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DEA AGENT KI KI CAMARENA was undercover for two years trying to infiltrate the GUADALAJARA CARTEL, at the time the biggest cartel in MEXICO. Kiki Camarena and Mexican reconnaissance pilot Alfredo Zavala Avelar were central in taking down the centerpiece of the Caro-Quintero clans operations in Chihuahua, a location called El Bufalo that had 13 pot farms ranging from 500 to 1,200 acres. Each of the farms had the capability of growing over one million plants each. The DEA claimed that the raid resulted in the seizure of 8,000 tons of marijuana (sixteen million pounds). .........
Michael Hooks,the man who ran the smuggling operation for the pot, laughs at that figure. "There might have been that much there," he told the Fort Worth Weekly when he recently surfaced for a few days, but some was still growing, some was drying, some was being cleaned. In any event, the Mexican government returned a lot of it within a week or so. And it was probably returned with apologies.Whatever the figure, it is among the biggest pot busts in history. On February 7th 1985, DEA agent Enrique Kiki Camarena Salazar was kidnapped, along with Alfredo Zavala Avelar, shortly after leaving the DEA Headquarters in Guadalajara on the way to meet his wife for lunch. (Two witnesses were rounded up that reported that as he left the consulate, he was surrounded by five gunmen and shoved into the backseat of a waiting car. The witnesses said the gunment appeared to be members of Mexican Secret Police.) ........When he didnt show up, Camarena's wife contacted US Ambassador John Gavin, who contacted Mexican authorities and asked that a search be started. The Mexican authorities werent quick to respond, so the US initiated Operation Camarena, stopping and searching every vehicle passing from Mexico into the US and turning the border crossing into a nightmare along its entire 2,000-mile span. One month later, on March 6th, someone tipped authorities that the bodies of both
Camarena and Zavala could be found on a roadside 60 miles south of Guadalajara. The DEA soon got a copy of an audiotape of the torture session that lasted for nine hours and ended with two deaths.
Those who've heard the tape say it is unbearable to listen to. The recordings were made at an estate in Guadalajara, the prosecutors said. They said the Mexican police seized the tapes at a defendant's home in Puerta Vallarta. He was kept alive by
Dr. Humberto Alvarez Machain The DEA believes that respondent, a medical doctor, participated in the murder by prolonging agent Camarena's life so that others could further torture and interrogate him..........As DEA later reconstructed the events, Camanera and his pilot Alfredo Zavala Avelares who also had been captured were driven to a remote ranch owned by
Ruban Zuno Arce. Over the next thirty hours both men were subjected to savage beatings as the drug lords attempted to learn how much the DEA agent knew about their enterprise. Camarena was given repeated injections of amphetamines to keep him conscious throughout the session. The interrogation and torture were tape recorded by the gang and their associates in the DFS.On the tapes, Mr. Camarena's interrogators focus on the identity of the drug agency's informers in Mexico. Mr. Camarena named two informers and told where they lived. He also gave directions to the home of a fellow agent in Mexico.Mr. Camarena is heard groaning and crying out in pain throughout the recordings, which run nearly two hours.''Don't hit me anymore,'' the agent is heard saying several times. 'No One Will Hit You'''No,'' the interrogator replies calmly. ''No one will hit you.''But later in the tape Mr. Camarena is heard moaning in pain.''Don't hurt my family, please,'' Mr. Camarena is heard saying in a quiet voice.''No one is going to hurt your family,'' the interrogator replies. ''Forget about that. They are not to blame for anything.''''You just keep on remembering, that is all,'' the interrogator goes on. ''I am not going to hit you or anything. O.K.?'' 'I Don't Know Any'Much of the interrogation dealt with questions about how much Mr. Camarena knew about Mr. Caro's Mexican drug empire. Mr. Camarena said he knew little, not even where Mr. Caro lived.''Give me people that go around with Caro,'' the interrogator asks at one point.Mr. Camarena replies: ''I don't know any, commander. If I knew I would tell you, sir. I tell you that I am here with fear.''Drug lords used a Mexican physician to bring Camarena back, time after time, during the cruel torture regime.Eventually, in response to U.S. pressure, a Mexican court issued an order for Caro Quintero's arrest. Nevertheless, a few days later,Caro Quintero and a half-dozen of his pistoleros, all armed and carrying official papers identifying them (falsely) as Mexican police, appeared quite openly at the Guadalajara airport to board the drug king's private plane. While sixty state and federal cops looked on, Caro Quintero consulted briefly with
First Comandante Jorge Armando Pavon Reyes, head of the police detail, handed him a check for sixty million pesos (then worth about U.S. $265,000), and flew off to Costa Rica. On the way, Caro Quintero stopped to pick up his teenage paramour, Sara Cristina Cosio Martinez.The DEA picked up the trail through her telephone calls to her parents. In April 1985, Costa Rican police arrested them, and they were flown to jail in Mexico. Sara Cristina, as a minor, was returned to her parents, insisting that she had been kidnapped. Shortly thereafter, another suspect in the Camarena murder,
Ernesto Fonseca Carrillo aka DON NETO, sixty, a relative of Caro Quintero and his mentor in the drug business, was arrested in Puerto Vallarta with 23 followers. Fourteen of these turned out to be policemen on his payroll. Fonseca Carrillo and Caro Quintero between them employed more than one hundred cops or ex-cops, according to the DEA.Ernesto Fonseca Carrillo is the uncle of
AMADO CARILLO FUENTES aka The Lord of the Skies, He was widely seen as a mentor to his nephew, one of Mexico's most important drug traffickers before he died during surgery to change his appearance in 1997According to Mexican officials, Fonseca told them last week that he had seen Camarena and Caro Quintero at the ranch the day after the kidnapings. Fonseca said that he and Caro Quintero were angry with the agent over a police and army raid on a plantation in Chihuahua, owned by the two drug dealers, in which 8,000 tons of marijuana were burned. Fonseca added that the intention had been to question Camarena and offer him a bribe. He also claimed that he was too drunk to talk to Camarena until the next day, when Caro Quintero allegedly told him, "Well, see if you can still reach him, because he is no longer speaking." The agent, Fonseca explained, had been brutally beaten, but was still alive. "Now you have done it!" Fonseca said he screamed. He claimed that he slapped Caro Quintero and called him a pig.In all, 22 people were indicted in connection with the deaths of Mr. Camarena; his pilot, Alfredo Zavala Avelar, and two tourists mistaken for United States law-enforcement agents.other participants apprehended and sentenced.................Ruben Zuno Arce,Federal prosecutors had portrayed Mr. Zuno, the brother-in-law of
former President Luis Echeverria Alvarez, as the intermediary between narcotics traffickers working out of Guadalajara, Mexico, and corrupt Mexican officials with high positions in law enforcement and the military.Mr. Zuno played a critical role in a marijuana and cocaine ring working out of Guadalajara from 1982 to 1985.Witnesses said Mr. Zuno had provided Mexican federal police with credentials for members of the drug ring and on two occasions received suitcases full of American money from a leader of the organization. They also testified that he participated in meetings where Mr. Camarena's abduction was planned.''Zuno agreed that the agent should be picked up,'' Mr. Medrano told jurors.According to other testimony, Mr. Zuno attended a party for
Mr. Rafael Caro Quintero, a leader of the drug ring, who was smoking a cocaine-base cigarette while making a horse dance to Latin music.''Caro came down off the dancing horse and gave Zuno a big abrazo, a hug,'' the prosecutor told jurors to show the close ties between Mr. Zuno and the drug ring. ..........
MIGUEL ALDANA IBARRA, former commander of Operation Pacifico, the Federales' antidrug unit and his cousin
Manuel Ibarra Herrera, ex-director of the Federal Judicial Police. Ibarra and Aldana were stars of
President Miguel de la Madrid's "permanent campaign" against drugs. But DEA agents believe that they, along with other top law-enforcement, intelligence and military officials, orchestrated the Camarena kidnaping because they feared that the DEA was about to expose their involvement in trafficking. Entries in Camarena's work diary show that at the time of his death he was following leads linking Aldana to the cartel.U.S. investigators say they now have witnesses who can testify that in October 1984 Aldana and Ibarra, his boss, met with Caro Quintero and other Guadalajara drug chieftains and plotted to kidnap Camarena. Aldana, who currently heads Mexico City's bar association, denied the charges last week.While the indictments of Aldana and Ibarra shocked many Mexicans, U.S. officials suspect the plot may have involved even more powerful Mexican officials.
*Note. Ernesto Don Neto Carrillo Fonseca was apprehended at Candelario Ramos, the chief of police of Ameca, Jalisco.
Mansion in puerta Vallarta.
Pic of Comandante Candelario Ramos
These are just some of the core players involved in the kiki Camanera killing.
Notes suggest that the Guadalajara Cartel was split down the middle, and that the MAGF factions were the ones that green lit the El.Cochiloco hit and his family's hit as well. This is the main reason Don Neto and rafa were willing to spread out the group setting and form.their own long standing cartels with presence til this day. It's alleged that MAGF was the one to rat our Dona Netos hiding place. It's also alleged that Amado Carrillo Fuentes sent the Comandante Guillermo the same Comandante that killed Pablo Acosta to Dispatch Miguel Angel Gallardo Felix.
Some Additional Players ......
Juan Gilberto Hernandez-Parra....
Rene Verdugo Urquidez..
Jesus Felix Gutierrez...
.. Juan Jose Bernabe-Ramirez
Juan Jose Bernabe Ramirez (Caro Quintero Henchman)
A Drug Enforcement Administration agent identified a defendant in the Enrique Camarena murder case Thursday as one of a group of armed men who helped a Mexican drug lord escape from the Guadalajara airport two days after Camarena was kidnaped in February, 1985.
Agent Salvador Leyva, gesturing toward defendant Juan Jose Bernabe Ramirez in a federal courtroom in Los Angeles, said Bernabe was among a number of heavily armed bodyguards who surrounded a Lear jet at the airport and kept authorities at bay until Rafael Caro Quintero was able to board the plane and take off.
.... be pointed an AK-47 assault rifle at him and Mexican police officers, who had gone to the airport on a tip.
Attached to the rifle was a drum containing 100 rounds of ammunition, the agent said. "I never saw anything like that in my life," Leyva said.
Bernabe is one of four men who are on trial in U.S. District court here for involvement in the kidnaping and murder of Camarena, a DEA agent whose slaying touched off the largest manhunt in the history of the agency.
Leyva said Mexican police and DEA agents stood facing each other with guns drawn but that the authorities were hopelessly outgunned by Caro's bodyguards. The agent noted, for example, that he was armed only with a .38-caliber revolver.
Leyva said it seemed that the tense standoff lasted "an eternity," although the incident actually took about 20 minutes.
Ultimately, he said, Armando Pavon Reyes, a first commander with the Mexican Federal Judicial Police, allowed Caro to leave after he telephoned one of his superiors.
After the phone conversation, Leyva said, Pavon returned to where Caro was standing and the two men chatted briefly and put their arms around one another. "They seemed like old friends all of a sudden," he recalled with disgust.
Caro boarded the plane with a woman and his bodyguards and as it taxied away, Caro leaned out the door, defiantly held up a machine gun and ridiculed the Mexico police and DEA agents by "toasting" them with a glass of champagne and shouting out, "Next time bring better weapons, my children!"
Pavon told Leyva and others that the man he had allowed to leave was Rogelio Munoz Rios, a commander with the Mexican Federal Judicial Police, which was a lie, as Leyva discovered the next day when shown a photograph of Caro at the DEA office in Guadalajara.
Caro was later captured in Costa Rica and is serving a long jail sentence in Mexico for his role in the Camarena murder. Camarena was tortured at a Guadalajara house owned by Caro.
DEA officials have said they learned later that Caro promised Pavon 60 million pesos--about $270,000--to let him leave the airport. Pavon, who has been indicted in the Los Angeles case, was charged with corruption in Mexico and spent 18 months in prison, according to the DEA.
.. Leyva's testimony about Bernabe was particularly significant because Bernabe is accused of aiding and abetting Camarena's killers after he was kidnaped on Feb. 7, 1985.
Leyva was cross-examined by defense lawyers on his identification of Bernabe, a man he said he had seen only once in his life before Thursday. Initially, Leyva said that Caro had eight bodyguards with him at the airport, but later acknowledged that when he first wrote about the incident he said that there were five bodyguards.
He said that Bernabe was about 20 feet away from him during the confrontation. Leyva said he recalled that Bernabe had long, dark hair and was not wearing glasses, as he does now.
Leyva had to step down from the witness stand and approach Bernabe to identify him.
Bernabe's lawyer, Michael Meza, suggested on cross-examination that Leyva only had been able to identify the defendant because the DEA agent had been shown photographs of him recently.
But Leyva maintained that he recalled vividly what Bernabe looked like: "I knew it was him because I dreamed about this man for a while."
Good read. Thank you!
Jesus Felix Gutierrez (Associate of Caro Quintero)
.. The owner of an East Los Angeles seafood company which allegedly served as a front for an international cocaine ring was accused Monday of helping one of the reported murderers of U.S. drug agent Enrique Camarena escape from Mexico in 1985.
Jesus Felix-Gutierrez, 38, a Mexican citizen who allegedly amassed a fortune in a decade of drug-dealing in Los Angeles, reportedly sheltered Mexican drug boss Rafael Caro Quintero on a ranch in Costa Rica after the 1985 kidnap-murder of Camarena in Guadalajara.
. The charges were made against Felix-Gutierrez in a 53-page affidavit filed by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration in Los Angeles federal court as he was being arraigned on a criminal complaint of conspiring to distribute cocaine and marijuana.
Felix-Gutierrez, wanted by federal agents for months in the Camarena case, was arrested Christmas Eve after slipping back into the Los Angeles area from Mexico for a holiday visit with relatives and friends.
Because of the speed required in catching him before he could leave the country, he was charged initially with only one count of conspiracy to sell drugs, but Assistant U.S. Atty. Jimmie Gurule said Monday that an investigation into his ties to the Camarena case is continuing.
Arraigned with Felix-Gutierrez on drug conspiracy charges in Los Angeles was his nephew, Carlos Felix-Gutierrez, 26, of El Monte. U.S. Magistrate James E. Penne set a hearing for Wednesday on a government motion to deny bail to both men.
Also charged in the conspiracy are two alleged associates--Arturo de la Torre and Jaime Castaneda. De la Torre was arrested in Honolulu on Christmas and will be tried in Los Angeles, officials said. Castaneda is a fugitive.
The torture-murder of Camarena in February, 1985, has led to strained relations between Mexico and the United States, which accused Mexican police of deliberately stalling their investigation to help drug dealers escape.
The DEA has charged that Quintero, described as one of the "overlords" of the Mexican drug world, was one of Camarena's killers. Quintero was captured at Felix-Gutierrez's ranch in Costa Rica in April, 1985, and is now in jail in Mexico in the Camarena murder.
The affidavit filed by DEA Agent Douglas W. Kuehl on Felix-Gutierrez portrayed him as an international drug dealer who had used his seafood distributorship, Ocean Gold Seafood Inc. at 5444 E. Olympic Blvd., as one of several Los Angeles business fronts for drug smuggling and dealing.
While his nephew, Carlos Felix-Gutierrez, is listed as the president of the firm, Jesus Felix-Gutierrez was identified by an unnamed DEA informant as the real owner. He was also identified as past owner of R&G Sales, a defunct Mexican products distributorship, and RC Auto Wrecking Co., a Los Angeles junkyard.
According to the affidavit, Jesus Felix-Gutierrez purchased four residences in Costa Rica for $1.7 million in the early 1980s, including his ranch, La Quinta, where Quintero was captured. He also reportedly tried to purchase the Playboy Club in San Jose, Costa Rica, in 1983 for $3.8 million.
.. The DEA traced his drug activities in the Los Angeles area to a 1976 arrest in Montebello for possession of heroin and amphetamines, when he was given a voluntary deportation to Mexico in lieu of prosecution. According to the affidavit, Jesus Felix-Gutierrez returned frequently, at times residing with his wife in West Covina.
Jesus Felix-Gutierrez was arrested by a 45-agent federal task force near El Monte following a tip that he would try to return to Los Angeles for Christmas. The task force is continuing the Camarena investigation and is also probing the killing of Alfredo Zavala Avelar, a Mexican pilot who occasionally flew missions for the DEA.
(THIS IS A LOOK INTO THE ABDUCTION OF DR. HUMBERTO ALVAREZ MACHAIN)
UNITED STATES v. CARO-QUINTERO
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE CENTRAL DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, Plaintiff, v. RAFAEL CARO-QUINTERO, aka "Rafael", aka "El Grenas", aka "Rafa", ERNESTO FONSECA-CARRILLO, aka "Don Neto", JUAN RAMON MATTA-BALLESTEROS, aka "El Negro", MIGUEL ANGEL FELIX-GALLARDO, MANUEL IBARRA-HERRERA, MIGUEL ALDANA-IBARRA, RUBEN ZUNO-ARCE, JAVIER BARBA-HERNANDEZ, ARMANDO PAVON-REYES, JUAN GILBERTO HERNANDEZ-PARRA, SERGIO ESPINO-VERDIN, HUMBERTO ALVAREZ-MACHAIN, JUAN JOSE BERNABE-RAMIREZ, JAVIER VASQUEZ-VELASCO, ANTONIO VASQUEZ-VELASCO, ANTONIO VASQUEZ-OCHOA, EZEQUIEL GODINEZ-CERVANTES, INES CALDERON-QUINTERO, aka "Rolando Cervantes", ALBINO BAZAN-PADILLA, Defendents.
CAUTION; YOU HAVE TO READ NOT ONLY THE PRIMARY ARTICLE, BUT ALL OF THE COMMENTS. THAT IS HOW DARNELL KEPT ADDING INFO TO THE ORIGINAL STORY.
I am glad to see Darnell is still with us. I had been working on his story for the last couple of days to see what new info he had that Kid did not cover in his story at http://borderland-beat-forum.924382.n3.nabble.com/Release-of-DEA-Agent-Kiki-Camarena-s-Murderer-Is-Game-Changer-for-CIA-tp4056446.html
Both of them had so much good info, it was difficult to compare them. So I had decided to just re-post Darnell's piece this morning, but Darnell beat me to it. I don't know what crystal ball Darnell was using, but what seemed like a good historical piece 2 months ago when he posted it has turned out to be a major story very relevant today.
I highly recommend it.
Words are powerful weapons, be careful how you use them.
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