Zeta Drug Cartel

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From Texas Standard.

When it comes to combating Mexican drug cartels, law enforcement agencies have aimed at the head, aiming to weakening them by eliminate the groups’ leadership. According to the Congressional Research Service, Capitol Hill’s nonpartisan think tank, 107 of Mexico’s 122 most violent criminals have been removed from cartels. The results? Violence has surged, with media outlets reporting that death tolls have hit 20 year highs. So how did this explosion of violence happen and what’s coming next?

Divya Darsi/KUT News

From Texas Standard:

The drug war between the Mexican government and drug cartels has been raging ever since then-President Felipe Calderon declared a crackdown on narcos in December 2006. Hundreds of thousands have died, and that’s not even counting the mass kidnappings, with innocent people disappearing without a trace.

Ariel Dulitzky has been looking into some of these disappearances. The University of Texas law professor was appointed in 2010 by the United Nations Human Rights Council to a working group investigating the increase in kidnappings. His new report looks into some of these disappearances.

Luis Antonio García Sepúlveda/Wikimedia Commons [CC BY-SA 4.0)

From Texas Standard:

You may not have known him, but many thousands have relied on his reports for decades, covering drug cartels and organized crime. Award-winning reporter Javier Valdez was gunned down in the middle of the day in Sinaloa, Mexico, becoming at least the sixth journalist killed in that country since March.

Some fear that the attacks on journalists could lead to a de facto information blackout.


From Texas Standard:

The names of some of Mexico’s most infamous drug lords are well-known: Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzmán Loera, Ismael “El Mayo” Zambada and Rafael Caro Quintero. Besides their profession and location, they have one other thing in common – they are all men. But those following the evolution of cartels in the country are noticing a demographic shift.

Andrew Weber for KUT News

Austin is no longer a “sleepy college town,” according to Police Chief Art Acevedo.

Austin Police and the U.S. Attorney's office say as Austin grows, so does the risk of drug trafficking. Today, they announced two big busts – one involving a year-and-a-half investigation into a cartel-connected cocaine ring and another that yielded over 20 pounds of methamphetamine.