Justice in Mexico

Juárez Cartel’s “El Diego” Arrested

Federal Police captured José Antonio Acosta Hernández, a main leader of the Juárez Cartel on July 31, 2011. Credit: Norte Digital.

08/01/11 – Mexico’s Federal government announced on Monday the arrest of José Antonio Acosta Hernández, one of the main leaders of the Juárez Cartel and alleged mastermind behind nearly 1,500 homicides. He is also suspected to be responsible for the killing of three U.S. Consulate members in March 2010, for the detonation of a number of car bombs, and for the attack on the Faith and Life (Fe y Vida) rehabilitation center in Chihuahua in June 2010 that killed 19 people. After his arrest, Acosta Hernández also admitted to giving the order for the Villa de Salvárcar massacre in Ciudad Juárez in January 2010 that killed 15 people at a birthday party, 11 of which were minors.

Acosta Hernández, also known as “El Diego,” was detained in Ciudad Juárez on July 31 after a shootout between members of the criminal group and agents of the federal government, Mexican military, and local police. The Secretary of Public Security (Secretaría de Seguridad Pública) worked on the operation with information provided by the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) and in coordination with the different levels of Mexican law enforcement. U.S. and Mexican authorities consider “El Diego” to be the second-highest member of the armed branch of the Juárez Cartel, “La Línea,” just after José Luis Ledesma.


Mosso, Rubén. “Capturan a ‘El Diego’, responsable de mil 500 muertes en Ciudad Juárez.” Milenio. July 31, 2011.

Hernández, Jaime. “EU felicita a México por captura de capo.” El Universal. August 1, 2011.

Redacción. “Le falló a El Diego otro coche bomba.” Norte Digital. August 2, 2011.

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