This paper focuses on the new breed of criminal enterprises, Drug Trafficking Organizations (DTOs), that exist in Mexico today and reach deep into the United States, and presents law enforcement's response to their operations.
This paper focuses on the new breed of criminal enterprises, Drug Trafficking Organizations (DTOs), that exist in Mexico today and reach deep into the United States. Two of the major DTOs are Los Zetas and La Familia Michoacana. The Zetas were exposed originally by a leader of the Gulf DTO, Cardenas Guillen. Guillen chose as his top recruit, Lieutenant Arturo Guzman Decena who brought with him 30 deserters from the Mexican Military's elite Groupo Aeromovil de Fuerzas Especiales (GAFES). These individuals were hired for the sole purpose of killing off Guillen's other DTO rivals in Mexico. Presently, these two former partners have splintered and now exist as enemies vying for control of drug territory. The La Familia is a fanatical faith-based DTO that emerged in 2006 in Uruapan, Mexico, to become one of the largest methamphetamine distributors and producer in the United States. In addition to introducing these two major DTOs, this paper will also cover tactics and operations used by law enforcement that have proven to be effective in dealing with these organizations, such as Project Coronado (October 2009).
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