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Tag: Mexico

Brutal Murder of DEA Agent Enrique Camarena 25 Years Ago a Reminder of the Agency’s Priorities

“Special Agent Enrique “Kiki” Camarena’s vicious kidnapping, torture, and murder 25 years ago remains a burning reminder of the dangers and high stakes involved in drug law enforcement” Michele Leonhart, Acting Administrator for the DEA

DEA's Michele Leonhart/dea photo

DEA's Michele Leonhart/dea photo

By Jerry Seper
Washington Times

WASHINGTON –– Twenty-five years ago today, the brutally beaten body of U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration Agent Enrique S. “Kiki” Camarena was discovered wrapped in plastic bags and dumped along a road near a ranch 60 miles southwest of Guadalajara, Mexico – a death that continues to echo even now throughout the agency.

The veteran agent, along with his pilot, Capt. Alfredo Zavala Avelar, had been viciously tortured by the bosses of a Mexican drug cartel fearful that he had uncovered a multimillion-dollar smuggling operation tied to top officers in the Mexican army, along with Mexican police and government officials.

Over a 30-hour period, Camarena’s skull, jaw, nose, cheekbones and windpipe had been crushed. His ribs were broken; a hole was drilled into his head with a screwdriver. The agent had been injected with drugs to ensure he remained conscious during his torture.

For Full Story

The Ever Elusive Finish Line for the Multi-Billion $$$$ U.S.-Mexico Virtual Fence

Protecting the U.S.- Mexican border has always been a challenge. And this this is only adding to the challenge.

istock photo

istock photo

By Jeffrey Anderson
The Washington Times

WASHINGTON — A multibillion-dollar “virtual fence” along the southwestern border promised for completion in 2009 to protect the U.S. from terrorists, violent drug smugglers and a flood of illegal immigrants is a long way from becoming a reality, with government officials unable to say when, how or whether it will ever be completed.

More than three years after launching a major border security initiative and forking over more than $1 billion to the Boeing Co., the project’s major contractor, Homeland Security Department officials are re-evaluating the high-tech component of the plan in the wake of a series of critical Government Accountability Office (GAO) reports warning lawmakers that the expensive undertaking is deeply flawed.

The program now places the Obama administration in a quandary, foretold by lawmakers who witnessed Boeing and Homeland Security publicly mischaracterize the nature of the contract, according to GAO, after government officials, watchdogs and contractors privately discovered that it was destined to fail.

For Full Story

DEA Hails Capture of Mexican Drug Lord Who Boiled Body Parts in Lye

mexico3By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

WASHINGTON — The DEA is hailing the latest capture of a major Mexican drug lord, who was known to boil the body parts of his rivals in lye.

Mexican authorities on Tuesday captured drug lord Teodor Eduardo Garcia Simental just south of the California border, the New York Times reported.

”This is a big-time arrest,” Rusty Payne, a spokesman for the Drug Enforcement Administration in Washington told the Times. ”We’re seeing a pattern here, a lot of high-profile captures.”

“Mr. Garcia, who went by the name ”El Teo,” did not necessarily look like someone accused of boiling his victims’ remains,” the Times reported. “The mug shot distributed by law enforcement officials showed him in a coat and tie, with chubby cheeks and a wisp of a mustache.”

On Wednesday, the DEA Acting Administrator Michele Leonhart issued a statement on the arrest:

“Today another Mexican cartel leader was taken off the street and is no longer able to carry out his bloody turf war. This arrest is one more demonstration of the growing capacity of the Government of Mexico to bring major drug traffickers to justice.

“This was not an isolated event: it exemplifies the growing effectiveness of our information sharing with the Calderon Administration, and our continued commitment to defeat the drug traffickers who have plagued both our nations.”

The Associated Press reported that American authorities had been helping to track El Teo  for five months. He was suspected of being behind dozens of murders of Mexican police.

To read the full story click here.

Drug War in Mexico Continues to Spin Out of Control: 69 Murders in One Day

mexico-border-signBy Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

WASHINGTON — If there’s any doubt the narco-terror war in Mexico is real and getting crazier– just look to Saturday: 69 people were murdered, including 26 in the border town of Ciudad Juarez, the Associated Press is reporting.

In 2009, Mexico recorded more than 6,500 drug related murders.

The AP reports that the drug murders are “becoming more grotesque.”

“Last week a victim’s face was peeled from his skull and sewn onto a soccer ball,” the AP reported. “On Monday, prosecutors in Culiacan identified the remains of 41-year-old former police officer divided into two separate ice chests.”

To Read More

Mexico Shows it’s Not Backing Down in Deadly War; Arrests Brother of Dead Drug Cartel Boss

mexico-mapBy Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

In a bloody bloody drug war south of the border, the Mexican government is showing signs that it’s not backing down.

The Associated Press is reporting that Mexican authorities have captured Carolos Beltran Leyva, the brother Beltran Leyva, a major drug boss who was gunned down in a military raid last month.

The brother’s arrest comes about two weeks after hit men murdered the family of a military man who was killed during the raid that killed Leyva. The retaliation by drug dealers sent a collective fear throughout Mexico.

To read more click here.

Death of Mexican “Boss of Bosses” Drug Cartel Kingpin Won’t Spell the End

DEA's Michele Leonhart/dea photo

DEA's Michele Leonhart/dea photo

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

WASHINGTON — The death on Wednesday of Mexican drug kingpin Arturo Beltran Leyva, who claimed to be the “boss of bosses”, may be a big victory for the Mexican and American governments, but it certainly won’t spell the end to the violent grip the cartels have on the country.

In fact, it could end up creating a power struggle that may only mean more violence.

“It’s an important step but, at the end of the day, you’re not going to reduce the market,” Alberto Islas, a Mexico City-based security analyst told the Los Angeles Times. “You take out one guy and somebody else will take his place. But this is violent.”

Mexican and American officials hailed the death of the kingpin, who was fatally shot during an intense gunfight with Mexican naval commandos.

“This action represents an important achievement for the people and government of Mexico and a heavy blow against one of the most dangerous criminal organizations in Mexico,” President Felipe Calderon said, according to the Times.

“His death has dealt a crippling blow to one of the most violent cartels in the world,” said Michele Leonhart, acting director of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration.

To Read the full Los Angeles Times Story click here.

OTHER STORIES OF INTEREST

Authorities Find Mexico-U.S. Tunnel with Lighting, Ventilation and Elevator

tijuana mapBy Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Mexican authorities, acting on info from U.S. federal investigators, shut down a yet to be completed underground tunnel on Wednesday that originated in Tijuana, Mexico and extended 860 feet into San Diego.

The tunnel, measuring just under 1000 feet in length and 90 to 100 feet in depth, had lighting, ventilation and an elevator system, the Drug Enforcement Administration said. The tunnel did not yet have an entry point in the U.S.

“The discovery of this unfinished tunnel bears witness to the extraordinary cooperation between all agencies involved in the task force and the Government of Mexico,” Ralph W. Partridge, DEA special agent in charge of the San Diego office  said in a statement. “It is extremely important to the San Diego area and the entire United States that his cooperative effort stopped the completion of this drug smuggling corridor before even an ounce of drugs could be transported through it.”

Authorities said the Mexican government arrested more than a dozen people inside the tunnel, which may have been under construction for about two years.

The Mexican government acted on information provided by the San Diego Tunnel Task Force comprised of multiple agencies.

Mexico and U.S. Align Against Brutal Drug Cartels

The war on drugs in Mexico is more than just a war on the flow of cocaine and other drugs. It’s about stability in the Mexican government, law and order, mass murder, fear and the corruption of American law enforcement agents. When so much money is involved, it takes a lot to bring things under control. This  isn’t about people smoking pot to treat their glaucoma. It  really is a war and the U.S. needs to treat it like one.

mexico-border-signBy William Booth and Steve Fainaru
The Washington Post

MEXICO CITY — To avenge the arrest of their leader, Mexican drug cartel commandos went on a rampage this summer across the lawless state of Michoacan, seizing 12 Mexican police officers and dumping their bound and stripped corpses in a pile beside a busy highway.

The slaughtered federal agents, it later emerged, had something in common: All had been vetted and trained by the U.S. government to work alongside its anti-narcotics agents.

Officials said the American connection made them high-value targets for the cartels, which are lashing back ruthlessly against a military crackdown involving unprecedented cooperation between the two countries.

After decades of mistrust and sometimes betrayal, Mexican and U.S. authorities are increasingly setting aside their differences to unite against a common enemy.

For Full Story