Cartel’s are spying on U.S. law enforcement agents in order to assassinate their informants. A Mexican drug gang, operating under the Sinaloa Cartel, is surveilling U.S. law enforcement personnel in an effort to identify confidential informants and then have them murdered.
The Sinaloa Cartel (also known as the Sinaloa Federation) is an international drug trafficking, money laundering, and organized crime syndicate. The U.S Intelligence community considers the Sinaloa Cartel “the most powerful drug trafficking organization in the world.”
According to a report issued by the FBI, this cartel operation is currently taking place in southern Arizona, from the base of Agua Prieta, Mexico.
Agua Prieta is located on the border with Douglas, Arizona, approximately two hours southeast of Tucson, Arizona. The desert area in this portion of southern Arizona is very volatile because rival drug smuggling organizations fight for the valuable smuggling routes.
The Sinaloa Cartel has formed alliances with local gangs to help protect their territory and their shipments from rip gangs known as “Bajadores.” These rip gangs roam the desert mountains, along known smuggling routes, looking for drug loads to ambush and steal.
Consequently the smuggling organizations are forced to deploy anti-rip teams to provide security for these drug loads. These smuggling organizations also utilize mountain top to mountain top counter-surveillance lookouts. These covert lookouts are known as cartel scouts and over they years, they have become more sophisticated.
The scouts are frequently equipped with long-range rifles and surveillance equipment such as high-powered binoculars and walkie-talkie radios, allowing them to communicate with the smuggling loads and security teams moving along their designated routes below on U.S. soil.
This “Groupo Delta” has now been tasked with surveilling U.S. agents specifically in Arizona and it is highly possible this operation will expand to include other border states.
The Sinaloa cartel has traditionally been known to smuggle vast amounts of marajuna and cocaine into the U.S., though a 2016 study entitled “On Narco-coyotaje: Illicit Regimes and Their Impacts on the US-Mexico Border,” by professors Howard Campbell and Jeremy Slack of the University of Texas at El Passo, reveals the cartels’ expansion into the realm of human trafficking. Additionally, intelligence assets have learned that the Sinaloa Cartel has formed alliances with two powerful Chinese Triads, Sun Yee On and the 14K Triad, to acquire the chemicals needed to create highly-addictive synthetic drugs like Methamphetamines.
As the sophistication, reach and diversification of these criminal enterprises increase and their efforts to thwart investigators evolve into ever more resourceful means, we can only expect more crime, addiction and abuse.