Members of Mexico’s drug trafficking organisations are increasingly moving their families to the United States, according to an alert from the National Drug Intelligence centre, obtained by the Mexican paper El Universal.The alert warns that the shift has led to growing threat of violence along the southwest border, and says U.S. security agencies are now starting to seek information on the identities of members of Mexican crime groups who are living or frequently travelling in the U.S.
Dated March 27, 2011, the notice was reportedly distributed to agencies under the U.S. Department of Justice and Homeland Security, as well as embassies and border checkpoints last week.
Mexican drug trafficking organisations are operating more than 230 U.S. cities and have expanded their presence beyond the border states, deputy secretary of state Roberta Jacobson said this week.
The Sinaloa cartel has the largest presence, with cells in at least 75 cities, while the Gulf Cartel and Los Zetas have operations in at least 37 cities. The Juarez Cartel is established in 33 cities, the Adrian Beltran Leyva organisation is in 30 cities, and the Tijuana Cartel is in 21 cities.