César Carrillo Leyva, son of old Juárez Cartel boss ‘El Señor de los Cielos’, is killed in Sinaloa

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 “MX” for Borderland Beat

César Carrillo Leyva (‘Cesarín’)  

César Carrillo Leyva (‘Cesarín’), son of the old Juarez Cartel boss Amado Carrillo Fuentes (‘El Señor de los Cielos’, The Lord of the Skies), was murdered yesterday in the municipality of Navolato, Sinaloa. According to eye-witnesses, the murder occurred at around 9:15 p.m. in Alfonso G. Calderon neighborhood. Residents called the police upon hearing gunshots in the vicinity. When the municipal police arrived at the scene, they found Cesar’s body inside his garage.

According to state investigators, Cesar was murdered by two men who were waiting for him near his home that night. Judging by the evidences found at the scene, they said it was likely a drive-by shooting. Local journalists said that the murder was reportedly ordered by Los Chapitos, the sons of former Sinaloa Cartel boss Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman.

News of Julio Cesar’s death reached the morning conference of President Andrés Manuel López Obrador (AMLO). The president asked the Secretary of Security and Citizen Protection (SSPC) to respond. An SSPC official confirmed that a murder occurred in Navolato last night, but he did not identify the victim. He delegated that task to the authorities of the Sinaloa Attorney General’s Office (FGS).

Cesar’s name was made public in 2011 after several banners were placed across the state of Chihuahua announcing the emergence of the New Juarez Cartel (‘Nuevo Cartel de Juarez’). The banners stated that Cesar had assumed control of the criminal group. In 2018, Borderland Beat reported that Julio Cesar was arrested by the Mexican Navy in Navolato. His arrest was not “officially” confirmed and Cesar was subsequently released.

Cesar’s brother, Vicente Carrillo Leyva (‘El Ingeniero’, The Engineer) was arrested in 1 April 2009 in Mexico City. He was released from prison in 2018 after completing a sentence for money laundering. He also had other siblings, including: Luis Fernando Carrillo and Juan Carrillo Leyva. Luis Fernando was arrested in 2019 for being connected to the murder of Sonora model Ambar Dolares.

Investigators arrived at Julio Cesar’s house to review the scene
Julio Cesar’s body being taken to the local morgue


Cesar is the second child of Amado Carrillo Fuentes and Candelaria Leyva Cardenas. For many years, Julio Cesar’s father avoided capture from Mexican and U.S. authorities because he was successful at maintaining a low-profile. Several high-ranking members of the Mexican Army were also convicted for providing him with protection.

During his tenure, El Señor de los Cielos amassed a multi-million dollar fortune by successfully using planes to smuggle drugs into the U.S. from Mexico. He died on 4 July 1997 in Santa Monica Hospital in Mexico City following a plastic surgery. One of his mansions was auctioned in Mexico City earlier this year, as reported by Borderland Beat.

In the late 2000s, the Juarez Cartel was in an intense war with the Sinaloa Cartel for control of the El Paso–Juárez border plaza. Ciudad Juárez, the epicenter of this narco-war, ranked among the deadliest cities in the world for several years. Officials said that most of the victims were members of rival drug gangs, but civilians and members of security forces were often targeted or caught in the crossfire.

Much of the old Juarez Cartel was wiped out as the Sinaloa Cartel made major pushes into their turf. Violence began to decline in 2011 as the Sinaloa Cartel gained control of this border plaza. La Linea, which originally was the armed wing of the Juarez Cartel is now a much larger criminal network and is currently fighting Sinaloa Cartel affiliates in Chihuahua.

Sources: Riodoce; Infobae; Infobae (2); Proceso; La Jornada


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