Known as "Las Flakas" (Skinny Girls), young women are taking up lives of crime, becoming effective agents for the cartels' causes. Since the chance of being assassinated is great, the title of "La Flaka" has been passed from one female to another.
The Daily Beast named the first "La Flaca" as Veronica Mireya Moreno Carreon, who worked for Los Zetas and was arrested in 2011. The second was Nancy Manriquez Quintanar, who was also arrested in 2011.
The most recent to make headlines was Joselyn Alejandra Niño, who was found dismembered and stuffed in an ice chest along the US-Mexico border in April of 2015. The Gulf Cartel assassin's chopped up body was found along with another dismembered woman and a decapitated man in the back of a truck.
She made headlines after a photo of her toting an assault rifle with a smile went viral months before her murder.
Nino's death has been credited to La Gladys of the Zetas Cartel, who remains "at large terrorizing the communities of northern Mexico," Fox News reported.
"They are ideal killers; young, beautiful and reckless," Andrew Chesnut, a professor at Virginia Commonwealth University, told Fox News. "By keeping a low profile they avoid suspicion where men doing the same job would quickly find themselves in trouble."
Chesnut continued to explain that the young female assassins work their way up to become killers - beginning as low-level lookout workers or prostitutes. Some others are recruited in prison or were born into cartel families.
"There's an inextricable link between sex and death in the culture of these female killers," Chesnut told Fox News. "In seeking to be the most desired by the narco men, they seek also to be the most brutal among their group of peers. It's gone as far as having them worship the image of Saint Death in their own likenesses, dressed in lingerie."
Last year, another female killer known as "La Peque" (the little one) claimed to have had intercourse with beheaded corpses and bathed in and drank their blood. The 29-year -old member of the Sinaloa Cartel is currently in prison in Baja California Sur.
Melisa Margarita Calderon Ojeda, known as "La China", is another former assassin who is currently locked up in a Baja California Sur prison for homicide. She and her ex-partner, Eduardo Martin Alvarado "El Kumi," were ordered to kill another rival assassin, but they accidentally killed his father instead, according to reports.
Though not an official assassin, Ann Marie Hernandez, known as "La Muñeca," was another leading female cartel member who was arrested in 2015 for drug smuggling and bribery charges. She and her ex-husband Daniel Ledezma smuggled thousands of kilograms of cocaine through an El Paso border crossing where he worked.
Re: Ruthless, but charming female members are taking over Mexico's drug cartels
Daniel Ledezma was a US Customs Inspector who was arrested and sentenced to nine years in prison for allowing cartel connected cocaine to enter the US through the El Paso port of entry. His wife, La Muñeca, remained a fugitive for some time but was ultimately located by the U.S. Marshal's service and returned to the U.S. to face a federal judge.
Considering the large amount of illegal drugs that Ledezma knowingly allowed to enter the U.S. and the fact that he prostituted himself, his position of trust and repeatedly allowed drugs to enter, a nine year sentence was rather lenient. This bastard and every other law enforcement officer that betrays their position should receive the maximum allowable sentence and have to serve every single day.