Authorities in Nuevo Leon arrested the acting leader of an independent cartel linked to a spike in murders amid a turf war with Los Zetas. The arrest comes weeks after Breitbart Texas revealed the existence of the independent outfit “Los Billys” and their leaders.
The arrest took place over the weekend in downtown Monterrey when authorities pulled over 37-year-old Jose Antonio “Tony Montana or Scarface” Chavarin Mendoza after a complaint of a suspicious individual in a luxury sedan with license plates RTV-393-A. Authorities found drugs and a large amount of U.S. cash in the vehicle, U.S. law enforcement sources working in Mexico told Breitbart Texas.
Detectives with Nuevo Leon’s State Investigations Agency were able to identify Chavarin Mendoza and filed drug distribution charges as they carry out an investigation with intelligence linking the suspect to the top leadership structure of Los Billys.
Los Billys began as a street gang that distributed drugs and grew into an organization capable of challenging the Cartel Del Noreste faction of Los Zetas for partial control of Monterrey. Los Billys established cells of enforcers who target rival distributors and delinquent consumers, contributing to a sharp rise in murders.
U.S. law enforcement sources say that Chavarin Mendoza assumed operational control of Los Billys in recent months after the April arrest of Saul “El Tumbado” Salinas Gonzalez. With right-hand man Jose Luis “El Choco” Castro Rodriguez, Tony Montana continued the turf war. After bonding out on a minor charge, Salinas Gonzalez went underground and keeps a lower profile.
Ildefonso Ortiz is an award-winning journalist with Breitbart Texas. He co-founded Breitbart Texas’ 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 Texas. He co-founded Breitbart Texas’ Cartel Chronicles project with Ildefonso Ortiz and senior Breitbart management. Follow him on Twitter and Facebook. He can be contacted at email@example.com.
Tony Aranda from Breitbart Texas’ Cartel Chronicles project contributed to this report