The resurgence of La Familia Michoacana

 Chivis Martinez Borderland Beat TY Steve   LaSillaRota

“La
Familia Michoacana” was in decline, however, it was reborn. It has a
second wind that puts it back in the sights of the Mexican and US government

By
RODRIGO GUTIÉRREZ GONZÁLEZ OCTOBER 5, 2020

“La
Familia Michoacana” seemed like a cartel in decline, practically
disappeared on the national map of drug trafficking; However, he was reborn,
today it has a second wind that puts the cartel back in the sights of the
Mexican and US government .

THE FIRST
BOOM

The
criminal organization was one of the most fearsome organizations in the
country, born in the eighties, it was the executioner of Michoacán in the first
decade of the two thousand.

First, an
ally of “Los Zetas”, who learned military tactics from what was the
armed wing of the Gulf Cartel (CDG), adding a religious pseudo-ideology to
their criminal practices.

Later, he
became independent and violently removed his former associates from the entity,
becoming the head of the Michoacán state.

Its top
leaders were: Enrique “Kike” Plancarte; Nazario Moreno González, “El Chayo”; and by José de Jesús Méndez Vargas, “El Chango
Méndez”. (Carlos Rosales Mendoza founder/leader should be named on this
list)

Michoacán
still remembers the abandonment of five human heads in a den in Uruapan, Michoacán,
in 2006; or the granadazos in the center of Morelia during the national
festivities of 2008.

In 2009,
in a publication of the Official Gazette of the Federation, the government of
Felipe Calderón offered rewards of 30 million pesos to those who help find the
whereabouts of the main drug trafficking leaders.

Among the
most wanted capos were Nazario Moreno, “El Chayo”; Servando Gómez
Martínez, “La Tuta”, José de Jesús Méndez Vargas, “El Chango”;
and Dionicio Loya Plancarte, “El Tío”. All of them from the ”
Michoacan Family”.

THE FALL

Starting
in 2010, everything changed. The cartel began to disappear in the criminal
sphere.

One of
the reasons for its decline, even mentioned by the US government, is that “La Familia Michoacana” requested a truce with the Mexican
authorities in exchange for the dissolution of the organization.

Another
of the arguments for his first fall were the differences in the leadership: “El Chango Méndez” and “El Chayo” thereby, the two leaders had
a falling out and split. (one of the reasons often pointed to is their clash
regarding Los Zetas involvement, Chango supporting the involvement)

Nazario Moreno,
along with “Kike” Plancarte, separated from “La Familia”
and founded “Los Caballeros Templarios”, where they accentuated
religious overtones and placed “El Chayo” as their “messiah.”


They took
advantage of the fact that “El Chayo” was presumed dead by the
Mexican authorities without evidence – more than an audio ” La Tuta ”
telling “his people” that Nazario Moreno “was no longer with
us” after a confrontation with Federal Forces – to ensure that the capo would
return from death.

The
weakening of “La Familia Michoacana” was consolidated with the
capture of “El Chango Méndez” in 2011.

The power
vacuum left by ” La Familia Michoacana” was quickly taken over by “Los Caballeros Templarios “.

THE
RESURGENCE

The
criminal power of “Los Caballeros Templarios” was more violent than
that of “La Familia Michoacana “, they controlled practically the
entire state and, in addition to drug trafficking, they ventured into
extortion, kidnapping and illegal seizure of mines.

The
violence against the population was such and the government’s response was
non-existent, that self-defense groups were born to remove the “Templars”
from their lands. The armed movement caught the attention of the government of
Enrique Peña Nieto, who set “The Knights Templar” as a priority
target.

Then, its
leaders began to fall: “El Chayo” Moreno and “Kike”
Plancarte were killed by federal forces in 2014; “La Tuta” was
already arrested in 2015. While the self-defense groups (autodefensas) were
taking their operators out of the Michoacán municipalities.

However, some
of these self-defense groups were co-opted by members of organized crime,
mainly the Cartel Jalisco Nueva Generación (CJNG), who began to grow in 2015.
(CJNG/Mencho allied with the Sierra-Santana brothers aka Los Viagras in an agreement
that Mencho would supply all equipment, weapons, funding to eliminate the
autodefensas and Tuta.  Allegedly, Rafa
Caro Quintero supported the effort and supplied funding and vehicles.  Tuta was among the last to know of this agreement
between his enemy and his former members)

The CJNG
made itself out of the power vacuum in Michoacán, after the constant blows
against “Los Templarios”, with the help of local criminal gangs, such
as “Los Viagras” and the “Familia Michoacana” itself.

The
Sierra Santana brothers, leaders of “Los Viagras”, were part of the
self-defense groups ; like Jesús Méndez , “El Chuchín”, son of “El Chango Méndez” and compadre of Nemesio Oseguera Cervantes , “El Mencho”, maximum leader of the CJNG .

Thus, “La Familia Michoacana” re-emerged in its homeland with the backing of
the CJNG. They expanded, with the help of “El Mencho”, in Guerrero ,
State of Mexico and even had a presence in Colima.

THE
CONSOLIDATION

The
alliance of “La Familia Michoacana” with the CJNG was broken. There are
still no clear reasons for their break, but there are records of clashes
between the two cartels.

Although “La Familia Michoacana” was gradually relegated from Michoacán, they
made the State of Mexico their criminal bastion.

The
Secretariat of National Defense (Sedena) maintains that “La Familia
Michoacana” maintains an alliance with ” The Caballeros Templarios”
in the State of Mexico , to confront “Guerreros Unidos”, which has resulted
in the weakening of the criminal organization (GU).

The
Attorney General’s Office of the State of Mexico (FGJEM) points out the most
wanted in the Mexican entity as the brothers Johnny Hurtado Olascoaga, alias “El Pez”, and José Alfredo Hurtado Olascoaga, alias “El
Fresa”, for whom it offers 500 thousand pesos of reward for his capture.

The
Sedena coincides with the Mexican Prosecutor’s Office of the Hurtado Olascoaga
leadership in “La Familia Michoacana.”

Regarding
its presence in Mexican territory, different national and international
agencies differ, but there are at least three states that constantly mention: Michoacán,
Guerrero and the State of Mexico .

For example,
a document from the Attorney General’s Office (FGR) indicates that “La
Familia Michoacana” has a presence in Morelos, Guerrero and the State of
Mexico .

For its
part, information from the Financial Intelligence Unit (UIF) of the Ministry of
Finance and Public Credit (SHCP) places “La Familia Michoacana” in
Michoacán , Guerrero and the State of Mexico .

While the
government of the United States says they have presence in Michoacan and Guerrero,
alongside identifying operations in the state of Washington, in partnership
with gangs;  Mexican Mafia”, “Norteños”, “Sureños” and Peckerwoods”.

The same
US authorities claim that it has specialized in the production and smuggling of
methamphetamine, along with the trafficking of other synthetic drugs. They are
also known to traffic marijuana, cocaine, and heroin.