Action 4 Investigates: Cartel Murder & Kidnapping
Wed, 12 May 2010 22:45:39 GMT —
At first glance, Falcon Lake looks peaceful.
The international waters are filled with fisherman during the day but are also used as a smuggling route for drug cartels.
Mexican military helicopters have been spotted twice just off the shore and now it's getting personal.
Eva Martinez is desperately pleading for the safe return of her two grandchildren: 1-year-old Samuel Luna and 2-year-old Nayleah Luna.
Both have been missing ever since their mother Maricela Ayers took them across the border in April to visit her grandparents in Reynosa.
A couple of weeks later, the 21-year-old mother of three turns up dead in Miguel Aleman.
Her body had been dismembered and dumped at a cemetery in that city.
Martinez says her daughter-in-law was three months pregnant at the time of the gruesome killing.
Texas Border Sheriff's Coalition Chairman and Zapata County Sheriff Sigifredo Gonzalez worries the crime across the border is only the tip of the iceberg.
"If something's not done fast to stop this thing from happening, we're going to have some major spillover violence, Gonzalez told Action 4 News. I give it about three months."
But it's already happening.
Sheriff's deputies caught members of the Zetas drug cartel in April.
The group was trying to kidnap a man from a Zapata mobile home and take him across the border into Mexico.
Sheriff Gonzalez said if something is not done soon to fight the violence from spilling over, there is going to be a major increase in the violence that TMs already happening now.
All five men are being held in the Zapata County Jail under attempted kidnapping charges.
They allegedly planned to take the man across Falcon Lake and kill him in Mexico, claiming he stole a load of drugs from them.
Sheriff Gonzalez told Action 4 News that he TMs frustrated about the spillover violence and said the United States is just throwing money at the problem in Mexico instead of helping local law enforcement beef-up their man-power.
"The government, I think, realizes what's actually happening, Gonzalez said. I think the government just doesn't want to admit it."
He said ignoring the violence on the American side of the border to keep tourists from turning away.
"I think people are more concerned with tourism than with human lives, Gonzalez said. Troops need to be sent to this area. People complain about we're going to militarize the border. Well what is Mexico doing? They've had troops all the time."