Mario armando ramirez trevino alias "el pelon" or "X-20" was captured in the town of rio bravo in the state of tamaulipas in the northeast of the country, the interior ministry announced over the weekend. On sunday, he was transferred to mexico city, where he was tried by the prosecutor’s office for organized crime.
It is already the second arrest of an important mexican drug lord within one month. In the middle of july, security forces had captured the leader of "los zetas", miguel angel trevino morales alias "Z-40.
The golf cartel is one of the oldest crime syndicates in mexico. The group was smuggling alcohol as early as the prohibition era in the 1920s, according to an analysis by the U.S. Congressional research service. The cartel, which is based in northeastern mexico, has been active in the drug trade for around 40 years, reported the news portal insight crime. Meanwhile, the group is also involved in the smuggling of refugees to the USA.
Ramirez trevino is said to be a former police officer who has changed sides. He was initially the leader of an armed arm of the golf cartel, "los rojos". After the arrest of its leader eduardo costilla in september 2012 and a series of internal fights, he rose to the top of the drug cartel, as the newspaper "milenio" reported.
Ramirez trevino is considered extremely dangerous. It is "just as or even more brutal" than the recently arrested zetas chief trevino morales, it was said in a report in the newspaper "el universal". The U.S. Anti-drug police DEA had offered five million dollars for information leading to his capture. He has been wanted in the united states for cocaine and marijuana smuggling since 2008.
However, ramirez trevino is not as well known in mexico as other drug lords such as the legendary leader of the sinaloa cartel, joaquin "el chapo" guzman. He initially worked for samuel flores borrego, alias "metro 3," in the reynosa region on the border with the u.S., until he rose within the organization after his murder in 2011.
Recently, the golf cartel had lost more and more of its influence. In the meantime, it is no longer a coherent group, but rather a collection of several factions operating under the umbrella of the golf cartel, write the experts of the analysis company stratfor in their latest report.
Above all, the secession of "los zetas" in 2010 has severely damaged the syndicate. The former armed arm of the gulf cartel was recruited, at least initially, primarily from deserted members of special forces units. Meanwhile, the zetas are considered the most powerful crime syndicate in the country.
In the fight against the group, the golf cartel had recently joined forces with the sinaloa cartel and the so-called knights of the temple. In defending its traditional zones of influence in tamaulipas, the gulf cartel is partly dependent on the active support of its allies, according to the stratfor analysis.