Justice in Mexico

35 Arrested For Involvement in Murder of Nuevo León Police Chief

Police Chief Antonio Montiel Álvarez was killed on March 2, 2012. Source: Prensa Latina

03/13/12 – Members of the State Agency of Investigation (Agencia Estatal de Investigación, AEI)  in Nuevo León have arrested 35 individuals for acting as “halcones” (hawks) in the murder of Chief Antonio Montiel Álvarez, a life-long police officer who was killed on March 2, 2012 by hit men (“sicarios”). In addition to planning the murder of Montiel Álvarez, these individuals are likely to have participated in further rights violations, kidnappings, and other homicides outside of the one that targeted Montiel Álvarez, sources say. Of the 35 individuals arrested, six are minors, two of which are women. They are suspected of forming part of a larger group of “halcones” that operate in the municipalities of Juárez and Guadalupe in Nuevo León.

The term “halcón” is used in narco-trafficking jargon to denote accomplices that act as lookouts for cartels and crime groups. Journalist Francho Barón-Cano explains in a 2006 article about Brazil that the term is used because hawks are agile birds, easy to train, and will attack any threat to the nest, which parallels the involvement of the 35 people arrested for their role in Montiel Álvarez’s murder.

According to Jorge Domene, the Security Spokesman of the State Government (vocero de seguridad del Gobierno del Estado), the two leaders of this crime cell in operation with the “halcones” have been identified as José Roberto García Morales (19) and Juan Iván Genaro Morales Barajas (18). Both received pay of “10 to 15 thousand pesos per month” from the Zetas, one of Mexico’s most violent crime organizations, and to whom Domene says the two suspected leaders are connected. Neither García Morales nor Morales Barajas have been captured.


Barón-Cano, Francho. “Halcones del narcotráfico.” Tiempo. December 6, 2006

“Detienen a 35 implicados en crimen de ministerial.” Milenio. March 13, 2012

“Detienen a 35 por muerte de agente en NL.” Reforma. March 12, 2012

1 thought on “35 Arrested For Involvement in Murder of Nuevo León Police Chief”

  1. Pingback: Zetas, and Gulf Cartel members captured in Nuevo León, solving two past crimes « Justice in Mexico

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