Tag Archives: Juárez cartel

Narco car bomb kills 4 in Juárez

An apparent car bomb on a main street in downtown Juárez yesterday evening destroyed a Federal Police truck on patrol, killing four persons, and wounding another eight. Only one of the victims has been identified, Dr. Guillermo Ortiz, who was on the scene providing medical assistance when the bomb went off.

While Attorney General Arturo Chávez, speaking in a press conference in Mexico City, ruled out ‘narco-terrorism’ and said the cause of the explosion was still under investigation, the commander of the Fifth Military Zone, General Eduardo Zarate said that investigators had recovered C-4 explosive and a cellphone-activated detonator in the Ford Focus (or Taurus) that blew up.  The Ministry of Public Security said that the killings were a reprisal for the capture of the Jesús Armando Acosta Guerrero, aka “El 35”, who was a leader of “La Linea”, the armed wing of the Juárez cartel.

Juárez mayor José Reyes Ferriz described an elaborate ambush during a press conference: Unknown suspects drove up and dumped a body dressed in a police uniform, shot him, and drove off; the emergency services received a call about the shooting; rescue personnel and police arrived to investigate and provide assistance to an apparent officer down (who appeared to still be alive); as the police and medical personnel were working the car bomb exploded.

(Universal 7/16, Excelsior 7/16)

The moment of the explosion and the aftermath were captured by a local TV station:

Federal Police capture killer of U.S. consular workers

The Federal Police captured Jesús Ernesto Chávez Castillo, alias “El Camello,” and six others for the March 13 murder of a U.S. consular worker and two others.  Lesley Ann Enríquez, her husband Arthur H. Redelfs, and Jorge Alberto Salcido, the spouse of another consulate employee were shot as they drove away from a party held by families that worked at the consulate in Juárez. El Camello, 41,  is said to be the leader of “Los Aztecas”, a group linked to the armed wing of the Juárez cartel known as “La Línea.”

The chief of the anti-drug division,  Ramón Pequeño, said, “Intelligence reports indicate that Jesús Ernesto Chávez Castillo alias ‘El Camello’ was the person who ordered the killing of the U.S. consular personnel on March 13 in Ciudad Juárez, handled the logistics, and provided weapons to the killers. Chávez Castillo confessed that the order to attack the official of the U.S. consulate came from members of ‘La Línea’ located in the United States, since [Lesley Ann Enríquez] facilitated visas for members of a rival group known as “Los Artistas Asesinos” or “AA”.  He related that on the day of the attack, they determined that she was traveling in a white truck; however, that day there were two vehicles of the same color.  Since they were uncertain of which one she was traveling in, they opened fire against both,” Pequeño continued.

According to Pequeño, El Camello also confessed to being involved in the killings of the 13 teenagers in Villas de Salvarcar in Ciudad Juárez last January.  Los Aztecas staged the attack because they thought there were members of Los Artistas Asesinos at the party. The killings of 19 persons (most of them members of Los Aztecas) at the Fe y Vida drug rehab center in Juárez last month was reportedly staged by AA in retaliation.

The SSP said that El Camello reported to Antonio Acosta Hernández, aka “El Dientón”, #2 in La Línea, who was under the command of Juan Pablo Ledezma, aka “El JL”, #2 in the Juárez Cartel, under  Vicente Carrillo Fuentes. El Camello spent 5 years in a Louisiana penitentiary for dealing drugs. He had previously been arrested by the Army in April, 2008, but was released. El Camello stated that most   members of Los Aztecas were recruited in U.S. prisons by inmates belonging to “La Línea,” and became active gang members after being deported to Mexico. (Reforma 7/2, Excelsior 7/2, Ministry of Public Safety 7/2)

Key agricultural program aids drug traffickers

The primary government program for supporting poor farmers, Procampo, was shown to be paying support funds to many of the top drug traffickers and their families, as well many prominent political families, according to an investigation carried out by CIDE and Fundar and reported by El Universal. Among the drug traffickers (and their families) who have gotten Procampo financial support: ‘El Mayo’ Zambada (Sinaloa cartel), ‘El Chapo’ Guzmán (Sinaloa cartel), Amado and Vicente Carrillo Fuentes (Juárez cartel), and Juan Garcia Abrego (Gulf Cartel).  Procampo was created 15 years ago to assist small farmers adjust to the opening of agricultural trade as part of NAFTA.  The investigation estimates that the top 20% of recipients have gotten 80% of the Ps. 171 billion in grants over the life of the program, while the average small farmer receives only Ps.700 per year.  In response, Secretary of Agriculture Alberto Cárdenas promised an immediate scrubbing of the list of beneficiaries, but said it was the responsibility of the Justice Ministry to weed out drug traffickers. (Universal 7/27, 7/29, Proceso 7/31)

Juárez cartel creates own paramilitary squads

According to the organized crime directorate SIEDO, the Juárez cartel led by Vicente Carrillo Fuentes has created its own paramilitary hit squads, recruited from among members of the Army’s elite units.  The ‘Lynxes’ are thought to number at least 80 men, operating in 4 or 5 man cells, and are the cartel’s answer to Los Zetas, the paramilitary wing of the Gulf cartel. The Lynxes are thought to be behind the attempt against Chihuahua governor José Reyes Baeza last February. (Universal 7/20)