Wednesday, August 03, 2011

Gangs evolve, eschew 'turf' wars, thanks to Mexican drug trade

The Austin Statesman yesterday reported on a presentation to the city's Public Safety Commission on gang activity in the state capitol. The story opened:
The number of documented gang members in Austin has increased about 36 percent since 2010, and law enforcement officials say they are concerned about the connection to Mexican drug cartels.

At a meeting Monday of the Austin Public Safety Commission, police Cmdr. Donald Baker said that by the Police Department's most current count, 2,657 people belong to 113 gangs in Austin.

The double-digit increase is reflected in a year-to-year comparison: There were 2,501 documented gang members in March of this year and 1,834 in March 2010. August 2010 figures were not immediately available, Baker said.

However, Baker, who oversees the department's organized crime units, cautioned that there may not be more gang members than in the past.

The documented gang members may be on the rise, he said, because law enforcement officials may be better identifying them.
The local DEA agent in charge told the commission that "four [Mexican drug] cartels are active in Austin: the Gulf Cartel, La Familia Michoacana, the Beltrán-Leyva Cartel and the Los Zetas Cartel."

It's hard to know what to make of these data without more context. If there are really 113 active criminal street gangs operating in Austin I'd be amazed. Likely a handful of bigger groups make up the bulk of the numbers. And in any event, both the form and function of gangs are evolving, an APD gang specialist told commissioners:
gangs today, including those in Austin, are less about turf wars and "red versus blue," and more about the sales of narcotics they get from Mexican cartels.

"This is a different game," Baker said. "The cartels are bringing the dope in, and this is the distribution center. They're bringing in gangs for a narco-enterprise."
To watch the presentation, see the "Channel 6 video" from the Austin Public Safety Commission's August 1 meeting, linked here, and go to agenda item four, parts one and two. MORE: From KVUE-TV.


Anonymous said...

The Mexican drug cartels find Austin and other Sanctuary Cities a welcoming place to operate. The cartels ([Gulf Cartel, La Familia Michoacana, the Beltrán-Leyva Cartel and the Los Zetas Cartel) have already established beachheads here as Mexico has sent millions across the border into the open arms of the open border advocates. These advocates are eager to change the nature of American society.

Gritsforbreakfast said...

It has nothing to do with sanctuary cities, Mr. Nativist. (Since you're too cowardly to use your own name, I'll assign you one.) Mexican cartels are active in around 250 cities around the country, and many workers in their in-the-US distribution network are American citizens.

Name five US cities you consider NOT to be sanctuary cities and it's a pretty sure bet the cartels operate in all of them, too. You can buy drugs in any city in America and almost all the harder stuff and most of the pot comes from the cartels.

rodsmith said...

simple enough to solve. You catch an illegal dead to rights comitting a crime. Just make them DEAD!

the survivor's will soon find a new place to hang out!

Gritsforbreakfast said...

rod, have you ever shot anyone for committing a crime or are you just all talk and full of shit? If the answer is "no," please refrain henceforth from advocating shooting people for whichever reason has you you worked up today - illegal immigrants, corrupt cops, prosecutors, etc.. It's lately been your principle theme, but it contributes nothing to the conversation and IMO makes you look like a snotty little turd instead of the tuff guy you seem to want to emulate. You're welcome to comment here but save that garbage for boasts at the bar. I'm tired of it.

Anonymous said...

Whites will soon be extinct.

EastTexan said...

Find one town in Texas that is not influence by the cartels. Money to start new business for Mexicans is easy obtained if one knows the right people here in this mid-size east Texas town.

rodsmith said...

actualy grits yes i have in the 1980's i had to defend myself from a criminal in italy. i now walk with a slight limp. he no longer walks anywhere.