Mexican Cop-Turned-Chief Sinaloa Cartel Hitman Arrested in Tijuana


A former municipal police officer from Tijuana who later became the chief Sinaloa Cartel hitman in the region was captured in a joint operation this week.

Authorities announced the capture of former municipal police officer Marco Tulio Carrillo Grande aka “El Marlon,” who is the alleged chief Sinaloa Cartel “sicario” or hitman in Tijuana and nearby Rosarito. El Marlon allegedly oversaw a team of killers at the disposal of the Sinaloa Cartel and aligned criminal gangs operating in the area, according to Breitbart News law enforcement sources.

El Marlon was considered a top priority target Grupo de Coordinación of Baja California, according to local media reports. He was reportedly involved in a January 2016 attack at the Palenque Póker cockfighting arena in Ensenada that left four dead and at least 19 wounded. The dead included an 11 and 16-year-old among the 400 spectators in attendance. According to Breitbart law enforcement sources and local media accounts, El Marlon was part of a team of six gunmen who stormed the venue and attacked the event host for control of drug activity in the area.

El Marlon was a police officer in Tijuana from 1995 to 2008, until he was removed from the force along with 34 others after he was identified in an internal investigation as being involved in organized crime. Shortly after being removed, he was suspected of being involved in several homicides and kidnappings in Baja California, according to the state attorney general’s office. He was also considered a key Sinaloa Cartel operative responsible for the smuggling and distribution of methamphetamine and heroin into the United States. He was previously arrested numerous times. At the time of this most recent capture, he was found to be in possession of two firearms and nearly a kilo of methamphetamine, according to local reports. Carrillo Grande was turned over to the federal attorney general’s office for determination of criminal charges.

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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