Mar 12, 2012

Drug War: “Zetas” Bribe Police with payments of up to 600 Thousand Pesos

 El Universal-  "A protection network for the criminal group in Coahuila

Commanders of the Federal Investigation Agency (AFI) and the Federal Prosecutor’s Police Office (PFM) received between 60,000 ($4,735) and 600,000 pesos ($47,357.40) per month in order to move police off the highways of Coahuila and notify the organized crime group, Los Zetas, about the actions of the armed forces ordered to combat them, informed the Mexican Attorney General’s Office (PGR).

Without going into specific detail, the PGR has identified 11 current and former government officials from Coahuila that formed part of a protection network for the Zetas, four of which were detained and arraigned in the last few weeks, four of whom are currently being passed through the legal processes, and three more who are fugitives from the law.

Standing out among the police commanders accused is Enrique Gonzales Nava Yaqui. He was the regional head of the AFI, and also the man in charge of paying government officials to let the Zetas “work.” He received 600,000 pesos per month, informed Jose Cuitlahuac Salinas, chief of the Attorney General’s Special Department on Organized Crime (SIEDO) in a press conference.

Valbuena or Balbuena, the nickname with which the organization identified Jose Luis Balbuena Flores, was also involved. His job was to inform the Zetas of the operations mounted against them and “clear the highways” when the criminal group was transporting drugs, weapons, or money.

He also placed the checkpoints in Saltillo, an activity for which he received 70,000 pesos ($5,525) monthly.

“Glenda” is the nickname for another police commander involved with the Zetas, and it corresponds to Humberto Torres Charles, brother to the ex-prosecutor, whose job was to throw off investigations that were related to organized crime. He also worked in the Health Department of Coahuila and received 300,000 pesos ($23,678.70) per month from the Zetas.

Cuitlahuac Salinas also claimed that they had performed searches in 11 homes, nine in Saltillo and two in Monterrey, in properties that had already been secured, and have established the way in which the protection network operated for the criminal organization.

“The investigation uncovered bribes in the form of domestic and foreign currency that were separated and marked and ‘payroll.’ They mentioned key names of diverse government officials in the state of Coahuila,” detailed the SIEDO chief.

The detention of a Zetas commander in January 2012, said Cuitlahuac Salinas, allowed authorities to identify the aliases of those working with the cartel. Cuitlahuac Salinas said the Zetas gave money to allow the unmolested transport of drugs and contraband in Piedras, Negras, Ciudad Acuna, Monclova, Torreon, and Saltillo." Spanish original 

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