'El Guerrero', the Zetas founder who wore a grenade necklace

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MX
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'El Guerrero', the Zetas founder who wore a grenade necklace

MX
Note: This post includes excerpts from the Wikipedia article of Luis Alberto Guerrero Reyes ("El Guerrero", The Warrior), which I created on 27 December 2019.



Luis Alberto Guerrero Reyes ("El Guerrero") was no ordinary outlaw. He wore a grenade around his neck. When his bullet-ridden body was found inside a vehicle in Matamoros on 10 May 2004, authorities took over eight hours to remove and defuse it. Guerrero Reyes was killed by unknown assailants as he left a discotheque in Matamoros; his bodyguard Leonardo García González, a former Matamoros police officer, was also killed trying to defend him. Officials stated that Garcia was holding another grenade because he intended to use it against the attackers. But Matamoros residents woke up to a Mother's Day marred by a sadder story: among the dead were three teenage girls: Perla Lourdes García Torres, Rosa Isela Purata Cárdenas and Nancy López González, who were with the two men inside the discotheque.

Early life and background

Guerrero Reyes joined the Mexican Army on 1 March 1987 as an infantry soldier of the 70th Infantry Battalion in the Mexican state of Puebla. From 11 April to 17 June 1989, he enrolled as a paratrooper in the Parachute Rifle Brigade (BFP). When Guerrero Reyes joined the BFP, it was one of the elite branches of the military along with Grupo Aeromóvil de Fuerzas Especiales (GAFE). In the BFP, he became a specialist in explosives, martial arts and grenade launchers.

Adept in combat, Guerrero Reyes was promoted twice and reportedly received military and counter-drug training in the United States. As a military officer, he was also assigned to work temporarily in the National Counter-Narcotics Institute (INCD), where he met other military members whom he would later work with in organized crime. Enticed by what the underworld had to offer, he deserted from the military on 4 January 1999.

Organized crime

Guerrero Reyes then joined the Gulf Cartel and became a member of the cartel's newly-created paramilitary group, known as Los Zetas, which was largely composed of ex-commandos. He was hired to work for the cartel boss Osiel Cárdenas Guillén, and was assigned under Zetas leader Arturo Guzmán Decena ("Z-1"). He went by the code names "Z-5" and "Z12-HK44".

According to the testimony of Agustín Hernández Martínez, a close associate of Cardenas Guillen who later became a protected witness under the code name "Rafael", Guerrero Reyes was also an instructor for new Zetas recruits. Under the instruction of Guzman Decena, Guerrero Reyes and former Army lieutenant Carlos Hau Castañeda led Los Zetas's first training course at a farm known as Punta Selva in Matamoros. He was also suspected of being involved in two massive prisons breaks in Matamoros and Apatzingán, where several Gulf/Zetas members were rescued.

Known for his arrogance and violent behavior, Guerrero Reyes had an arrest warrant issued for his suspected involvement in multiple killings from 12 February to 10 March 2003. He was suspected of killing his girlfriend Erica Edith González, who was found dead in the rural community of La Venada along with two other people, and of his wife Jovanna Lizbeth Melchor Ceballos, who was killed with another man. Guerrero Reyes was also a main suspect in the murder of kingpin Edelio López Falcón ("El Yeyo"). López Falcón was a former member of the Gulf Cartel, but left to join a rival criminal group after he encountered differences with the cartel after Gilberto García Mena ("El June") was arrested in 2001. Several within the cartel blamed López Falcón for his arrest. Cárdenas Guillén reportedly commissioned Guerrero Reyes and others, including Zetas members Jesús Enrique Rejón Aguilar ("El Mamito"), Heriberto Lazcano Lazcano ("El Lazca") and/or Óscar Guerrero Silva ("El Winniepooh"), to execute him. López Falcón was killed inside a restaurant on 6 May.

Shootout and death

Guerrero Reyes was a regular in strip clubs and night clubs in Matamoros for several years. But on 10 May 2004, he was killed by unknown assailants in a drive-by shooting in Matamoros. The attack occurred before dawn near the Wild West discotheque while Guerrero Reyes was inside a silver Jeep Liberty.



Near the crime scene, the police arrested Jose Jesus Quintanilla (aged 19). He was driving a white Ford Mustang that authorities suspected was used by the shooters as a getaway vehicle. A police officer identified Quintanilla as a local customs broker. It was later revealed that Guerrero Reyes was killed by four unidentified hitmen who carried out the attack in a white taxi.

The motive behind the attack was not revealed, and state police chief Arturo Pedroza Aguirre said it was too early to determine if a drug cartel was involved. However, Mexican investigators not authorized to speak with the press stated that it was organized crime-related. U.S. and Mexican authorities did not confirm if the attack was carried out by the Gulf Cartel or conducted by a rival gang, which had sprung up in high numbers after the arrest of Cardenas Guillen. The killers were never arrested. To this day, Perla Lourdes' stepmother still holds a Mother's Day basket given to her by her stepdaughter the day before the teenager was killed in the shootout.

Sources and notes
* Wikipedia article is under free domain
* Multiple sources, see here for more details
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Re: 'El Guerrero', the Zetas founder who wore a grenade necklace

MaxiMillian2k19
Thanks for the read, MX!
BTW wasn't Arturo Pedroza Aguirre killed in 2002?
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Re: 'El Guerrero', the Zetas founder who wore a grenade necklace

Sky98
In reply to this post by MX
Can you write Omar Lormendez Pitalua's biography ?
MX
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Re: 'El Guerrero', the Zetas founder who wore a grenade necklace

MX
In reply to this post by MaxiMillian2k19
No. You’re referring to his murder attempt after El Chacho was killed. He was alive well into the mid 2000s. In 2006 he was suspended for 20 days for an infraction (see pages 16-17).

I’m working on his bio but it’s taking longer than usual because most of his info is found in print repositories in Mexico City and Tamaulipas. I’ve had to visit them a few times but haven’t finished yet.
MX
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Re: 'El Guerrero', the Zetas founder who wore a grenade necklace

MX
In reply to this post by Sky98
Sure. I’ll try to work on him next. Please share any info you have of him. I think he was released from prison, wasn’t he?
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Re: 'El Guerrero', the Zetas founder who wore a grenade necklace

Sky98
MX
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Re: 'El Guerrero', the Zetas founder who wore a grenade necklace

MX
OK, thanks. Found some info on him while he was in the Nuevo Laredo plaza with Comandante Mateo and others. I’ll share it once it’s done.
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Re: 'El Guerrero', the Zetas founder who wore a grenade necklace

MaxiMillian2k19
In reply to this post by MX
Oh sorry, I thought he was the guy that got shot at the Gym in 2002, Three months right after El Chachos death
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Re: 'El Guerrero', the Zetas founder who wore a grenade necklace

MaxiMillian2k19
In reply to this post by MX
I believe it's the story mentioned in CODENAME Karen's confession of being Zeta hitman, He practiced in the Michoacan war where Los Zetas supported LFM by resisting the BLO/CDS invasion into their turf. Karen was arrested alongside Z-10 in 2005. after he got freed he was killed by group of Los Zetas( I guess the ones from the Nectar Lima) members brought from the Nuevo Laredo in Mexico City at the Shopping Plaza in 2015 if my memory recalls correctly, due to pointing the Z-40 as being his leader and the drug trafficker as full, I even heard that Z-40's attorney tried to unsuccessfully bribe him


EDIT: here's the very informative story about the incident and an unsuccessful bribe

http://borderland-beat-forum.924382.n3.nabble.com/Protected-Witness-quot-Karen-quot-Killed-I-think-I-have-an-ID-td4085574.html#a4086241
Kudos to @Bjeff

Z-40 may have ordered the killing of protected witness KAREN, behind the bars, so he couldn't testify against him.
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Re: 'El Guerrero', the Zetas founder who wore a grenade necklace

MaxiMillian2k19
This post was updated on .
In reply to this post by MX
It sucks that Mexican system doesn't offer any good Security services to the important protected witnesses against the Important Capo figures

Without any Security assistance from the Mexican Government he was the Dead Meat Walking alive for sure, Whether in the Mexico City or in the Nuevo Laredo, Tamaulipas.
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Re: 'El Guerrero', the Zetas founder who wore a grenade necklace

leChef
This post was updated on .
In reply to this post by MX
Great job as usual, MX.

Just wanted to add that from what I understand, the authorities believed that Barbie was behind the execution, and it is very plausible as the Los Negros/Los Zetas conflict was ongoing at the time. I read an older story on some grudge there, but could not find the source.

However, if you need a source:
https://www.proceso.com.mx/218063/la-barbie-acusa-a-los-zetas-de-la-violencia-en-nl
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Re: 'El Guerrero', the Zetas founder who wore a grenade necklace

leChef
In reply to this post by MaxiMillian2k19
@Maxi: Thanks, I am Bjeff btw
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Re: 'El Guerrero', the Zetas founder who wore a grenade necklace

MaxiMillian2k19
@Lechef: It's always good to know, :), I think its hardly guess if anyone from Sinaloa back than could have such intel about Z-5 also in Matamoros an Gulf cartel stronghold and even back than, about 15 years ago. but anyways, nothing is impossible.

an mention from "Mexican Cartels: An Encyclopedia of Mexico's Crime and Drug Wars" book
But the thing is that there are not even mentions about exact details of  Z-5 death by any of protected witness, even from the La Barbie's side

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Re: 'El Guerrero', the Zetas founder who wore a grenade necklace

leChef
@Maxi: If anyone knew how los Zetas operated, it would have been La Barbie. Los Negros applied the same tactics as the zetas, in fact, many of the violent tactics that have been associated with los Zetas was first done by Barbie.

Although Matamoros was a CDG stronghold, it has never been pure CDG or unpenetrable. But we will probably never know for sure, only if someone writes to Barbie and get him to confess.
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Re: 'El Guerrero', the Zetas founder who wore a grenade necklace

Sky98
In reply to this post by MaxiMillian2k19
MX
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Re: 'El Guerrero', the Zetas founder who wore a grenade necklace

MX
In reply to this post by leChef
Thanks, leChef!

When was Los Negros formed?

From what I've found in several sources, La Barbie was originally part of Los Chachos and ordered the attack when he was still with them. Pedroza said two additional Chachos gangsters, Alejandro Cárdenas (also known as Raúl Emmanuel Cárdenas Castillo) and José Ángel Fernández Manríquez, were involved.

My understanding is that when El Chacho was killed, his group quickly fell apart and La Barbie and others regrouped (maybe to form or join Los Negros, not sure).




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Re: 'El Guerrero', the Zetas founder who wore a grenade necklace

MaxiMillian2k19
This post was updated on .
Los Negros, Not sure about exact date but maybe in 2003? After they attacked and chased attorney general of NL in Aug, 2003 for freeing two detained Zetas. Barbie began actively fighting Los Zetas presence in Nuevo Laredo shortly after Osiel Cardenas Guillen was arrested, when he called Z-3 with threats and when he told him to free the territories from Nuevo Laredo till Reynosa

Los Chachos members being arrested in 2004 http://www.narcoticnews.com/news/cartel/2004/17-members-of-los-chachos-were-arrested-in-tamaulipas-mexico/
MX
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Re: 'El Guerrero', the Zetas founder who wore a grenade necklace

MX
In reply to this post by MX
@Chivis: FYI, I replied to a comment/question on the mainboard post regarding his "officer" title. I know the post is old so you may have to go back to dig through my pending response. I appreciate the support.

I'm working on another interesting Zetas founder bio in the meantime. I look forward to posting it.
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Re: 'El Guerrero', the Zetas founder who wore a grenade necklace

Frank
In reply to this post by MX
On the topic of biographies I can not find much info on Paul Lir Alexander. A three letter asset Who worked both sides, under orders for the string pullers, moving yay from Columbia to Miami. Ex Mossad, CIA and the Cali cartel. Not sure if there is a Mex connect, however since mysteriously disappearing from a Brazilian jail he is likely deep in the game on the extreme down low. This guy is old and rich rich rich. Far as I can surmise still very active which almost ensures business with Mexican drug lords if not an actual cartel. If you have the time and or interest in this, It would be nice to know more about this mysterious figure. Thank you, my friend. Either way