MCALLEN, Texas — A Texas man has been charged in an ongoing Mexican cartel effort to buy guns in the U.S. The man is charged with having personally purchased at least 38 weapons for the cartel.
Agents with the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco Firearms and Explosives recently arrested 31-year-old Carlos Alberto Zamudio on straw purchasing charges. Straw purchasing refers to the practice of U.S citizens with a clean background purchasing weapons for people who are not able to such as convicted felons, foreign nationals, and, along the Texas border, Mexican drug cartels.
This week, Zamudio went before U.S. Magistrate Judge Peter Ormsby who formally charged him and ordered he be held without bond.
The case against Zamudio began on September 11 when an ATF agent received information that the suspect had purchased at least 38 weapons (AK-47) from local gun shops, court records obtained by Breitbart Texas revealed. The weapons were all purchased in between November 2014 and September 2015.
ATF agents were able to learn that an AK-47 Zamudio purchased Pharr in July had been recovered by Mexican authorities in the border city of Reynosa. Currently the Gulf Cartel faction known as Los Metros runs the city of Reynosa and has taken part in a number of high profile gun battles throughout the region.
ATF agents met with Zamudio. During an interview, he admitted he had been buying AK-47’s and selling them for a profit, court records revealed. The man claimed that he lost his job in January. He turned to buying and selling of rifles as his source of income.
After the interview Zamudio gave agents his cell number. Agents were then able to match that number to the number on the form that he had filled out when buying the weapons.
Agents were able to confirm that Zamudio’s number was listed as a contact person in the cell phone of another man in jail on weapons charges. The two men had been on constant communication from January until May when the unidentified man was arrested.