Mexican Army Seizes 2 Tons of Drugs in Tourist Beach Hub

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Mexican Army

A vehicle inspection of two pickup trucks by the Mexican Army security checkpoint on Wednesday led to the discovery of 1.5 tons (3,064 pounds or 1,390 KG) of hard drugs consisting of fentanyl, heroin, cocaine, and methamphetamine in Ojos Negros, located in the municipality of Ensenada.

The security checkpoint was set up on Federal Highway number 3—Ojos Negros-Ensenada which is located on the eastern end of the municipality, according to local media reports. During an inspection of one of the two trucks traveling together, Army personnel located a large modified container made to look as if it was carrying gasoline. An inspection revealed 22 backpacks filled with plastic containers of drugs with the recorded weight of approximately 880 kilograms or 1,940 pounds.

The second truck contained 17 giant bags with 1,304 plastic containers of various hard drugs with a total weight of 510 kilograms. The total combined weight of all the drugs seized was recorded at 3,064 pounds or 1,390 kilograms. The Mexican Army seized both trucks and arrested three occupants.

The beach resort town of Ensenada is a key smuggling location for Mexican cartels, primarily because of its port and access to major highways like Mexican Federal Highway 1 and its close proximity to the U.S. border, 70 miles away. The primary criminal groups operating in the area are Cártel Jalisco Nueva Generación (CJNG) and remnants of the Cártel Arellano Félix who are aligned against warring factions of the Sinaloa Cartel’s “Los Aquiles” and “Los Uriarte.”

In January of 2018, Breitbart Texas reported  a massive seizure by the federal police after a traffic stop in Ensenada produced 45.5 kilograms of fentanyl, 914 pounds of crystal meth, 87 pounds of cocaine, and 18 pounds of heroin. The load was believed headed to the U.S. border and it was determined that the fentanyl was enough volume to kill millions.

Other cartel-related drug smuggling seizures in Ensenada reported by Breitbart Texas include a seizure of 458 pounds of cocaine in the port of Ensenada from the Sealand Philadelphia arriving from Puerto Callao, Peru.

With the increased smuggling activities in Ensenada, the once peaceful Mexican beach hub is experiencing elevated levels of cartel killings as the murder count for 2018 topped 100 during the first four months of the year. Most recently, on June 1, a state police commander of an intelligence unit identified as Francisco Ibarra González was murdered by two gunmen as he was leaving his house for work. A 63-year-old female neighbor was also wounded during the attack. The gunmen were able to flee from the area in an unknown vehicle.

Robert Arce is a retired Phoenix Police detective with extensive experience working Mexican organized crime and street gangs. Arce has worked in the Balkans, Iraq, Haiti, and recently completed a three-year assignment in Monterrey, Mexico, working out of the Consulate for the United States Department of State, International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Program, where he was the Regional Program Manager for Northeast Mexico (Coahuila, Tamaulipas, Nuevo Leon, Durango, San Luis Potosi, Zacatecas.) You can follow him on Twitter. He can be reached at robertrarce@gmail.com

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