- Almost 92 thousand lbs of weed seized in Tijuana
- Sonoyta Sonora: Border Violence Erupts as “Los Memos” and “Los Salazar" clash for control
- Those who follow after the fall of "El Grande", is this the end of Fuerzas Especiales de Damaso?
Posted: 14 Jun 2015 02:33 AM PDT
Members of the Mexican Army and Agents of the State Preventive Police seized 41.6 metric tons of Marijuana (almost 92 thousand lbs) in the city of Tijuana.
On June 10, after an anonymous tip was given to authorities, a couple by the name of Francisco Pineda Villanueva and Blanca Estela Robles Garcia were arrested by members of the Mexican Army and State Preventive Police when they were driving a Honda CR-V loaded with 54 kilos of Marijuana.
After being questioned, the couple admitted they "worked" as guards in a warehouse were much more drugs were to be found.
After their confession, a search warrant was requested to the Attorney General´s Office and members of the Army drove in more than 40 vehicles to a warehouse located in Laderas street belonging to the Granjas Familiares area to make sure no one took away the drugs.
On June 12, two days after the couple´s arrest, the search warrant was given and the soldiers opened the doors to the ranch. Inside the ranch, located inside an underground room, the soldiers found 5271 packages with a total weight of 41.6 metric tons of Marijuana, the largest seizure of drugs in Baja California this year(a record seizure of 134 metric tons back in 2010 is still the largest in Baja´s history).
According to General Gabriel Garcia Rincon, Commander of the 2nd Military Zone, the drugs was in prime state and was packaged with over 15 different signs and logos(including the cartoon character Road Runner) which could give a sign of where they came from and/or where they were headed to.
The couple in charge of the warehouse was transferred to Federal custody and their 3 children who lived with them in the same warehouse were taken to the local DIF(Children care)
The anonymous tip helped in finding this warehouse even thou, at least according to authorities, they knew there was a drug warehouse in the area, they just didn´t know exactly where.
Erick Lara Cabrera, Deputy Director of Intelligence for PEP claimed it took them several weeks of work to be able to find this place.
Unofficial information points to Ismael "El Mayo" Zambada as the owner of the drugs.
Posted: 13 Jun 2015 09:22 PM PDT
Lucio R. Borderland Beat Republished from Arizona Daily Star By Perla Trevizo
SONOYTA, Sonora — Anabel Cortez is afraid to leave her children home alone anymore.
After deadly gun battles between rival organized crime groups started on April 30, Cortez took her children and fled her rural community outside this border town.
She is back home now that the violence has subsided, but not by choice.
“Where else am I going to go?” asks the mom of three elementary- and middle-school students.
Sonoyta and the rural communities to the east, all part of the municipality of Plutarco Elias Calles, have been the battleground for rival cartel factions vying to control valuable territory for moving people and drugs into the United States.
Sonoyta borders Lukeville, a crossing frequently used by Arizona travelers on their way to the beach town of Puerto Peñasco, commonly known as Rocky Point.
Cortez, 34, was among hundreds of people who fled Desierto de Sonora, less than 10 miles east of Sonoyta, after violence erupted last month. By some accounts, 28 gunmen and two innocent civilians were killed in the Sonoyta area from April 30 to May 5. The Sonora investigative state police reported six people killed on May 1 and another five on May 4. Residents said the criminals themselves started to warn people of upcoming shootouts and asked them to leave.
The fighting nearly paralyzed the town. Many parents stopped sending their kids to school. The city canceled all cultural and sports activities, including the traditional Fiesta de las Flores, an annual fair that is one of Sonoyta’s main events.
“We didn’t want to put citizens in danger in case of a violent incident, that we would be caught in the crossfire,” said Carlos Arvizu, Sonoyta’s city manager. “It was a preventive measure.”
The mayor, Julio Cesar Ramírez Vásquez, is no longer giving interviews, his office said, after one of the groups threatened him for speaking out.
So far this year, the Sonora state police has reported 38 homicides just in the Sonoyta area — with a population of about 18,000 — and another five wounded. May was the deadliest month, with 15 dead and another one injured, Sonora police data analyzed by the Arizona Daily Star show.
And those are just the officially reported numbers. By other accounts, it was 22 dead — including six burned bodies — and at least a handful of others injured that month. There also have been gun battles between the Sonora state police and gunmen that have resulted in at least another 14 dead.
Local residents talk of many others who are missing and unaccounted for.
Another 14 people have died in neighboring Caborca, plus 11 injured — including four state police officers.
Most recently, more than a dozen Central American immigrants were rescued near a ranch on the town’s outskirts, close to the U.S. border. State police reported three dead, including two men found inside torched vehicles and a woman with gunshot wounds.
“From what we can tell, migrants were using one of the drug routes,” said Erica Curry, a Phoenix spokeswoman with the Drug Enforcement Administration. “We believe they were attacked because drug traffickers don’t want that kind of attention.”
Then, on June 8, a former municipal police officer and lawyer was murdered by gunmen outside the Circle K in Sonoyta.
Battling for Control
The recent violence across the border is due to fighting between cells of the Sinaloa cartel known as “Los Memos” and “Los Salazar.”
Violence in the Sonoyta area began to spike in January over Los Memos’ attempt to take control over the Sonoyta plaza and all drug smuggling routes. It’s the most intense fighting since early 2009, when 12 dismembered bodies were found in an abandoned vehicle along the Caborca-Sonoyta highway, with a narco message saying the Sinaloa Cartel was taking over the plaza.
The latest round started in March, Curry said. The Sonora state police reported 10 deaths in the Sonoyta area that month, including a soldier who was patrolling a rural area when he and his partner — who survived — came under attack.
The Sinaloa cartel has decentralized over the past few years, leading to sporadic, violent power struggles between plaza bosses in northern Sonora, also, several top leaders of the cartel were arrested, creating a power vacuum.
On Sept. 6, 2012, Mexican police arrested Adelmo Niebla González, the suspected leader of Los Memos and presumed to be in charge of bringing weapons into Mexico and transporting marijuana, meth and cocaine from Sonora to Maricopa County. El Memos came to power with help from Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzmán, the head of the Sinaloa cartel who was arrested in February 2014. He and his two bodyguards escaped a Sinaloa prison in 2014 through a tunnel that was dug into the prison from the outside.
A few months after that arrest, in November 2012, Mexican soldiers arrested Jesús Alfredo Salazar Ramírez, the leader of Los Salazar, in the state of Mexico. Salazar, who came to power after his father was arrested in 2011, was said to be responsible for cultivating, transporting and smuggling marijuana through Sonora and a western sliver of Chihuahua into the United States. He was also an important lieutenant of El Chapo Guzmán.
In 2013, Puerto Peñasco was the scene of an hours-long battle between drug cartel gunmen and the Mexican federal police, who allegedly killed Gonzalo Inzunza, also known as El Macho Prieto and a top lieutenant of the Sinaloa cartel. The body was never recovered.
“Macho Prieto was involved in one of the first signs of Sinaloa infighting we are still seeing going on,” analyst Tristan Reed reports.
Sonora has always been a key place for traffickers. To the south and east, in neighboring Sinaloa and Chihuaha — and somewhat within Sonora, too — is significant drug production including opium poppies, marijuana and meth. To the north, the border is more porous than in other places and far more desolate.
Across the border from Sonoyta is Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument, 330,000 acres of public land, and further east is the Tohono O’Odham Nation, a reservation about the size of Connecticut.
“There’s nothing but desert for miles and miles,” said the DEA’s Curry. “It’s, unfortunately, one of our biggest vulnerabilities for drug trafficking.”
On the Mexican side, it’s all agriculture, cattle ranching and sparsely populated rural communities.
The Drug Route
Most drug shipments are believed to arrive in Puerto Peñasco. From there they go east to Agua Prieta, Sonoyta, San Luis Río Colorado, Nogales or are shipped by foot north through the desert, where there is less law enforcement.
The western corridor of the Border Patrol’s Tucson sector has been the busiest for years. More than 60 percent of the marijuana seized in the sector is in this area.
Mexican federal authorities have destroyed and seized thousands of pounds of marijuana and had several major seizures of meth, primarily found inside tractor trailers headed to Tijuana and Mexicali.
For a drug trafficker, it’s almost impossible to avoid Sonora, whether it is to cross drugs directly into the United States or to transport them further west to Baja California.
“Drugs and people are transported from Mexico to the United States while weapons and money come from the United States to Mexico,” said Sonora State Attorney Carlos Navarro Sugich, who oversees the state’s investigative police.
The complexities of the area make it essentially a paradise for the cartels, Sugich said. But the violence in Sonoyta is not representative of what’s happening in the rest of the state.
Sonoyta has seen nearly twice as many homicides since last year — 38 so far in 2015 versus 16 for the same period in 2014, he said. The state’s overall number of homicides feel during the same period, from 275 to 200.
The three levels of government are working together to bring peace back to the region. Sonoyta only has about 20 police officers, but with all levels of government included, more than 100 law enforcement personnel patrol the area.
“I don’t care if the criminal groups get along or not,” Navarro said, “no one has a reason to be killing each other.”
At the scene, officials have found AK-47s and AR-15 rifles, shotguns and ammunition. Some of the dead were found wearing camouflage clothing and tactical vests. Those identified have been from Sonora and from neighboring states including Sinaloa and Chihuahua.
Life Goes On
One day in May, a fight broke out, and Cortez, the mother of three, told her kids to get on the floor. They grabbed at her legs and pleaded with her to lie down with them, but she kept watch.
“Don’t get up,” she demanded as she peeked through the bedroom window. “I have to make sure they’re not coming this way.”
As soon as the fighting was over, she grabbed a change of clothes for each child and fled to her sister’s home in Sonoyta.
She was there for almost two weeks. She didn’t want to overstay her welcome, she said, but she doesn’t want to live in Desierto de Sonora anymore.
If she has to leave the house and can’t take the children with her, she tells them to lock themselves in and not open the door to anyone.
Her son Joel, 13, said only a handful of children have gone back to school. Many fled to other cities, even other states.
Joel likes his home, he said, but only when bad things don’t happen. He knows sicarios, people who kill each other, are in the area.
“There was a killing over there, and over there,” he says pointing to different locations.
His mother is still afraid.
“Every little sound wakes me up at night,” she said.
Juan Ortega, 65, was at home when shooting broke out on his street.
He and his wife, María Hernández, ran inside and hid under their bed, he said.
The bullets sounded like hail hitting the tin roof.
The couple worked in the nearby cotton and asparagus fields until they could no longer do so because of their age. Now they run a small snack stand outside their home, where neighborhood children go for their daily treat of potato chips, juices and Mexican candy.
The day of the shootout, they packed a suitcase, grabbed their pit bull, Rocky, and headed to Sonoyta, where they stayed a few days with a relative.
“We were last ones to leave and first ones to come back.” Ortega said.
Desierto de Sonora has been their home for 42 years.
“We didn’t want to leave our little house,” he said. “This is all we have.”
When Violence Comes Home
Desierto de Sonora is an ejido, communal land owned by the people. Many came decades ago from other states to work in the fields and never left. They had children and their children had children. With about 200 hundred houses, it is home to 1,200 people.
This is a place where people look out for each other. It’s a place where kids can roam free.
“If someone gets sick, everyone pitches in to help,” said Dionisia Gutierrez, who has lived here for 22 years.
But even though the gun battles have stopped and even as people return home, violence so close to home has taken a major toll on residents’ financial and emotional well-being.
“For Sale” signs and boarded up homes dot the landscape.
Antonio Huitrón had been coming from Puerto Peñasco to sell his seafood and seasonal fruit for 15 years. He stopped his weekly trips through town while the violence was at its peak. Now he drives through twice a week, using a portable loud speaker affixed to the top of his truck to advertise his offerings: fish filets, watermelon and sweet oranges for sale. There are still some areas further east where he won’t go.
After the violence last month, Dionisia Gutierrez, 32, gave several interviews to Mexican television outlets. She showed reporters the broken windows and the more than 20 bullet holes in her pantry and in her children’s room. She wondered aloud what would have happened if they had been at home.
When interviewed last week, though, she said everything was fine and she never wanted to leave in the first place. She did it for her kids, ages 8 to 16.
Another resident was with her husband at their snack stand when the shooting started and had to hide in a small metal closet in their backyard, a neighbor said. But when asked by the Star, the woman said she hadn’t been there. She didn’t see anything.
Her first name? She hesitated. Rosa.
“Can we leave it like that?” she asked. “I don’t want trouble.”
Posted: 13 Jun 2015 12:52 PM PDT
Translated by Otis B Fly-Wheel for Borderland Beat from a Zetatijuana article
[ Subject Matter: CDS, Baja California Sur
Recommendation: Read my articles on La China and El Cochi]
After the capture of Abel Nahum Qunitero Manjarrez or Cruz Alonso Lozoya Uriate, intelligence operatives search for Melissa Margarita Calderon Ojeda "La China" or "La Mely" and Raul Castillo de la Rosa "El Cochi", of the Fuerza Especiales de Damaso.
Reporter: Zeta Investigations and Cortesia
After the detention of the head of Sicarios Abel Nahum Quintero Manjarrez or Cruz Alonso Lozoya Uriate "El Grande" or "El Chucky", which occurred on the afternoon of Thursday 28th of May in the Villas del Encanto Colonia in La Paz, the State security forces, Federal and Military, started an intelligence operation to locate and capture the heads of the "Fuerzas Especiales de Damaso".
The principal objective, according to a member of the Group for Coordination of State Public Security, " is to capture, dead or alive, the heads of Sicarios responsible for the wave of kidnappings, disappearances, torturing, executions, decapitations, and gun battles in the South Californian Capital.
According to experts of SEIDO, these heads have been identified by name, nickname, physical characteristics, and addresses:
1. Melissa Margarita Calderon Ojeda "La China" or "La Mely".
2. Raul Castillo de la Rosa "El Cochi".
Expert officials indicate that the last participation that these heads of Sicarios had physically in armed attacks and homicides were during the last few violent weeks, particularly from 5th of April to the 20th of May, before the capture of "El Grande", as follows:
*According to testimony, on the 5th of April, "La China" was seen at the execution of Audencio Yobany Lopez Beltran "El H" or "El Hector", perpetrated on the Malecon coast of La Paz.
*Witnesses said that on the 20th of May, Raul Castillo de la Rosa was seen in an armed attack against a Mechanic named "Sixto" in the Los Olivos Colonia in La Paz.
According to to experts in command of SEIDO, these Sicario Bosses are related in a direct manner in no less that 20 homicides, they want to have charge of between four and six Sicarios, arms, vehicles and safe houses, that until now have been hard to capture, because of their criminal network links to Police and the Commanders of the Municipal Police of La Paz.
On the 2nd of June, Melissa Margarita Calderon Ojeda "La China" was on the point of being captured in an operation of the Centre for Strategic Operations of the PGR and the PGJE with the backing of the armed forces.
The Agents located a suspect vehicle a Volkswagen Beetle colored white, with reflective windows, circulation plates CZM-3273, with four people on board, a woman and three men, circulating about Calle Mango in the direction of Indeco Colonia.
The officers immediately turned to follow the suspect vehicle, the woman who was driving sped off trying to flee from the officers, they even made an attempt to get into a house, but did not manage it and the route was closed off by State and Federal Agents.
The officers pointed their guns at the crew and asked to get out of the car, the driver dismounted first, then the passenger, and in the end, the two companions who were in the rear.
According to the officers that participated in the operation, the subject were identified with credentials of the following names:
*Fernanda Judith Bravo Castro, 23 years of age and originally from La Paz, BCS.
* Hector Gregorio Garcia Garcia, 33 years of age, originally from Mazatlan, Sinaloa.
* Erick Uriel Zacarias Lopez, 34 years of age, and a native of Culiacan, Sinaloa.
*Jesus Antonio Quinonez Garcia, 20 years of age, born in Mazatlan, Sinaloa.
The driver of the vehicle got out carrying a black plastic bag, which she was seen removing from a glove compartment in the car, and after a search, the interior of the bag half a Glock 17 pistol in 9mm calibre, serial number YE954, together with a magazine in which were 19 rounds of ammo, along with two spare magazines both loaded each with 17 rounds.
During a search of the vehicle itself, the investigating Agents found in between the two rear passenger seats in the rear a green fragmentation grenade, with a number of dents on the RFX stamp. After proceeding with the search, they found under the driver and front passenger seats the following arms:
two AK 47 assault rifles, 7.62 x 39 calibre with a magazine with 30 rounds, manufactured by Norinco, model Sporter, one manufactured by Romar/Cugir, model WASR-10/63 ( Otis: this is a Romanian Copy of the Russian AKM, supplied with only a ten shot single stack magazine, this one in the article had a 30 round magazine, which means it has been modified by Century Arms International at some point).
On the other side, under the front passenger seat they found six magazines for the AK47's each loaded with 30 rounds. Also two plastic bags with 2300 doses of crystal meth, which amounted to a weight of 115 grammes that's 4.1 ounces for those from the USA.
Once the detained had been identified, the four persons were recognised as part of the criminal cell of "La China" or "La Mely", and that they had been transporting the drugs and guns to a safe house.
Even though officially they said nothing, an anonymous call alerted them to the presence of "La China" in the same vehicle on the morning of the 2nd of June, but when it was finally located and found, it was being driven by another woman who was identified as her "friend".
During the interrogations, one of the detained said that La China had walked to Salto de Mata and a safe house to hide and avoid capture, because she has information that the armed forces are hot on her heels after the arrest of "El Grande", including that she wanted to flee to the United States, that's why they were hiding the drugs and weapons in a safe house they had just rented.
The detainees, who were recognized to be Sicarios under the command of La China, they accepted that they had participated in the following executions:
Manuel Salvador Cota Olachea and Jesus Pablo Pena Lara, assassinated on the 29th of April in the Calles Michoacán and Josefa Ortiz de Dominguez, Colonia Pueblo Nuevo of La Paz.
They affirmed that these persons " were killed under orders of "Los 28", because they no longer wanted to work with them as they were suffering many betrayals all of which were considered to be by his people", their crime being "suspected rats", they had to be silenced. "They knew too many things that could harm them, "now that their identities were known". ( Otis: here endeth the lesson for wannabe cartel supporters, if the enemy don't kill you, and the Police or the Army don't kill you, your own people will kill you, for knowing too much).
According to a dictamen of the PGJE, the ballistics study of the weapons found, tested positive in the executions of Cota Olachea and of Alvarado.
The fall of El Grande
At the moment of being captured, Abel Nahum Quintero Manjarrez or Cruz Alonso Lozoya Uriate "El Grande", was hiding in the store of the business called Sea Food El Vado in the Villas del Encanto Fraccionamiento.
The head of Sicarios was the only one who had run towards the restaurant at the time of the confusion, after an outbreak of gunfire between Police and Sicarios, he tried to hide and go unnoticed, as one of the workers in the restaurant.
In fact he removed an apron from one of the restaurants waiters and put it on, as if he were an employee. He subsequently requested that about 20 people, who were eating sea food at this point, leave the place, then he could take advantage of the confusion, he had hidden his assault rifle with under slung grenade launcher in the store between two boxes, and pretended to be an employee.
The Police arrived inside the restaurant and started identifying all those present dressed as employees, and when they came to him, he said he was an employee of the sea food restaurant, but one of the Agents didn't believe him as he could see a pool of blood on the floor, and when they questioned him, he launched into a series of contradictions until he was finally put under arrest.
Like that, he left the combat area, leaving his Sicarios, "El Grande" was captured by State, Federal and Military Forces, and was immediately transferred to General Hospital "Juan Maria de Salvatierra", in La Paz.
According to the medical report, the killer only had one wound from a .223 calibre bullet that entered his chest and exited out his back, but did not hit any vital organs.
El Grande was driving a white Suburban, when he unleashed the fire-fight. The State Preventative Police located the head of Sicarios driving in the car park of De Plaza Liverpool around 5:30 pm on Thursday the 28th of May.
According to the report, armed persons travelling on board a van with circulation plates CZN2016 of the State of Baja California Sur, Police patrol SSP0775 saw the vehicle leaving the parking lot of the mall, to take the Avenida Pino Payas, at high speed, they accelerated trying to lose their pursuers, one of the Sicarios in the Surburban opened the window and pointed a rifle at them to deter them.
The three officers that were travelling in the patrol car immediately called for back up and advised that the vehicle in which the suspects were travelling in was headed down the Avenida Pino Playas in the direction of the Chedraui supermarket.
The first support to arrive was patrol vehicle SSP4458 which was patrolling in the Villas del Encanto Colonia, who shut off the four lanes of the Avenida Pino Payas and Francisco J Mujica, almost on the block of Sea Food El Vado restaurant.
The Commander and two officers got out of the patrol car and took positions, cocked their weapons and waited for the arrival of the Suburban and the other reinforcements.
About ten vehicles passed the stop, when the Surburban appeared, it had reduced speed until it stopped about 35 to 40 metres from the road block.
In front of the Suburban was patrol SSP4458 and behind them was patrol SSP0775 still pursuing the suspects.
One of the Agents of the Patrol who made the road block shouted " State Preventative Police: Leave the vehicle with your hands in the air, then lay on the ground, we are going to search you".
The four occupants didn't leave the vehicle, so the officer repeated the order. At this point the Sicarios got out of the Suburban, two to the left of the vehicle and two to the right and shouted " We are from Los Damaso, get the fuck out of the way, we are going to pass you fucking bitches, if you don't want to die, get the fuck out of the way".
After the shouting finished, the six Agents that were arriving on the other side of the Suburban, cocked their weapons, then El Grande opened fire to his front at the patrol car blocking their way, the officers took cover behind the wheels of their patrol car,
he then turned and aimed at the patrol car behind and fired a grenade from his under slung grenade launcher, which detonated sending shrapnel into the face and left arm of one of the officers.
The Agents repelled the aggression and shot El Grande who fell injured, then left running and firing on a diagonal track.
The head of Sicarios ran into the Sea Food Restaurant El Vado and his three accomplices made it to some scrub land adjacent the Restaurant. One of them got tangled up running a dropped a grenade about 20 metres from the road, he ran back to recover it and received a hail of gun fire which changed his mind and he ran back to the scrub.
In the immediate surroundings , the Agents were giving support to their injured colleague and sent a call out for an Ambulance, but it was very late arriving, so his colleagues took him in patrol car SSP3763 to a Military Hospital.
Meanwhile units of the Municipal Police of La Paz, Ministerial Police, State Preventative Police, Gendarmerie, Mexican Army and Marines had arrived. After being briefed on the situation, the elements of the Armed Forces entered the scrub land, and fire fight started that lasted approximately 45 minutes, in which the Sicarios Gabriel Antonio Leal Gutierrez, 22 years old and originally from Culiacan, Sinaloa; also Luis Enrique Amezquita Escudero "El Kike", 23 years old also from Culiacan.
The third gunman, who answers to the name of Luis Diego Garcia Villareal "El Luigi", 18 years of age and originally from Culiacan, Sinaloa, stood up out of the scrub with his hands in the air as he had run out of ammunition for his AK47, which he had hidden behind an Oxxo store.
After the confrontation, the PGJE spokesman Adonai Carreon Estrada, announced the decommissioning of the following weapons:
* 2 x AK47 assault rifles
* 2 Assault rifles with grenade launcher attachments
* 4 pistols of 9mm and .40 calibres
* 12 magazines for the rifles
* 2 tactical vests with the legend El Grande
* 2 radios with the frequency of the Municipal Police of La Paz, and the State Preventative Police
* Uniforms and camouflage tactical balaclavas
Inside the vehicle, and at the scene of the crime, dogs of the PGJE found seven fragmentation grenades and 120K pesos.
The two surviving Sicarios of the battle El Grande and El Luigi, were sent to the Arraignment Centre of SEIDO, where they would speak of the bosses, but also of their criminal networks with the Police.
According to the Prosecutor, the head of Sicarios is related to two femicides in Sinaloa, for which he has two detention orders against him, as well as 20 homicides in La Paz.
Of the detained, El Luigi was the first to speak, who said that they had left that day to go and get stationary to make laminated copies of the Municipal Police and State Police radio frequencies.
He added that El Grande was reorganizing the structure of "Los Damaso" in La Paz, and that he wanted to give a copy of the radio keys to every one of the five cells that were operating in kidnapping and crimes, so that they would know how to mobilize to ambush and kill members of opposing groups.
The gun man commented that El Grande or El Chucky had returned from Culiacan, Sinaloa on the 5th of April, on the orders of "Los 28", because it was chaos and everything was disorganized, after the fall of Sicarios and the persecution of La China and El Cochi, who were in hiding and had ventured out infrequently to carry out killings.
During his interrogation, El Luigi remembered having participated in no less than 20 executions in the wave of violence in the last few days, he was contracted at the rate of 7,500 pesos every two weeks.
The crimes were enumerated one by one, and they appear at the end of this article.
For his part, Abel Nahum Quintero Manjarrez or Cruz Alonso Lozoya Uriate, El Grande, laid bare the Fuerzas Especiales de Damaso, and declared that "actually they are operating with five cells, criminally commanded by me, El Cochi, La China, El Oso and El Navigator, who are working on the team to fight for control of the South Zone plaza against Los Pepillos and in the North Zone plaza against Los Mayitos.
In his first declarations he remembered that criminal structure of Los Damaso has been debilitated and with a high risk of leaving operations in this state., because the majority of Sicarios that knew the city, its territory and routes of escape have been detained and already we don't have people that can support the operation logistically.
The criminal head of Sicarios explained that " already I had moved to Sinalao when I knew they were after me, but I was sent for to return, because the Sicarios that were in charge, didn't know the thugs or the movements of the city, and so were engaging in too many battles during operations. ( Otis: see link to article on his persecution).
The Sicario accepted that after the captures of cells like those of Victor Vidal Barraza, El Vidal or El Victor, and that of Jose Antoino Martinez Rosas, El Furby, it began to impact on the operations of the organization that fought for control of the La Paz plazas, and since then we have lost the ability to secure the objective of Los Mayitos in the North Zone and Los Pepillos in the South Zone.
When his captors asked who was working, El Grande, without reservation accepted that it was for "Los 28" and explained, after the fracture of Los 28 and Los Pepillos, "I took the decision to stay with Los 28, because they offered me more, and offered me more input into the people that were chosen to be killed".
The Sicario related that when the narco war started, "I was working with Los Pepillos in the South Zone, because Los Mayitos in the North Zone, because they had me and Los Arnulfos covered, when they knew we were selling the drugs for less, so we took refuge with Los Pepillos when the war exploded.
After they had killed El Pantera, Los Damaso sent for Los 28, a subversive group who fight in Sonora, Coahuila, Nuevo Leon and Tamaulipas in alliance with the Cartel del Golfo, and they took the fight to Los Pepillos.
And they sent for me, among others, because in certain manner we know the terrain, and started to fight for the plaza, but with time there were disagreements because Los 28 started to sell drugs and take over the dealers of Los Pepillos, which caused the rupture.
During his interrogation, El Grande said to the Police that El 28 was killed in a fire fight, he was not one of the brothers Jorge Alberto, Felipe Eduardo and Carlos Alberto Guajardo Garcia, identified as Los 28.
The killer said that it more or less the nickname that they have designated to some of the Sicarios, because we work with Los 28, we have assigned some keys to very special people like El 20, El 27 and El 28, which are reassigned when they kill or capture some of our colleagues who wore those codes.
In the case of the key of El 27, first it was assigned to Jose Angel Gonzalez Portillo, killed by rivals in a fire fight in Calles Ramirez and Manuel Marquez de Leon in the Centro Colonia.
And after to Jose Manuel Aquilar Lopez, killed by Police and Military in a fire fight around Avenida Santiago Oceguera.
In the case of the key of El 28, it was first assigned to Victor Vidal Barraza, detained in an operation at a safe house in the Calle Gilberto Mendoza of the Civilzadores Colonia, and later to Gabriel Antonio Leal Gutierrez, killed in a battle of the capture of El Grande.
Finally El Grande accepted to have participated in the kidnapping of a Madrina of the PGR, Rafael Banales Osuna, El Capi, who was taken from his home in the Calle Educacion Gratuita between the symbols and coat of arms in the Diana Laura Colonia in the South of La Paz.
The morning of the 24th of May, the informant was kidnapped by an armed group, who, according to his wife, a tall Marine dressed in the Secretary of the Navy uniform, knocked on the door very aggressively, and when asked what it was that he wanted, responded that he had a search warrant and ordered them to open the door.
The lady went to her husbands room and woke him up, he peeked through the window, then went and asked the subject what he wanted, and he responded again that he was from the Secretary of the Marina and he had a search warrant, when he opened the door 7 or 8 subjects entered.
They were all carrying rifles, and dressed in dark blue camouflage uniforms with the Marine blue bibs, they entered the bedrooms and began to check doors and drawers, waking up and frightening two young girls who were asking what was wrong.
The tall Marine asked her husband to accompany them to the road outside, and when she looked out, she saw a white surburban pickup and a grey one of the same model, they put him in the vehicle and drove off.
A day later he returned, and said nothing to his wife. According to El Grande he had sent a message to a delegate of the PGR, because their people were not complying with some business.
The crimes of El Grande
In Sinaloa, Maria Esperanza Zalava Estolano, 62 years of age, in the Guadalupe Victoria Colonia of Culiacan, Sinaloa.
Gemima Marin Serrano, 33 years of age, killed in the Villa del Real Fraccionamiento in Culiacan, Sinaloa.
In Baja California Sur:
Gerardo Geralso Mendez, El Gera, August 2014, La Paz
Luis Felipe Leyva Guzman, August 2014, La Paz
Jose Federico Gaxiola Osuna, El Pikas, September 2014, La Paz
Dany Algarith Castro Avendano, El Guacho, October 2014, La Paz
Francisco Javier Chaidez Perez, El Chinola, October 2014, La Paz
Carlos Antonio Mayoral Hernandez, El Mayoral
Mario Alberto Lopez Garcia, El Junior, October 2014, La Paz
Tomas Antonio Rico Castro, El 3
Ivan Castro Sandoval, El Pelon
Jose Molina Alarcon, El Molina, October 2014, La Paz
Saul David Gutierrez Nunez, El David
Jose Luis Ponce Ruiz, El Ponce
Juan Carlos Morales Vargas, El Pancho, or El Chapo, November 2014, La Paz
Juan Carlos Bareno Aviles, El Juanillo, January 2015, La Paz
Luis Israel Torres Inzunza, March 2015, La Paz
Erick Davalos Von Borstel, May 2015, La Paz
Martin Alonso Alamea Fausto, May 2015, La Paz
Everarado Silvano Monroy Aparicio, El Silvano, May 2015, La Paz
Zetatijuana sources PGJE, BCS
Original article in Spanish at Zetatijuana