

The Mexican military confirmed Monday's arrest of Julio César Salas Reyes, also known as "El M-4," in Tiuana. Salas was injured during his capture and was later treated at the Red Cross hospital. Salas is believed to have been a member of the Arellano Félix cartel since the 1990s. He is believed to have been an assassin for Efraín Pérez Arciniega, captured in 2004 and extradited to the United States in 2009. Salas is believed to have also worked closely with Javier "El Tigrillo" Arellano Félix, captured off Baja California Sur in 2006, and with Juan Francisco "El Sillas" Sillas Rocha, captured in 2011. Salas, who had weapons and communications equipment in his possession, was flown to Mexico City. Story, Frontera (PDF).

5 bodies found in Guerrero with message, 'This is what happens to the Knights Templar"

Five bodies were found along a highway in the Costa Grande area of Guerrero state with a message that said "This is what happens to the Knights Templar." The Knights are a spinoff of La Familia Michoana. Story in Frontera (PDF).

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