Although he’s eliminated 30 people since the age of 20, this cartel killer has no regrets and feels his work is necessary to protect his community.
“A lot of times your neighborhood, your town, your city is being invaded by people who you think are going to hurt your family, your society,” he says under anonymity to the AP. “Well, then you have to act, because the government isn’t going to come help you.”
The 29-year-old defends his cartel’s territory near Acapulco, in the Costa Grande of Guerrero and near the farmland that produces heroin poppies and marijuana.
He disappears people for various reasons, but mostly because they work for a rival cartel or have shared information. By ‘disappearing’ he means kidnapping, torturing, and killing. When he tortures he does it in three ways: simulated drowning, beatings, and waterboarding. He also uses electric shocks to the testicles, tongue and the soles of the feet. Most of the time he gets the information he needs and ends the ritual by killing the person and burying them where no one will find them.
Although he remembers the number of victims he’s killed and where he buried them, he doesn’t remember the person. “Over time,” he says, “you forget.”
Since there are so many cartels in Mexico, there are many more killers like him. In fact, since 2007 the number of the disappeared has reached 26,000 in the country, 1,000 just in Guerrero. But he says the problem is much bigger than the officials report.
Because he only has a grade-school education, he raises cattle for a living and does the cartel killing as a side job. In terms of his future, he says, “I don’t really see anything.”
Read more about this problem and the cartel hitman’s fears here.