Mexican Drug Cartels Moving Further into the United States
While Mexican drug cartels seem to have the run of the land in Mexico, it also seems that this particular country is not big enough to contain their activities. These violent groups have made their way north, infiltrating the southern United States. They made their home in Atlanta, Georgia for a while, but crack downs by local governments are pushing them further north into the Carolinas.
The SC News recently reported that the criminal activity is already being seen in North and South Carolina. According to Reggie Lloyd, Director of the South Carolina State Law Enforcement Division (SLED), a recent arrest in Spartanburg, SC seems to fit the MO of a cartel.
Sheriffs in Spartanburg announced they had arrested and charged Edgar Quintanilla-Arteaga and Raudel Cortex Haro with trafficking almost 200 pounds of marijuana. More than $1,000 was seized from Haro in the arrest. Both men hail from Charlotte, NC.
Arrest reports show that Haro was driving a luxury sedan and was trying to interfere with police officers trying to track the truck carrying the marijuana. The truck was being driven by Quintanilla. Haro reportedly nearly hit a police vehicle in his attempt to get rid of police.
There has been no official mention of involvement by a cartel, yet Spartanburg Country Sheriff Chuck Wright suspects a large operation. Key elements that generate this suspicion include the luxury vehicle, the large amount of product and the organization associated with the travel.
According to reports, Haro was released on February 28. Quintanilla was still being held as of March 1.