Cienfuegos offered not to upset the Beltrán Leyva Cartel and the support of the Sinaloa government

© Forbes Mexico

Among the messages included in the file of the former Secretary of Defense, Salvador Cienfuegos, the former federal official would have commented in a text to Daniel Silva Garate, the H9, who would intercede for him and the leader of the Beltrán Leyva Cartel, Juan Francisco Patron Sánchez , the H2, so that the incoming government of Sinaloa in 2016 favored them.

In an exchange of messages on June 22, 2016, 17 days after the election in that entity that the PRI won Quirino Ordaz Coppel, one of the messages attributed to Cienfuegos reveals to criminal leaders that he would seek to support them to control part of the market in Sinaloa.

“Help me to try to fix things so that they gain ground and more personal, so that they no longer steal and are blaming my godson, because they want to or not, those things get to where I am, but don’t worry, I will I am supporting the new government that will enter Sinaloa, I just didn’t want to say anything to them until everything was settled, ”the document reads of 751 pages that the DEA delivered to the Mexican government to prosecute Cienfuegos, who was exonerated this Thursday.

Among the commitments read in the messages intercepted by the US authorities, it appears that Cienfuegos would have offered protection to the Beltrán Leyva criminal group, whose leader was then H2.

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In the first meeting, in December 2015, the H9 commented to its boss that the general offered them protection so that they would not have problems with operations from the Army, the Navy or the Federal Police.

“He says that as long as he is, you will be free. That they are never going to do strong operations, that you sleep peacefully, (…) Let him check how much you have that an operation does not enter your state, that you check that well. He says that for him he is prohibited from going to his state”, Is commented in the messages of December 9, 2015.

While in this conversation, the former Secretary of Defense agrees to arrest leaders of rival cartels, such as Ignacio “Mayo” Zambada, of the Sinaloa Cartel; or the children of Joaquín “Chapo” Guzmán; or to Nemesio Oseguera, “Mencho”.

He even refers to the latter as the guy who likes to shoot planes, in reference to the attack committed by the group he leads, the Jalisco Nueva Generación Cartel, by shooting down a military helicopter and causing the death of 8 military personnel and a federal police officer.

“Who likes to shoot helicopters, I already gave the order to kill him, and from that arrangement we can get something good”, Said the general, identified as Zepeda, in June 2016.

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Cienfuegos demands ‘favors’

The messages also show the request made by the then federal official for some remuneration for his support, what he called favors.

On May 1, after several messages alerting Silva Garate to be attentive to the telephone to notify them of any operation, Cienfuegos reminded them to do him the favor “before the 5th, thank you.”

Similarly, after explaining his lobbying work before the new government of Sinaloa, Cienfuegos ironic with his interlocutor saying that they forget about him.

“My godson (H2) has a great defect. It does not remember me. He never does it first, I have to remind him. I have to ask (the favor) even though it’s not for me, it is for several sides. I don’t keep anything. I have not picked up a weight, everything is distributed, what I have done, I have helped them not to bother them “, the message reads.

He added that at the time he was recommending the criminal group with a government person in Culiacán “but since he puts himself in a very foolish plan (…) for when he gives me something,” the messages say.

The file with the intercepted messages was released by the Ministry of Foreign Relations this Friday, one day after the Attorney General’s Office decided not to initiate criminal action against Cienfuegos Zepeda.

The former Secretary of Defense was arrested in October 2020 in the United States, accused of conspiracy to traffic drugs and conspiracy, among other charges. But he was transferred to Mexico in November, after the Mexican government demanded that he be processed in the country.

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