On the afternoon of June 26, Jesus Aurelio Ibarra, alias “Comandante Aurelio,” one of the most important leaders and operators of the Sinaloa Cartel in Sonora, was captured. According to the Mexican National Registry of Detentions (RND) official record, the alleged criminal was arrested by Sonora Public Security Department members in the city of Sonoyta.
Following his apprehension, “Comandante Aurelio” was taken to the facilities of the Mexican Attorney General’s Office (FGR) in Sonoyta and placed at the disposal of an agent of the Mexican Public Prosecutor’s Office.
According to available reports, this individual is one of the main generators of violence in the municipality of San Luis Río Colorado and, as regional leader of La Chapiza (as the Chapitos faction is also known), he has been identified as the one responsible for coordinating the arrival of drug boats in the Gulf of Santa Clara.
Local media such as Zeta Tijuana and Sonora Informativo have revealed on multiple occasions that “Comandante Aurelio” has apparently received direct orders from Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzmán’s sons to maintain armed confrontations with his rivals and take control of the plazas, charge quotas to fishermen and traffic both drugs and people to the United States.
In addition, Ibarra is presumed to be the intellectual author of several acts of violence. On July 20, 2022, Municipal Police officers in the Gulf of Santa Clara were alerted to abandoned plastic bags with mutilated limbs inside. Upon arrival, the uniformed officers found the human remains and a poster board with a threatening message addressed to the Army and the National Guard:
“Golfo de Santa Clara and San Felipe have an owner. We are the ones in charge here, keep fucking your mother with your operations, you little sh*ts, you National Guard guys, and just like this, we’re going to tear you to pieces if you keep coming to fuck around here to the Gulf. Att. Comandantes Aurelio and my carnal Cholo Quintero and Comandante Pia. La Chapizza put*s(sic.)”.
With “El Comandante Pía,” the message refers to Jesús Aurelio‘s father, Samuel Ibarra Peralta, alias “El Pía,” a longtime criminal boss who had his base of operations in the Mexicali Valley. On the other hand, “El Cholo Quintero” is a nickname alluding to a subject identified as Adán Quintero, alias “El Cholo” or “El 74″.
“El Pía,” “Comandante Aurelio,” and their alliance with La Chapiza.
Before working with “Chapo” Guzmán’s sons, “Comandante Aurelio” and his father had control of the plaza in Mexicali, Baja California. However, in 2021 they were forced to leave the region by the arrival of Los Rusos, an armed wing of the Sinaloa Cartel at the service of Ismael “El Mayo” Zambada, headed by Jesus Alexander Sanchez Felix, alias “El Ruso.”
Not wanting to align with this faction, “El Pía” and his son, along with Luis Alfredo Garibay Félix, alias “El Wicho,” took refuge in San Luis Río Colorado and joined Los Chapitos to coordinate, among other things, the unloading of airplanes coming from the Gulf of Santa Clara.
Another of the CDS cells with which these individuals apparently collaborate is Los Salazar, which emerged in 2005 under the command of Adán Salazar Zamora, alias “Don Adán,” and which currently acts as an ally of Los Chapitos in the fight against the armed group La Línea, which is part of the Juárez Cartel and has a presence in Chihuahua.