Mexican authorites capture drug lord Sergio Villarreal Barragan “el Grande”

September 13th, 2010 - 8:28 pm ICT by BNO News  

PUEBLA, MEXICO (BNO NEWS) — One of Mexico’s most wanted drug traffickers, Sergio Villarreal Barragan, also known as “el Grande,” was captured on Sunday, local authorities confirmed on Monday.

Two Navy vehicles blocked the access doors to the residence in which Barragan was suspected to be located at while a helicopter hovered over the area. Meanwhile, Marines approached the house. El Grande, which is Spanish for ‘the Big One’, was found with an elderly person and two women. He surrendered without causing problems.

Barragan, who was residing in a high-class area in the city of Puebla in the central region of Mexico, had been involved with two different Mexican drug cartels. One was the Juarez cartel and later he joined the Sinaloa cartel. He began his criminal career working with Edgar Valdez Villarreal, “El Barbie,” who had been previously captured on August 31, but he is also known for working alongside drug lords Joaquin “el Chapo” Guzman and Arturo Beltran Leyva, “the boss of bosses,” along with others.

Authorities said 30 Mexican Marines secured the area prior to the operation, prohibiting access or exit for nearly seven hours. They checked surrounding vehicles and seized neighbors’ phones to avoid any communication.

The operation went smoothly and Barragan, who was accused of killing 43 people and operating in an area that covered three different states, surrendered to authorities without a single gunshot being fired.

Barragan was arrested along with his two bodyguards - Jesus Enrique Jurado Torres and Ramiro Cisneros Aguirre. Authorities also seized four vehicles, of which three were equipped with bullet-proof coating, and several weapons.

Barragan was in the middle of a drug war with Valdez Villarreal, accusing him of a betrayal that ended with the arrest of Beltran Leyva. This led to a series of killings in the states of Morelos, Mexico State, and Guerrero.

“The federal government adds the arrest of Sergio Villarreal Barragan to those of Edgar Valdez Villarreal, Gerardo Alvarez, el Indio, Carlos and Alfredo Beltran Leyva, el Mochomo, in the past months, which include the death of Arturo Beltran Leyva, who was killed in clashes with the Navy last December,” said Alejandro Poire, Secretary of the Security Cabinet.

“This is a new and resounding blow by the federal government against crime, given the high rank and dangerousness of this person inside one of the country’s most extensive criminal organizations which has now been deeply weakened,” Poire added, describing this latest capture as a “new crushing blow” against organized crime.

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