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Knights Templar

The Knights Templar (Cabelleros Templarios) emerged in March 2011 as a splinter group of the once-mighty Familia Michoacana. Like their predecessors, the Knights Templar cast themselves as a "self-defense" movement engaged in a struggle with Mexico's larger criminal cartels on behalf of the Michaocan population, and frequently employ religious imagery in their public communiques. The arrest or killing of several top leaders in 2014…

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BELTRAN LEYVA ORG / 12 AUG 2021

Mexico's process of criminal fragmentation has been a slow burn. Many of the country's mightiest criminal groups have been unable…

KNIGHTS TEMPLAR / 2 APR 2021

Following the arrest of a former Mexican mayor in Guatemala, US prosecutors unveiled an indictment against him and criminal rivals…

KNIGHTS TEMPLAR / 28 OCT 2020

Six months after a sophisticated robbery where gunmen hijacked gold and silver bars being loaded onto a plane in Mexico,…

KNIGHTS TEMPLAR / 18 FEB 2019

It’s 7 pm on a Sunday, and night is falling in this Michoacán town. The heat of the day is…

JALISCO CARTEL / 22 JUN 2017

Authorities in Mexico have arrested one of the last main leaders of the Knights Templar crime group, likely leaving…

KNIGHTS TEMPLAR / 17 JAN 2017

A new collection of essays tackles patterns of cultish behavior and ritualized violence among illegal groups across the globe, from…

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