HomeNewsAnalysisTop Zeta Leader Captured in Oaxaca
ANALYSIS

Top Zeta Leader Captured in Oaxaca

MEXICO / 18 JAN 2011 BY INSIGHT CRIME EN

Mexican police announced on Tuesday the capture of Flavio Mendez Santiago, alias "El Amarillo," a top leader of the feared Zetas criminal syndicate, in the town of Villa Etla, in the southern state of Oaxaca.

Authorities say Santiago is one of the Zetas founders and top leaders, in charge of drug and human trafficking in a region full of both, Mexico's El Universal newspaper reports.

The capture comes as the Zetas rev up the violence and mayhem in the region. The Associated Press reports that the group, which began operating independently in 2007 and split from their progenitors the Gulf Cartel last year, has taken over the area along the Guatemalan border and could be responsible for the disappearance of up to 40 illegal immigrants who were traveling through the region on their way north.

The Zetas, whose core remains ex-military from Mexico and Guatemala, are known for their violent and intractable positions concerning rivals. They have spread their presence geographically and have expanded their criminal portfolio beyond drug trafficking to include human trafficking, contraband, and pirated goods. The Guatemalan government cited their presence in December when it announced a 30-day state of siege in the Alta Verapaz province in central Guatemala.

share icon icon icon

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.

DONATE

What are your thoughts? Click here to send InSight Crime your comments.

We encourage readers to copy and distribute our work for non-commercial purposes, with attribution to InSight Crime in the byline and links to the original at both the top and bottom of the article. Check the Creative Commons website for more details of how to share our work, and please send us an email if you use an article.

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.

DONATE

Related Content

CHAPITOS / 23 AUG 2021

Lacking government support and effective oversight, drug rehab centers in Mexico are being exploited by organized crime groups, which are…

EXTORTION / 22 FEB 2022

Recent US sanctions against an alleged Jalisco Cartel operative have revealed that the powerful Mexican group is using the resort…

EL MENCHO / 18 NOV 2021

The arrest of the wife of CJNG boss El Mencho is being interpreted as a win against the cartel and…

About InSight Crime

THE ORGANIZATION

Escaping Barrio 18

27 JAN 2023

Last week, InSight Crime published an investigation charting the story of Desafío, a 28-year-old Barrio 18 gang member who is desperate to escape gang life. But there’s one problem: he’s…

THE ORGANIZATION

Europe Coverage Makes a Splash

20 JAN 2023

Last week, InSight Crime published an analysis of the role of Amsterdam’s Schiphol Airport as an arrival hub for cocaine and methamphetamine from Mexico.  The article was picked up by…

THE ORGANIZATION

World Looks to InSight Crime for Mexico Expertise

13 JAN 2023

Our coverage of the arrest of Chapitos’ co-founder Ovidio Guzmán López in Mexico has received worldwide attention.In the UK, outlets including The Independent and BBC…

THE ORGANIZATION

InSight Crime Shares Expertise with US State Department

16 DEC 2022

Last week, InSight Crime Co-founder Steven Dudley took part in the International Anti-Corruption Conference organized by the US State Department’s Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, & Labor and…

THE ORGANIZATION

Immediate Response to US-Mexico Marijuana Investigation

9 DEC 2022

InSight Crime’s investigation into how the legalization of marijuana in many US states has changed Mexico’s criminal dynamics made a splash this week appearing on the front page of…