Tagged: Piedras Negras

Cartel violence spills into Texas as gunmen storm past U.S. border security

(BREITBART) — PIEDRAS NEGRAS, Coahuila — Two cartel gunmen fleeing from a raging gun battle with Mexican authorities ran through U.S. border security measures twice as they crossed into Texas and back; using their vehicle to ram barriers.

The cartel gunmen were able to cross into Eagle Pass through International Bridge #2 by running the security checkpoints. Shortly after they crossed back through a second bridge that was closed at the time. The gunmen used their vehicle to ram security barriers and later ditched it escape on foot.

The violence began overnight near the rural community of Nava, Coahuila, when authorities received information about two gunmen riding in a late model white Toyota Tundra, information provided to Breitbart Texas by Coahuila law enforcement revealed.

State police officers with a special investigative unit spotted the vehicle along Boulevard Carranza near the intersection with Airport Boulevard in the border city of Piedras Negras. Officers tried to pull over the gunmen but were met with gunfire as they sped off–setting off a high-speed chase.

The gunmen were able to reach the main plaza in Piedras Negras, Plaza de Las Culturas, where they once again engaged law enforcement in a short firefight. As they made their way to the International Bridge #2, gunmen rammed their way through other vehicles and barriers as they used the inbound lanes through Mexican Customs to reach the U.S. side of the bridge.

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Coahuila: How a border state government covered up a massacre of hundreds of people

(BREITBART) — PIEDRAS NEGRAS, Coahuila — Four years have passed since state authorities claimed to begin investigating how gunmen with Los Zetas cartel were able to kidnap, murder, and exterminate hundreds of victims from rural communities in this border state between 2011 and 2013. The case became one big cover up.

In early 2016, Breitbart Texas reported on how Los Zetas used ovens and 55-gallon drums to incinerate hundreds of victims from the northern part of the state. The massacre began in 2011 in Allende, Coahuila, but continued for two years throughout the region and in this city. It continued without any state authority making an effort to stop it while local news outlets were muffled. Years later, government officials confirmed that approximately 150 victims were incinerated inside the state prison in Piedras Negras.

At the time, the Coahuila Attorney General’s Office was run by Jesus Torres Chaires, an individual who was singled out in U.S. Court testimony as having received money from Los Zetas. The allegations against Torres Chaires were made by Rodrigo Humberto Uribe Tapia during a high-profile federal trial of a top Zeta associate in Texas.

The testimony pointed to Los Zetas giving millions to the state attorney general who in turn would give some of that money to the former Governor Humberto Moreira. As Breitbart Texas reported, Moreira is just one of various Mexican governors who were linked in U.S courts to Los Zetas. Court documents published by this outlet reveal that the U.S. government considered the entire structure of the Coahuila government to be a surrogate of Los Zetas cartel.

In an interview with Mexico’s Vanguardia, Torres Chaires claimed that the allegations about him taking money from Los Zetas were lies and he was trying to move on from the events of the massacre in Allende, which he described as things that just happened.

At the time of the massacre and in the years after, the top lawmen in the northern region of Coahuila were Santos Vasquez Estrada and Patricia Rivera Barrera, each during their respective term held the position of PGJE Delegate in Piedras Negras and oversaw most of the rural communities where Los Zetas carried out their massacres. Individuals interviewed by Breitbart Texas revealed that neither of the two officials made any effort to investigate, identify, or target any of the real individuals behind the massacres or the masterminds behind the current drug traffickers in the area. Since the massacre, authorities have publicized the charging of various low-level Zeta bosses; however, the real actors behind the various massacres in the state have escaped scrutiny.

While Vasquez left the PGJE and is currently a criminal defense attorney, Rivera Barrera continues to work at the agency. Breitbart Texas was able to confirm that Rivera Barrera lost her top post in the PGJE after she traveled to Mexico City to take an integrity test commonly called “examen de confianza” — she failed. Local news outlets erroneously reported that Rivera Barrera had been fired from her job in early 2016.

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Failed kidnapping kills three in Mexican border city

(BREITBART) — PIEDRAS NEGRAS, Coahuila — Authorities in this border city continue to probe a failed kidnapping that turned into a triple murder outside of a local junkyard. While local media have claimed that the murder was a gang hit, the victim’s relatives revealed that the case was something else.

Preliminary information points to the victims decorating a local business for a party in the Laguito Mexicano neighborhood when the shooting happened. The victims have been identified as 28-year-old Jorge “Copetes” Rosales and his employees Aaron “N” and El Pepo. The murder scene is approximately six miles from this city’s downtown area.

According to the victim’s relatives, two vehicles with gunmen followed Rosales to his business where they tried to kidnap him in an apparent effort to collect a ransom. The victim tried to fight back while two of his employees rushed to his aid. The gunmen shot them and fled the area. Days after the murder, local residents reported that a second kidnapping attempt had taken place but the victims had managed to escape unharmed.

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Mexican cartel stockpiling grenade launchers at Texas border

(BREITBART) — PIEDRAS NEGRAS, Coahuila — The Mexican cartel known as Los Zetas has been stockpiling Soviet-era rocket propelled grenades, body armor, assault rifles, and ammunition in this border city.

The discovery was made after a special state police unit designed to clash head-on with cartels, gathered intelligence about a business being used to stockpile weapons, information provided to Breitbart Texas by Coahuila authorities revealed.

Following their investigation and after receiving an anonymous tip about a truck with gunmen arriving at the business, investigators obtained a search warrant and had members of Fuerza Coahuila raid a local junkyard in the Buena Vista neighborhood of the city. Because of the high-risk operation, federal police officers and the military arrived to the house to provide backup.

Authorities were not able to locate the gunmen but found five, Soviet-era rocket-propelled grenades, a launcher, 15 tactical vests with bulletproof metal plates, assault rifles, various loaded ammunition magazines, 19 marijuana bundles, and an SUV without license plates.

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Texas trucker found murdered near Mexican border city

(BREITBART) — PIEDRAS NEGRAS, Coahuila — A commercial truck driver from the border city of Eagle Pass was murdered in this border city setting off an investigation that continues to puzzle local authorities. The truck driver has been reported missing in Texas days prior to the discovery of his body in Mexico.

Recently authorities in this border state responded to a ranch called San Vicente not far from Piedras Negras in regards to the discovery of a body showing an advanced state of decomposition. Crime scene investigators documented the scene where the body was found and transferred the body to a local morgue.

The victims’ truck, a black Ford Expedition, was discovered at a nearby ranch called El Saucito, leading investigators to believe that the victim was murdered and dumped.

The body was described as being a male in his mid 30’s to early 40’s wearing work boots, jeans, and a white t-shirt. At the morgue authorities confirmed that the victim was Oscar Ramon Lopez Alfaro, an trucker from Eagle Pass who had been reported missing to Texas authorities by his relatives earlier this month.

Preliminary information points to Alfaro having been kidnapped by unknown gunmen shortly after crossing into Coahuila, being taken to the location where he was found, and being murdered. Investigators had not released the cause of death, which they reported was not easily noticeable due to the advances state of decomposition.

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Gunmen execute young couple, set vehicle on fire near Texas border

(BREITBART) — PIEDRAS NEGRAS, Coahuila — Authorities continue to investigate why a group of gunmen executed a young couple on the banks of the Rio Grande River and set their vehicle on fire.

Coahuila state investigators recently responded to the banks of the Rio Grande River near the Santa Maria neighborhood where they found a late model Jeep Commander fully engulfed in flames. Neighbors had called authorities after spotting the vehicle on fire.

As authorities got closer, they discovered a woman and a man laying in a pool of blood near the vehicle. The victims had been shot in the head but the woman was still alive.

Emergency medical personnel rushed the woman to a local hospital where she later died from her injuries. Soon after the murder, authorities were able to identify the victims as 28-year-old Valentin Guerrero and 24-year-old Montserrat Reyes Galaviz.

Authorities have not made a motive for the murder public. However, the border city of Piedras Negras has a long history of being a drug trafficking corridor for the Los Zetas drug cartel. Unlike other cartels, Los Zetas have sought to distinguish themselves through their ruthlessness and gory methods of executions.

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Los Zetas gunmen swim into Texas during firefight to escape

(BREITBART) — PIEDRAS NEGRAS, Coahuila — A group of five gunmen from the Los Zetas cartel crossed into Texas to escape from Mexican police after a firefight on the banks of the Rio Grande.

Members of Coahuila State Police followed information about an upcoming drug shipment to a rural area on the banks of the Rio Grande. They spotted five gunmen trying to cross drug bundles into Texas. As soon as the gunmen saw the police officers, they began to fire their weapons trying to keep them away. Mexican authorities fought off the attack forcing the gunmen to retreat. The gunmen left the drugs behind as they crossed the Rio Grande into Texas. Once on the U.S. side, they gunmen disappeared and have not been caught.

Breitbart Texas has confirmed with Mexican authorities that the firefight took place a little over two weeks ago just outside the El Moral rural community near the Mexican city of Piedras Negras, Coahuila. The scene of the shootout is not far from the Texas border city of Eagle Pass.

The gun battle on the edge of the river, was the result of an ongoing investigation into the current operational structure of the Cartel Del Noreste (CDN) faction of the Los Zetas cartel. Late last month, Coahuila police officers arrested the number two leader of the CDN in Piedras Negras. The arrest came after a fierce gun battle near the Rio Grande. According to authorities, the leader was only identified as 25-year-old Ernesto (last-name-unknown) who claimed to be the second in command for the cartel in the area.

In his statements to police, the man claimed that the criminal organization was preparing for possible efforts by their rivals to take over the “plaza” or territory from the CDN. The investigation led to the thwarted drug smuggling attempt that turned into a gun battle.

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The Zetas cartel turned a Mexican prison into a death camp

(VICE NEWS) — Members of the notorious Zetas drug cartel turned the prison where they were being held in northern Mexico into a death camp where they tortured and killed around 150 people, and then incinerated the bodies or dissolved them in acid, the authorities say.

José Ángel Herrera, the chief prosecutor for cases of disappeared people in the state of Coahuila, made the allegations on Wednesday while announcing warrants to arrest five of the prisoners allegedly involved — at least some of whom are still behind bars.

Herrera said that the investigation refers to the period between 2009 and 2012 when the Zetas had near complete control of the prison near the city of Piedras Negras, just over the border from Eagle Pass in Texas.

He said this week’s arrests for the atrocities allegedly committed in the prison relate to the cases of the first seven disappeared people who investigators believe they have confirmed were among the victims. That proof, however, relies primarily on information from dozens of interviews with imprisoned witnesses and some of those involved, rather than on physical evidence.

According to José Juan Morales, spokesman for the investigation, the Zetas were allowed to leave the Piedras Negras prison at night to kidnap their victims, sometimes wearing fake police and army uniforms.

The remains of those killed were then, the investigation found, dumped in the nearby San Rodrigo river and in the Rio Bravo estuary.

But while the authorities say they have found bones in the river, they add that these are in such a bad state that it has not been possible to identify whether they came from the prison, or belonged to any of those who might have died there.

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Mexican cartel armored trucks found near border

PIEDRAS NEGRAS, Coahuila — Special police units in this border state seized two trucks modified with makeshift armor. The armored trucks are commonly used by cartel members operating near the Texas border.

The most recent seizure took place early in the morning on Tuesday when members of the Fuerza Coahuila police force were carrying out foot patrols near the area known as Sierra de Acuña. The mountainous region is immediately south of the rural area between Del Rio and Big Bend National Park. In an effort to slow down Mexican drug cartels, Fuerza Coahuila has been actively patrolling the mountainous area just south of the Texas border resulting in numerous seizures. Despite being a busy drug corridor, the Department of Homeland Security assigns minimal resources and agents to patrol the area.

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