Mexican town strikes back at gang leader
Tired of Abductions, vigilantes in a Mexican town of Totolapan grab the mother of local gang leader, propose swapping her for a kidnap victim taken on Monday in the Tierra Caliente area, Guerrero, Mexico
Tequila loving drug gang boss ‘El Tequilero’ abducts so many people from Mexican town of Totoplan, upset locals decided to pay him back in his own coin
Raybel Jacobo de Almonte, aka ‘El Tequilero’ [The Tequila Drinker], has terrorized the town, kidnapped several people for extortion, as deterrence or revenge
Townsfolk formed a vigilante group, abducted dozens of his gang members, kidnapped his mom and is holding her hostage
Government stepped in as negotiators with the vigilantes who released some abducted gang members.
They intend to keep El Tequilero’s mom in exchange for his kidnap victim, Isauro de la Paz Duque
The vigilantes took Mrs Felix del Monte(photo) gang leader El Tequilero’s mom to negotiate the release of kidnapped citizen Isauro de la Paz Duque
Vigilantes in a Mexican village have seized the mother of, ‘El Tequilero’, a local gang leader and proposed swapping her for a kidnap victim taken on Monday.
Sick of seeing their family members kidnapped by the local gang, the furious citizens of the Mexican town of Totolapan have abducted the drug lord’s mother and other members of his gang to demand their release.
“We have your mother here, mister known as El Tequilero,” says Yadira Guillermo Garcia whose husband was kidnapped on Sunday. ‘El Tequilero‘s mom was taken Monday, to be used as a bargaining chip. On Tuesday the government deployed police, army and negotiators
Totolapan is controlled by Raybel Jacobo de Almonte, better known as ‘El Tequilero’, who has been warring with other underworld bosses in the area. Notorious for kidnapping citizens either for extortion or revenge and deterrence if he thinks they are helping other gangs. The latest victims of his reign of terror disappeared last week.
This week the exasperated citizens struck back, teams of vigilantes rode through Totolapan waving guns, demanding action and threatening El Tequilero’s mom.
Townsfolk from Totolapan, Mexico, formed a vigilante group after their relatives were kidnapped by crime boss ‘El Tequilero’ for purposes of extortion and punishment for helping other gangs
The latest victims of El Tequilero’s reign of terror disappeared last week, among them local construction engineer Isauro de la Paz Duque, abducted on Sunday, by men who had threatened to kill him.
On Monday, his wife Yadira Guillermo Garcia, said on a video that townspeople had taken El Tequilero’s mother – Mrs Felix del Monte.
“We have your mother here, mister known as El Tequilero,” Garcia said.
‘I propose an exchange: I’ll give you your mother if you give me my husband, but I want him safe and sound.’
This was accompanied by a photograph of the kidnapped woman sitting on the floor of an empty white room, with just a ventilation fan beside her.
Perennial drunk : Gang leader ‘El Tequilero’ drunk as usual, is seen talking to Totolapan’s mayor (in white hat)
The Tequileros are an organization that operates in the area of Tierra Caliente in the state of Guerrero whose hallmark the threat and extortion to the mayors of the region , and they do so through an armed cell called tequila Special Forces.
‘self-defense force’ [vigilantes] demand their relatives be returned by El Tequilero, and call for action against his gang
The government of Guerrero state moved to diffuse the situation Tuesday, sending around 220 soldiers and police, as well as a negotiating team, to the area.
‘The goal of the team is to ensure that no injury is done to the missing person, nor to the mother of the head of the Tequileros gang, who has apparently been taken by the self-defense forces,’ a government statement said.
The end result was the freeing of around five of the kidnap victims and an agreement to release the others on the understanding they would be investigated or charged by police.
But the mom remains in the custody of the vigilantes.
The government has agreed to have state police oversee her exchange for the kidnapped engineer.
The emergence of vigilante groups, also known as self-styled ‘community police,’ has become a headache for Guerrero’s government.
Authorities say they understand residents’ frustration but note the groups often wind up kidnapping suspects, fighting among themselves or preventing police from doing their work.
‘The truth is, they are not really community forces, nor are they police,’ Governor Hector Astudillo has said. ‘They are armed groups that unfortunately carry out acts … that generate more violence and confrontation, rather than help.’
On Tuesday, he said: ‘This is something that has to end – that every time somebody gets the idea into their head of kidnapping somebody, they kidnap them.’
El Tequilero’ has lived up to his nickname, which translates roughly as ‘The Tequila Drinker.’
In his only known public appearance, he was captured on video drinking with the town’s mayor-elect. He mumbles inaudibly and has to be held up in a sitting position by one of his henchmen.
In late November, the Guerrero government said he was believed to have been wounded and was hiding out with his kidnap victims in the mountains.
The state attorney general headed an extensive manhunt using helicopters and troops on the ground in an unsuccessful effort to locate the gang leader.
The area around Totolapan is a hotbed of drug trafficking, killings and extortion. It is the foot of the mountains that produce much of Mexico’s opium poppy crop.
Totolapan itself is considered so dangerous that many outlying hamlets in the township have been abandoned by fearful residents.
In 2014, the battered body of the parish priest, the Rev. Ascension Acuna Osorio, was found floating in the Balsas river near the town.