MONTERREY, Nuevo Leon – A territorial expansion by the Cartel Del Noreste (CDN) faction of Los Zetas throughout the border state of Nuevo Leon is now being challenged by two small independent drug gangs. The gangs are fighting to hold on to their territories in key municipalities in the Monterrey Metropolitan area. Breitbart News obtained exclusive access to police and military intelligence identifying the leaders of those gangs and their areas of influence.
In recent months, Los Zetas-CDN carried out a rapid expansion effort throughout Monterrey that led to hundreds of murders as the cartel seeks to have exclusive control over the distribution of drugs in the region. Breitbart News obtained exclusive access to police files that document the cartel’s efforts in reaching out to local street suppliers, drug couriers, taxi drivers, and even Uber drivers who also move drugs. The cartel demanded they only use their product. Those who refuse are routinely killed in sting-like operations where CDN hitmen order drugs from rival salesmen to kidnap them, torture them for information, and then kill them.
The push for expansion has been met with resistance by two independent drug distribution gangs that are openly challenging Los Zetas-CDN in an attempt to hold on to their operations. One of the gangs is allegedly led by Jonathan Enrique “El Totoy: Gonzalez Rivera, who despite his young age has managed to recruit numerous former Zeta members. He is reported to be actively targeting CDN members in the downtown area of Monterrey. Breitbart News recently reported on El Totoy’s operation after a team of his hitmen had been arrested during the assassination of a rival drug dealer.
Court documents obtained by Breitbart News revealed that Gonzalez Rivera began his criminal career in the coastal city of Puerto Vallarta, Jalisco, before moving to Nuevo Leon where he spent time inside the Apodaca and Topo Chico prisons before being released and becoming a drug dealer without a cartel.
The second drug gang currently operates in the municipality of Juarez under the leadership of Jose Edgar “El Choco” Lara Martinez, a former lieutenant with Mexico’s Gulf Cartel. Lara Martinez is now reported to be operating in an independent fashion. The violence between El Choco’s crew and the CDN led to a recent spike in murders in the industrial areas of Monterrey.
Police arrested Lara Martinez in 2015 during a shootout with police. He was ultimately sent to prison for his role in ordering two murders. Even though he was expected to serve over 20 years in prison, El Choco’s attorneys were able to get his release early leading to his reappearance in Monterrey. Several of his lookouts and his operators have recently been killed by CDN assassins.
As Breitbart News has reported, Los Zetas-CDN is currently led by Hector Raul “El Tory” Luna Luna, the narco-terrorist behind the 2008 grenade attack on the U.S. Consulate in Monterrey. Under El Tory’s orders, CDN assassins have been carrying out numerous murders and executions throughout the border states of Nuevo Leon, Tamaulipas, and Coahuila.
Ildefonso Ortiz is an award-winning journalist with Breitbart Border / Cartel Chronicles. He co-founded the Cartel Chronicles project with Brandon Darby and senior Breitbart management. You can follow him on Twitter and on Facebook. He can be contacted at Iortiz@breitbart.com.
Brandon Darby is the managing director and editor-in-chief of Breitbart Border / Cartel Chronicles. He co-founded the Cartel Chronicles project with Ildefonso Ortiz and senior Breitbart management. Follow him on Twitter and Facebook. He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Tony Aranda from the Cartel Chronicles project contributed to this report.