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  1. #1
    Super Moderator Newmexican's Avatar
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    May 2005
    Heart of Dixie

    Los Zetas and Hezbollah, a Deadly Alliance of Terror and Vice

    Los Zetas and Hezbollah, a Deadly Alliance of Terror and Vice

    | July 10, 2013 |
    When Americans think about the illegal drug trade and black markets in Mexico, it is probable that they do not associate them with terrorism, or Islamic fundamentalism. One would think that drug cartels like Los Zetas, the most sophisticated and second most powerful drug cartel in Mexico would have enough allies and connections not to need the assistance of an organization like Hezbollah based half way across the world in Lebanon. However, there is proof that Hezbollah, as well as elements of the Iranian Quds force are functioning with cartels like Los Zetas, the most sophisticated drug cartel in Mexico. The combination of power hungry cartels like Los Zetas, and terrorist organizations like Hezbollah who want a presence in North America, in or near the United States inhibit U.S. companies from wanting to conduct business in Mexico, and should not remain unnoticed.

    The question is, how did this deadly alliance come into existence? For decades, immigrants, legal and illegal, have been arriving in Mexico from Lebanon. This population has been growing steadily, and has a certain level of favorability with Hezbollah. One of the creations of Hezbollah in Mexico is that of well-connected global drug dealers, like Ayman Joumaa. Joumaa, indicted in 2011 is of Lebanese heritage, and has been linked to Hezbollah, and Mexico’s Los Zetas cartel. With the help of the Los Zetas, and companies like The Lebanese Canadian Bank, Ayman Joumaa has laundered between $850 and $900 million.

    Joumaa is known among Israeli intelligence as being in contact with Hezbollah elite forces, and was connected to senior operatives handling Hezbollah drug operations. He has received bulk payments of U.S. dollars in Mexico City after coordinating drug shipments from South America to the Los Zetas cartel, receiving a cut for laundering and camouflaging funds. Drug and contraband profits were disguised through the trading and selling of used cars through an exchange in Africa with the help of Beirut exchange houses. Eventually, similar fraud rings connected to Joumaa were discovered throughout North and South America, and the Middle East. Various methods of investment fraud are typically used by drug dealers to cover their tracks. Many fraud rings use creative investment tactics that can pass as legal activity if not scrutinized. One such operation involved the selling of thorough-bred horses to cover up the trade of millions of dollars in fraudulent drug money.

    Since 2005, Iran and Hezbollah have developed a presence in Latin America, opening 17 cultural centers, and forming relations with the Mexican drug cartels. 200,000 immigrants from Lebanon and Syria, many of whom are illegal residents, live in Mexico, and have established residence with the help of drug cartels like Los Zetas, the most technically advanced of Mexico’s drug cartels. Those who are sympathetic to Islamic extremist movements make perfect recruits for the drug trade because they understand how illegal activity in the Americas empowers whoever wishes to weaken the power of U.S. sovereignty. As shown by the increase of Islamic missionaries in Mexico, as well as the growing influence of Hezbollah and Iran, it is clear that Islamists are trying to win the hearts and minds of the Mexican people. However, beneath these seemingly peaceful developments lie the fact that Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard and Quds forces are partnering with major Mexican drug cartels. They are learning Mexican culture, as well as Spanish, and are starting to blend in with native-born Mexicans.

    Hezbollah has training bases and sleeper cells in Mexico and South America. They also assist drug cartels with skills in bomb-making and explosives. Hezbollah has also created tunnels on the American border that are extremely similar to those dividing Gaza and Egypt. These tunnels are perfect for the transport of illegal conventional and biological weapons to contacts in the United States. Weaponry created by Hezbollah is capable of killing hundreds of thousands of people in major U.S. cities.

    Former Assistant Secretary of State for Western Hemisphere Affairs, Roger Noriega believes that an attack on U.S. personnel installations by Hezbollah is possible. It is known that they have expanded from their operations in Paraguay, Brazil and Argentina, and are gaining ground in Central America and Mexico.

    The relationship between Hezbollah and Los Zetas has almost touched down on American soil. Los Zetas was to be paid to bomb the Israeli Embassy in Washington, and the Saudi and Israeli embassy in Argentina. Why is the combination of well-connected drug dealers, terrorist organizations like Hezbollah, and the Zetas such a dangerous combination? It is a money laundering operation that has the power to supersede local government, weaken communities, and make people subject to criminal tyranny. It is highly possible that this threat could become a reality in the United States. In 2011, Iran’s Quds forces attempted an assassination against the Saudi Ambassador to the United States enlisting the use of the Los Zetas cartel. Luckily, this plot was thwarted by agents in the United States Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA).

    The Los Zetas Cartel is a deadly crime machine that diversifies in illegal drugs, human trade, money laundering, and the exchange of illegal weaponry. Many of its members were recruited from police and armed forces in Mexico. Techniques involving ambushes, defensive positions, and intelligence used by the military are now applied by Mexico’s criminal syndicates. Los Zetas is prominent in 6 Mexican states, and actively infringes on government solvency in northeastern Tamaulipas. Many view the Mexican state of Guerrero as one where the power of Los Zetas narco-criminals is equal to that of the local authorities. Los Zetas has even siphoned $1billion dollars in fuels from state-run oil producer, Pemex through their pipelines. In Tamaulipas, five people were killed as Los Zetas sought to take control of a Pemex well. Some of Los Zetas’ allies are among the most powerful cartels in the world, including Beltrán-Leyva, the Juarez and Tijuana cartels, Bolivian drug clans, and ’Ndrangheta.

    It is understandable why the Mexican government would be apprehensive about marginalizing the power of Mexican drug cartels. They have seen many of their people die as a result of the war against the cartels. The Mexican economy also benefits greatly from the high profit margins of illicit drugs and other forms of illegal contraband. Latin America is home to one of the largest underground economies in the world. 600,000-800,000 people are smuggled through international borders every year, generating $16 billion each year in human trafficking and sexual exploitation. These staggering financial statistics have won over many law officers in Mexico who initially fought against the cartels.

    The lure of criminal activity and the drug trade, coupled with the presence of Hezbollah and Iranian Quds forces in neighboring Mexico present the United States with a major threat at its borders. Dr. Matthew Levitt, senior fellow and director of terrorism studies at The Washington Institute for Near East Policy, as reported in CNS in 2010 stated that Hezbollah’s ties to Latin American drug smugglers poses a “significant” threat for U.S. national security and “In the event the nuclear confrontation with Iran gets worse rather than better, having a militant organization like Hezbollah on, and even within our border- it certainly does pose a threat”. The obvious question is whether or not the United States is taking the necessary precautions to counter what is likely to become an even larger problem if left undeterred.


  2. #2
    Super Moderator Newmexican's Avatar
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    May 2005
    Heart of Dixie
    Saba Islamic Center Imam Nabbed with Hezbollah Cell in Mexico

    By Lee Kaplan, investigator, communications director, ACD fellow

    Rafic Labboun, an imam from the Shia Association Bay Area (SABA Islamic Center) in San Jose, California, has been arrested in Mexico by Mexican immigration authorities working in cooperation with the FBI and Homeland Security.

    Labboun was taken into custody with the two knownHezbollah agents from Belize, George Abdallah Elders and Justin Yasser Safa in Mérida, a Mexican city located in the Yucatan peninsula. Both men are citizens of Belize. Intelligence agencies in the United States were tracking this group as part of a cell of Hezbollah-linked Arab terrorists who were operating in Mexico and Central America. had previously exposed Labboun’s Hezbollah connections in the US.

    Mugshot of Rafic Mohammed Labboun (Allaboun)

    Labboun was released this summer from a federal prison, where he had served 27 months for credit card fraud that authorities suspected was linked to fundraising for Hezbollah here in the US. In that case, Labboun kited $102,000 in credit card purchases of gold in Saudi Arabia which involved defrauding several U.S. banks by creating a false line of credit between the banks.

    The money made its way to Lebanon and has never been returned, even though Labboun was required to pay back the money as per the agreement of release and subsequent his three year probationary term. Instead, Labboun fled to Mexico on a false passport from Belize. It is believevd he was helped by with the alleged Hezbollah agents with whom he was arrested.

    At the time of Labboun’s trial, prosecutors were only able to convict Labboun on credit card fraud as his connection with Hezbollah could not be conclusively proven at the time. However, as reported at the time, the SABA Mosque where Labboun is still considered an imams openly supports Hezbollah and the pro-Khomeinist regime in Iran.

    Mexican news reports stated that Labboun identified himself to Mexican immigration authorities according to his false passport from the government of Belize. The News reports also confirm that he was accompanied by five other people, two of whom are known by the FBI and Homeland Security to be Hezbollah agents in Belize. An armored vehicle was used in the operation.

    Intelligence agencies in the U. S. were tracking this group as part of a cell of Hezbollah-linked Arab terrorists operating in Mexico and Central America.

    Some security sources have even mentioned that since the cell’s capture, allegations are emerging that Labboun may even be linked to the 9/11 attack on the World Trade Center, however, law enforcement authorities are still in the process of sifting through evidence captured during the raid that could confirm this link.

    However, it is presumed that the fact that Labboun entered Mexico with two Hezbollah agents from Belize on a fake Belize passport while on parole in the U.S. provides the missing evidence of his direct link to Hezbollah. Moreover, Yasser Safa, one of the two Hezbollah agents accompanying him is related to Wafiq Safa, who is the head of the Hezbollah Coordination and Liaison Committee in Lebanon and is married to Hezbollah Chief Hassan Nasrallah’s sister. One security source has said this may indicate that Nasrallah personally authorized this escape attempt for Labboun.

    Labboun has been remanded to El Paso, Texas, by the FBI for further investigation. Labboun has an American wife, a Muslim convert and three daughters back in Lebanon, who he has not seen for three years. Some police sources believe he may not want them to come to the United States because his wife would be able to shed light on his relationship with Hezbollah as well as other illegal activities. This might account for his attempt to flee the U.S. in violation of his parole. Still others maintain he was always a Hezbollah financial courier who simply wanted to escape.

    As reported, Saba Islamic Center in San Jose supported Labboun throughout his trial, claiming he was innocent of any wrongdoing and giving him money and food after his trial in a federal court. Once Labboun was freed on probation, the mosque held a welcome home party for him. During his incarceration, a music video was released, referring to Labboun a “peace activist” and calling for his release from prison.

    Saba Islamic Center maintains it reaches out to the non-Shiite and non-Muslim community for interfaith dialog but undercover recordings and even the mosque’s own website have shown preaching against Jews and Christians is done within the mosque’s walls.

    Despite this, Saba Islamic Center is still enjoying political assistance from politicians like Democratic candidate for the House of Representatives Mike Honda, who is scheduled to appear at SABA for a luncheon on September 15, 2012, as part of his election campaign. Calls by this reporter to Honda’s office to inquire if he still plans on attending were not returned.

    Rep. Mike Honda (D)
    American citizens should be glad the FBI and Homeland Security were on top of this case, but Labboun and Saba Islamic Center are just the tip of the iceberg that needs to be watched very carefully as a possible war with Iran over nuclear weapons looms on the horizon.

    This article first appeared at on Monday, September 10, 2012.

    Rafic Labboun is an imam with the Northern California-based Shia Association of Bay Area (Saba Center of San Jose) and Fatimiyya Islamic Center of Hayward.

  3. #3
    Super Moderator Newmexican's Avatar
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    Heart of Dixie
    Original article in Spanish translation is available at the link.
    Hezbollah getting passports in Belize to travel from Mexico to U.S.

    Posted on February 27, 2013 by creeping

    Found this via an incoming search that hit our blog via Method used by Hezbollah to travel from Mexico to the U.S., connection Belize :: Latin America Current Events & News.

    1. In 2012 Labboun Rafic Mohammed (Muslim cleric) with alleged links to Hezbollah was arrested in Merida Mexico. He was also a fugitive from U.S. justice.

    2. He arrived in Yucatan and apparently used a network of Lebanese government officials. These officials colluded with parties in Belize who provided a fake passport from Belize.

    3. Labboun’s fake passport was in the name of Wilhelm Dyck. Dyck was a deceased Mennonite child. Labboun also possessed a drivers license in the same name.

    4. Razur Antonio Elias – Director of the Mexican Drug Observatory indicated in a report that Islamist organizations are linked to Mexican drug traffickers on the Yucatan Peninsula.
    Traffickers are providing passports, birth certificates, and drivers licenses from Belize. COST REPORTED $25,000.

    5. The network is also providing transfers of Hezbollah members with forged paperwork to pass through Mexico to the United States. Merida Mexicoappears to be the Nexus of this operation.

    Read Article

    More at, Who helped Hezbollah terrorist get Belizean passport and IDs?

    We have been able to establish that that very same day, a person posing to be Wilhelm Dyck made an application for a Belizean passport at the Passport Office in Belize City; that’s on the twenty-ninth of August, 2012 and that he paid a hundred dollars to expedite the process for the express issuance of the passport. And we’ve also been able to establish that the following day, a passport was indeed issued; that is the thirtieth of August, 2012, in the name of Wilhelm Dyck.

    “The information in the computer also had a photograph of the person purporting to e Wilhelm Dyck. And immediately upon pulling up the photograph, the senior immigration officer without any prompting from the police authorities said that that person looks like a Lebanese national. Which raised the question; which has to be asked to the relevant persons who accepted the application and processed the application: if there weren’t some alarms that went off in their head when they saw a person looking like he did appearing before them claiming to be Wilhelm Dyck. As you know, when you now apply for a passport, you have to physically go to the office and have your photo be taken. In the past, there was system where you would bring a photograph already taken, the J.P. would just sign the photograph and the birth certificate and would certify you as being the person who appears on the photograph and someone who they have known for a period of time. This instance, there is a Justice of the Peace that has now been detained and is being interviewed by police authorities. That person incidentally was the same person who had their home burnt down over the holidays and so she could not be immediately found yesterday. She has since been found and is now being interviewed.”

    That was several months ago. No news since on what appears to be infiltration in Belize.

  4. #4
    Administrator ALIPAC's Avatar
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    Terrorists inbound: Iran conflict & illegal immigration

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