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Tag: fighting

Louisiana Drug Trafficker Used Dog and Cockfights to Recruit for His Drug Ring

louisiana-mapBy Matt Castello
ticklethewire.com

For a big-time Louisiana drug trafficker, the dog and cockfighting ring served as the ideal venue to help expand his drug ring.

Pedro Mendez Ramos, of Church Point, La., who authorities described as “an avid pit bull and cock fighter”, used more than 300 gamecocks and 60 pit bulls as a recruiting tool for the drug organization he headed up.

Late last week, Ramos, 41, was sentenced in U.S. District Court in Lake Charles, La., to 12.5 years in prison.

Authorities said the organization transported and distributed cocaine and marijuana from the Brownsville, Tex. area to the Church Point, La. area and then to Florida, Tennessee, Mississippi, Georgia, and other parts of Louisiana.

Members of the Gulf Cartel, a Matamoros, Mexico based drug organization, directly supplied drugs to Ramos’ crew, authorities said.

An investigation nicknamed “Operation Fowl Play” and “Rio Gallo” netted indictments of 18 men (including Ramos) on a variety of drug trafficking, money laundering and firearms charges.

The DEA, working together with local and state law enforcement, seized approximately 111 kilograms of cocaine from the drug organization along with $1.8 million in cash and about $1 million in property in Louisiana and Texas, authorities said.

The DEA said it’s not unusual for there to be a connection between dog fighting and other illicit activities including drug sales.

“I don’t want to say it goes hand in hand, but its safe to say there’s an overlap” between dog fighting and other forms of crime, Special Agent Roberto Bryan, a DEA spokesman in New Orleans told ticklethewire.com.

Inspector Gen. Report Says FBI and ATF Sometimes Race to Be First to Explosive Scene

The Inspector General report simply confirms what’s already been reported and spoken of between agencies. In D.C., there  clearly have been turf battles between ATF and the FBI. One of those incidents occurred in 2003 when a North Carolina man with tractor threatened to set off explosives on the Mall in Washington. And that wasn’t the only one here.  It may build agency pride, but it’s bad for the public.

Burning car

By Terry Frieden
CNN Justice Producer
WASHINGTON – The inter-agency feuding between agents of the FBI and the ATF over handling of explosives investigations is so serious they sometimes race to be first on the scene of an explosives incident, a new report says.

The report – issued Friday by the Justice Department’s inspector general – found a major duplication of effort and strong disagreement about who has jurisdiction in investigations.

Both the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives are agencies within the the Justice Department, and the department was sharply criticized by its inspector general, Glenn Fine, for failing to resolve the dispute.

“Our audit found, for example, that the FBI and ATF sometimes race to be the first federal agency on the scene of an explosives incident,” the report said. “Disputes have occurred when one agency arrives first and other agency believes the incident falls within its lead agency authority.”

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