Monday, October 1, 2012

Former Yucatán men nabbed in Colorado cocaine bust

Gang imported $72 million a year in Colombian coke

Tekax de Álvaro Obregón, Yucatán -
Two former residents of this Mayan town in southern Yucatán have been arrested in Denver and face up to 60 years in federal prison for importing Colombian cocaine.

The men were part of a 10 person drug ring which purchased six million dollars a month in cocaine for resale in the U.S., principally in California and Colorado. All of the drugs passed through Mexico on their way to the United States, authorities said.

They were arrested by a joint federal-state strike force of DEA, FBI and ICE (U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement) agents, and Aurora, Colorado police.

The Tekax men were in possession of 25 kilos (about 55 pounds) of cocaine when they were taken into custody on Saturday (Sept. 29). A Denver prosecutor estimated that the street value of the drugs was about $750,000. The gang also dealt in methamphetamine.

Tekax is near Ticul and Oxkutzcab, southeast of the state capital of Mérida (click on map). It is not known when the two men left Yucatán for the United States, or whether they were lawful residents.

Last week the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) reported that Central America is a bridge for drugs produced in South America and sold in the United States, especially cocaine. About 90% of all cocaine which arrives in the U.S. first passes through Mexico, according to UNODC.

A note to Mayan land visitors:
This is Ticul, Yucatán, not Tekax (which I've never been to), but if the latter resembles the former, I can understand why these two accused drug dealers abandoned the area altogether and tried their luck in the States. A more oppressive, desultory place than Ticul is impossible to imagine. If you're not already depressed when you get there (easy to accomplish, if you ride down in a commuter van packed with returning locals who pass the time talking in loud voices on their Plan Amigo cell phones), you will be by the time you're ready to return to Mérida. What is there to see in Ticul? This decrepit iglesia. Truly, it is a town rich in lack of charm. Enjoy the photo, save your pesos.

Sept. 21 - Does eastern Yucatán belong to El Chapo Guzmán?
Nov. 12, 2011 - U.S. intensely focused on Yucatán security in 2008-2009, diplomatic cables reveal


  1. Harshing a little on La Perla del Sur? What has Ticul really ever done to you?

  2. De veras, el más feo pueblito que nunca lo he visto . . .

    Saludos, Darin, y que gusto recibir, como siempre, tu muy astuta observación.