Authorities Fear Cartel Violence Will Spread in El Paso-Juárez Metropolitan Border Area

Juarez El Paso
AP Photo

Four Los Aztecas assassins wanted for multiple attacks on Mexican police were captured on Saturday in Juárez, part of the greater El Paso-Juarez metropolitan area, after fleeing the state capital of Chihuahua from the armed wing of the Juárez Cartel, known as La Línea.

According to information provided by the Director of Public Security for the City of Juárez, the four Los Aztecas members admitted to carrying out multiple attacks on elements of the police on behalf of La Línea prior to a deadly split between the two organizations. The four admitted to arriving in Juarez on May 10 after fleeing the La Línea.

Breitbart Texas recently reported on the split between Los Aztecas and La Línea and the May 24 arrest of Bruno Angel Rangel, aka “El Bruno,” who has served in leadership for both groups.

El Bruno is suspected of participating in or ordering the killings of at least 21 Aztecas and the wounding of four others. The move from Los Aztecas to La Línea caused a split and led to a turf war over the valuable street sales market, according to local media reports. The war is blamed for the recent spike in cartel killings around Ciudad Juarez and the state capital of Chihuahua.

Breitbart Texas also recently reported on the capture of Carlos Arturo Quintana, “El 80,” the leader of La Línea. He is one of the FBI’s most wanted fugitives and a criminal leader believed responsible for much of the violence in the border state. According to the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), La Línea is currently involved in a bitter dispute for valuable territory in Chihuahua against the Sinaloa Cartel factions led by Rafael Caro-Quintero and Ismael “El Mayo” Zambada—both wanted by the FBI.

According to Breitbart Texas’ law enforcement sources, authorities fear that the split between two criminal organizations may cause an alarming spike in cartel killings not only around Juárez, but the violence may cross into El Paso if Los Aztecas flee into a safe haven in the United States. Los Aztecas are already active on both sides of the border.

According to the Director of Public Security for Juárez, the four Aztecas assassins were identified as Fernando A. L., “El Ferni,” 25; Rafael G, “El Rafa or El Galón,” 51; Marina E.M., 58; and Sergio Luvardo MR, “El Monclova,” 31.

The four admitted to being involved in attacks in Chihuahua against police elements on five separate dates in April. Two officers and one security guard were killed and several others wounded.

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


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