Mexican authorities announced the seizure of 50 tons of methamphetamine during a drug lab raid conducted on August 16 by the Mexican Navy in the northern state of Sinaloa.
The raid began at approximately 8 a.m. in the municipality of Alcoyonqui. The community is located in the mountain region approximately 30 kilometers (18 miles) from the state capital of Culiacan, as reported in local media.
Officials made the discovery after intelligence was developed that led Navy personnel to the rural mountain community in search of a suspected drug lab. Once in the area, investigators developed operational intelligence by analyzing updated satellite maps of the area and using tracking techniques of foot and vehicle traffic leading to drug lab complex which was hidden in an area of heavy vegetation, according to a Navy Commander at the scene. After investigators located the first lab, further investigation led to the discovery of two additional complexes including underground storage facilities.
The Mexican Navy Commander also indicated that during the search for the drug lab, investigators relied on following the distinct odor given off by the active meth lab which can be detected at a distance of up to 400 meters (approximately ¼ mile).
Approximately seven tons of finished product of methamphetamine, or “crystal” or “cristal” as it’s known in Mexico, was located in the first complex. Officials found an additional 40 tons of methamphetamine in solid or liquid form in large drums and sacks along with precursor chemicals at the additional sites.
According to Navy command personnel at the scene, the drug lab was determined to belong to the Sinaloa Cartel also known as El Cartel del Pacifico. After documenting, photographing, and weighing the illicit product, it was destroyed at the scene according to government officials. Even though the complex was equipped with several huts to house up to 30 people, no arrests have been made related to the seizure.
According to Breitbart Texas law enforcement sources, the Sinaloa Cartel has stepped up the production of methamphetamine and opioid-based products to offset any cash flow losses attributed to the legalization of marijuana in the United States.
Much of the record-breaking violence being experienced in Mexico has been attributed to the turf wars for the street level drug market for methamphetamine or “cristal.” Breitbart Texas has reported extensively on the record-breaking violence in Mexico to include the border cities of Ciudad Juarez and Tijuana.
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 firstname.lastname@example.org