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  1. #1
    Senior Member avenger's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Royse City, Texas

    Drug Violence Spills Over The Border From Mexico

    Aug 27, 2007 3:40 pm US/Central ... 63957.html

    Drug Violence Spills Over The Border From Mexico
    Read The FBI Congressional Testimony On Los Zetas And Border Violence
    (AP) LAREDO, Texas The scrawny young man at the defense table was only 17, and had only a peach-fuzz mustache in his mugshot. But authorities say he was already a seasoned assassin in the U.S. for some of Mexico's drug lords.

    The trial last month of American citizen Rosalio "Bart" Reta, combined with the case against a co-defendant and interviews with law enforcement officials, has cast a spotlight on a new danger along the border.

    Mexican drug lords locked in a bloody fight for control of a pipeline that runs from Mexico to Dallas and up through middle America have brazenly stationed hit squads and reconnaissance teams in Laredo.

    In the past two years, rival cartels have killed at least seven people in Laredo, including a victim stalked and killed near his job site and a man gunned down in the parking lot of a popular restaurant, U.S. authorities say. Nearly all the victims were mixed up in the drug trade themselves.

    "That river does not stop these people," said Webb County Sheriff's Maj. Doyle Holdridge, who for the past 30 years has been working drug cases along the Rio Grande, which separates Laredo from its Mexican sister city, Nuevo Laredo. The cities have a combined population of half a million.

    Over the past few years, the Mexican Gulf Cartel and its rival Sinaloa Cartel have carried out a terrifying bloodbath in Nuevo Laredo, where the traffickers have a saying: "Plata o plomo" -- "Silver or lead." So far, the worst of the violence has been confined to Mexico.

    "Our mission is to make sure it doesn't cross over," said Jesse Guillen, a Laredo prosecutor who obtained guilty pleas from Reta and another hit man for the Gulf Cartel earlier this year. "Is it under control? Let's see."

    Unlike many other drug-related killings, the Laredo slayings often involve careful planning, explicit orders and surveillance of law enforcement officers, Guillen said. And arrests aren't easy: In most cases, the killers flee back across the border.

    Also, the traditional taboos against involving family members and other civilians have disappeared.

    "These days, if they have a problem, they kill it," Holdridge said. "If they have to hose down a car full of five people, they'll do it."

    Gone also is the grudging respect once accorded U.S. law enforcement. Holdridge said he and his wife have occasionally been followed by suspected cartel members as they drive around town. In fact, Reta had the make, model and plates of a law officer's personal car, Guillen said.

    Reta, nicknamed for the cartoon character Bart Simpson, admitted being part of a hit squad that was ordered in January 2006 to kill a man who was dating a drug lord's girlfriend. The squad of three Americans mistakenly killed the target's stepbrother, 27-year-old Noe Flores, instead, prosecutors say.

    The hit squad's members -- all Americans -- lived in the U.S., awaiting orders from the drug lords. Investigators said they are unsure whether other hit squads are living in this country.

    Reta's co-defendant Gabriel Cardona, 20, pleaded guilty and was sentenced to 80 years in prison. Although he probably would have gotten a shorter sentence if he had been convicted at a trial, "he was scared to death" of his bosses, Guillen said.

    Reta chose to go to trial, but as the testimony started to reveal details of the cartel's organization and tactics, he pleaded guilty and was sentenced to 40 years. A defense attorney and others involved in the case received threats.

    Reta, who was only 16 when Flores was killed, still faces charges in the killing of another Laredo man, gunned down outside a restaurant, also allegedly on the orders of the Gulf Cartel.

    Reta told investigators that the Zetas, former Mexican soldiers now working as Gulf Cartel enforcers, trained him in marksmanship and grenade-throwing at a boot camp in Mexico, Guillen said. Reta's right arm bears a tattoo of "Santa Muerte," the pseudo patron saint of drug traffickers whose image frequently shows up on candles or statues with drug loads.

    Reta told a U.S. investigator he participated in about 30 cartel-ordered killings in Mexico, starting when he was 13, and sought extradition to the United States for the Laredo murders after he was arrested in connection with a grenade explosion that killed four people at a nightclub in Monterrey, Mexico.

    Reta, Cardona and other hit men were paid $500 a week, according to Laredo police. When a job was done, they could get a bonus of $10,000 and two kilos of cocaine, police said in court documents. For the Flores killing, Reta and Cardona got $500 each. (The intended victim was eventually killed.)

    The third alleged member of the hit squad made bail after his arrest and fled to Mexico before trial. Warrants have also been issued for the alleged middleman in the hit and the cartel's reputed boss in Nuevo Laredo, but both men are believed to be in Mexico.

    The cartels have studied U.S. law enforcement procedures and know how to stymie officers.

    Holdridge said the cartels sometimes send out "suicide loads" -- smaller piles of marijuana or cash that traffickers know will get caught by local law enforcement. Such busts tie up officers with paperwork for hours, giving traffickers time to drive a bigger load through unnoticed, Holdridge said.

    In recent months, the violence around Laredo and Nuevo Laredo has quieted down, and no other hit squads have been discovered.

    But "it's like shark's teeth," Guillen said. "You pull one out and another one grows in."
    Never give up! Never surrender! Never compromise your values!*
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  2. #2
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    reno, nev
    Border patrol agents are not trained to handle this kind of situations. War has been declared on this country by drug cartels and military is needed on the border to protect our country and our people from drug. They are even using our national parks in our country to grow they drugs.
    Drug cartels, illegal aliens and gangs have declared war and they are winning.
    We may be winning in Iraq but we are losing big time here. Illegal aliens, drugs and gangs have taken over this country and dare us to do anything about it are they will sue our govenment or have Mexico intervene. We have got to take our county back.

  3. #3

    Join Date
    Jan 1970
    Hartwell GA
    Sometimes i think we are under planed extermination. And our government doesn't care. Or is helping.

  4. #4

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