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Viewing cable 09MONTERREY415, KILLING OF POLICE CHIEF LATEST IN CARTEL VIOLENCE,

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Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
09MONTERREY415 2009-11-06 22:10 2011-02-10 12:12 CONFIDENTIAL Consulate Monterrey
Appears in these articles:
http://www.jornada.unam.mx/2011/02/10/index.php?section=politica&article=006n1pol
VZCZCXRO2073
PP RUEHCD RUEHGD RUEHHO RUEHNG RUEHNL RUEHRD RUEHRS RUEHTM
DE RUEHMC #0415/01 3102220
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
P 062220Z NOV 09
FM AMCONSUL MONTERREY
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 4069
INFO RUEHME/AMEMBASSY MEXICO PRIORITY 5149
RUEHXC/ALL US CONSULATES IN MEXICO COLLECTIVE
RUEABND/DEA HQS WASHDC
RHMFISS/DEPT OF JUSTICE WASHINGTON DC
RUEFHLC/DEPT OF HOMELAND SECURITY WASHINGTON DC
RHMFISS/FBI WASHINGTON DC
RHMFISS/HQ USNORTHCOM
RUEHMC/AMCONSUL MONTERREY 9687
233709
2009-11-06 22:20:00
09MONTERREY415
Consulate Monterrey
CONFIDENTIAL
09MONTERREY386|09MONTERREY411
VZCZCXRO2073
PP RUEHCD RUEHGD RUEHHO RUEHNG RUEHNL RUEHRD RUEHRS RUEHTM
DE RUEHMC #0415/01 3102220
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
P 062220Z NOV 09
FM AMCONSUL MONTERREY
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 4069
INFO RUEHME/AMEMBASSY MEXICO PRIORITY 5149
RUEHXC/ALL US CONSULATES IN MEXICO COLLECTIVE
RUEABND/DEA HQS WASHDC
RHMFISS/DEPT OF JUSTICE WASHINGTON DC
RUEFHLC/DEPT OF HOMELAND SECURITY WASHINGTON DC
RHMFISS/FBI WASHINGTON DC
RHMFISS/HQ USNORTHCOM
RUEHMC/AMCONSUL MONTERREY 9687

C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 02 MONTERREY 000415 
 
SIPDIS 
 
DS FOR IP /ITA AND IP/WHA 
 
E.O. 12958: DECL:  11/6/2019 
TAGS: KCRM PINS SNAR ASEC PGOV PTER SOCI MX
SUBJECT: KILLING OF POLICE CHIEF LATEST IN CARTEL VIOLENCE, 
INTIMIDATION AGAINST PUBLIC OFFICIALS 
 
REF: A. MONTERREY 411 
     B. MONTERREY 386 
 
MONTERREY 00000415  001.2 OF 002 
 
 
CLASSIFIED BY: Bruce Williamson, Consul General. 
REASON: 1.4 (b), (d) 
1.    (C) Summary:  On November 4, gunmen ambushed and killed 
the police chief of the Monterrey suburb of Garcia.  Unconfirmed 
DEA sources identified at least one of the attackers as a member 
of Los Zetas.  This is the latest in the drug cartels' endemic 
intimidation and violence campaign against public officials that 
includes mayors of Monterrey's suburbs and police officials (in 
particular, retired military officers) in Nuevo Leon and 
Coahuila.  Civil authorities, burdened by corruption-riddled 
police forces, are increasingly turning to military officers to 
serve as municipal secretaries of public security.  Now some of 
the military officers being detailed to such posts are ending up 
dead.  End Summary. 
 
Cartel Gunmen Kill Municipal Secretary of Public Security 
--------------------------------------------- ------------ 
 
2.   (SBU) In the latest brazen attack on civil authorities, on 
the evening of November 4, a group of assailants killed the new 
Garcia city Municipal Secretary of Public Security, retired 
Brigadier General Juan Arturo Esparza Garcia, and his four 
bodyguards, two of whom were soldiers, in a fusillade of over 
200 bullets.  Esparza, who had been on the job only four days, 
was traveling in a convoy on the way to meet with new Garcia 
mayor Jaime Rodriguez.  His appointment came months after 
several Garcia police officers were arrested for corruption. 
 
Mayor Threatened 
---------------- 
 
3.  (SBU) Shortly before Esparza's assassination, Mayor 
Rodriguez reported that a group of over 30 gunmen in around ten 
vehicles arrived at his house and threatened him and Esparza. 
Esparza was then killed soon thereafter around 15 blocks from 
the Mayor's home.  Esparza had 40 years of military service and 
had served on the protective detail of four Mexican presidents, 
including a stint as former President Vicente Fox's chief of 
security. 
 
Military, State Take Control 
---------------------------- 
 
4.  (SBU) Over 200 soldiers responded after the killings and 
conducted a sweep of the area with state police.  Media reports 
indicated that a number of Zeta cadres live in the town of 
Garcia (pop. 50,000) located northwest of Monterrey in Nuevo 
Leon.  Shortly after the murders, Governor Rodrigo Medina 
announced that military and state police forces assume control 
of the city.  Mayor Rodriguez told the press that he believed 
the city's police force had been infiltrated by the drug 
cartels, finding it unusual that none of the city's police had 
noticed 10 vehicles full of gunmen on city streets prior to the 
shooting.  State authorities detained Garcia's 70 police 
officers for questioning in connection with Esparza's shooting. 
 
Zeta Member Possible Suspect 
---------------------------- 
 
5.  (C) DEA sources within the military indicated that Eduardo 
Almanza Morales, a Zeta member whose brother, Otavio Almanza 
Morales, allegedly orchestrated the February 2009 killing of 
Cancun's Municipal Secretary of Public Security retired General 
Mauro Enrique Tello Quinones, was behind Esparza's slaying. 
(Note:  Post has not been able to obtain official confirmation 
of this information.  End note.) 
 
Suspects Arrested 
----------------- 
 
6.  (SBU) On November 5, authorities arrested five police 
officers and five other suspects in connection with the killing 
of Esparza and his bodyguards.  Nuevo Leon state Attorney 
General Alejandro Garza y Garza told the media that one of the 
suspects, Norberto Jaime Trevino, had been in a dispute with 
city authorities over his operation of an illegal quarrying 
company.  Trevino had enlisted the help of a local hotel owner, 
Victor Manuel Gomez, with drug cartel ties to intimidate Garcia 
municipal officials. 
 
Pattern of Cartel Intimidation, Threats, Killings 
--------------------------------------------- ---- 
 
7.  (C) Esparza's assassination is just the latest in a series 
 
MONTERREY 00000415  002.2 OF 002 
 
 
of overt drug cartel attempts to cow local authorities.  On 
October 30, just hours after taking office, the Municipal 
Secretary of Public Security in the Monterrey suburb of Escobedo 
resigned his position, citing threats he had received from 
organized crime.  Four outgoing mayors of Monterrey suburbs 
recently described threats they had received from 
narcotraffickers to the CG.  One even described brazen threats 
made in front of print and broadcast media (ref A).  In another 
bold attack on civil authority, around 25 gunmen in six vehicles 
fired on Zacatecas Governor Amalia Garcia's caravan on a major 
thoroughfare in September (fortunately she had not yet joined 
the motorcade). 
 
Current and Former Military Personnel Targeted 
--------------------------------------------- - 
 
8.  (SBU) Military personnel and former military officers 
heading police forces appear to be targeted by the cartels.  In 
August, a retired general serving as police chief in Monclova, 
Coahuila escaped an assassination attempt that left three of his 
bodyguards dead.  Piedras Negras police chief, army Colonel 
Arturo Navarro was shot to death in April.  Last October, 11 
soldiers were tortured and killed outside Monterrey on the 
orders of a Gulf Cartel leader in retaliation for military 
action against cartel members. 
 
Comment 
------- 
 
9.  (C) Many cities, including Monterrey and its suburbs, have 
been increasingly beset by cartel related violence (ref B) over 
the past year.  The growing reliance by municipal and state 
leaders on the military to secure areas burdened by corrupt 
police forces will likely increase conflict as cartels face off 
against the army to regain control of their territories. 
 
10.  (C) With the change of municipal administrations, the City 
of Monterrey's list of candidates for police chiefs has yet to 
be completely vetted, joining other municipalities that are 
waiting for security vetting to be completed in order to install 
security heads.  Looming drug cartel threats have caused 
otherwise qualified candidates for these positions to demur from 
accepting the positions, or, as in the case of the Escobedo 
chief, to resign (para 7).  In one instance, Post is aware of 
one highly-regarded candidate for the San Nicolas Municipal 
Secretary of Public Security position, who, if he accepts the 
job, could conceivably face the same fate as Esparza.  The 
recent violence will only serve to make finding qualified and 
honest police chiefs harder in the future. 
WILLIAMSONB