Throughout this series, I have asserted that “seepage” of U.S. military weapons sold to various and sundry Latin American countries and (shadowy proxies) over the last five decades account for the vast majority of weapons used by Mexican drug cartels. Not guns purchased in small amounts from U.S. gun stores, and then walked into Mexico by a procession of low level drug thugs—with or without the ATF’s help. That idea caught a bit of traction yesterday when biggovernment.com ran the numbers for its audience. To Mr. Stilson’s most excellent analysis, I’d like to add a little something the gun grabbers call common sense. Here’s the question: why would they bother with gun store guns? Do you have any IDEA how much money the cartels are raking in from American consumers? Here’s a little taste (so to speak) . . .
The following info comes from Uncle Sam’s indictment of Victor Zambada-Niebla, a Sinaloa cartel jefe currently residing in a Chicago jail. Mr. Zambada-Niebla contends that the same feds who are trying to keep him in prison for the rest of his life helped his organization smuggle drugs into the U.S. Or at least turned many a blind eye, in exchange for intel on Los Zetas and others. Anyway, he’s still breathing (miraculously) and his trial is pending. Meanwhile, here’s the money shot [click here for the pdf]:
The proffered testimony of the Flores brothers regarding the collection and handling of cash narcotics proceeds is corroborated by multiple law enforcement money seizures in amounts consistent with the Flores’ brothers description of the volume of drugs and money involved in this conspiracy. Between October 29, 2008, and November 25, 2008, law enforcement seized a total of approximately $15,185,000 in cash narcotics proceeds directly related to the charged conspiracy, as described below [click here for the full pdf]:
- (1) On or about April 14, 2008, law enforcement seized approximately $4,000,000 in United States currency in Palos Hills, Illinois;
- (2) On or about October 29, 2008, law enforcement seized approximately $4,700,000 in United States currency in Hinsdale, Illinois;
- (3) On or about November 4, 2008, law enforcement seized approximately $4,000,000 in United States currency in Hinsdale, Illinois;
- (4) On or about November 17, 2008, law enforcement seized approximately $1,000,000 in United States currency in Romeoville, Illinois;
- (5) On or about November 22, 2008, law enforcement seized approximately $715,000 in United States currency in Chicago, Illinois;6 and
- (6) On or about November 25, 2008, law enforcement seized approximately $4,770,000 in United States currency in Romeoville, Illinois.
These seizures were the result of searches of money stash houses used by the Flores brothers and direct interactions with couriers for the Flores brothers and the Sinaloa Cartel. In furtherance of the investigation, a controlled delivery was made from law enforcement agents to couriers of the Sinaloa Cartel of the $4,000,000 recovered from a Flores brothers’ stash house in Hinsdale on November 4, 2008. In conducting the controlled delivery, DEA agents from Chicago transported the $4,000,000 to Los Angeles.
On November 12, 2008, this money was provided to couriers for the Sinaloa Cartel. Law enforcement maintained surveillance of the money and observed as it was taken to a warehouse and then subsequently loaded into a tractor trailer. On November 13, 2008, agents followed the tractor trailer as it left the Los Angeles area and drove to the U.S.-Mexico border. Agents observed the tractor trailer carrying the money across the border to Mexicali, Baja . . .
The flow of this money is consistent with the Flores brothers description of how payments were made to the Sinaloa Cartel on a regular basis. The money was first collected from the Flores brothers’ narcotics customers as payment for drugs received; the money was then consolidated, counted, and packaged in a Flores brothers’ stash house; next the money was transported from Chicago to Los Angeles, where it was provided to couriers of the Sinaloa Cartel; and finally, the money was smuggled across the border into Mexico to be delivered to the Sinaloa Cartel as payment for the Flores brothers’ running debt.
Just so we’re clear: that $15m represents one month’s take exported to Mexico by one cartel from one U.S. region. That “income stream alone” is/was worth $180 million in cash money per year. Oh, and it’s not the same Sinaloan stash (another $15m) confiscated by the Mexican military yesterday, as chronicled in the video above.
So, do you really think Mexican drug cartels need/needed to commission a [relative] handful of straw buyers to walk into U.S. gun stores and then purchase and smuggle some 2000 guns in [relative] dribs and drabs?
Who, if anyone, was the ATF trying to snare with Operation Fast and Furious? And if you can answer that question, why didn’t the Bureau arrest a single sole until after U.S. Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry was shot and killed by drug thugs wielding ATF-enabled firearms?
This is our government acting or failing to act in or name. We deserve to know the truth. And by God, someday we will.