Drug cartel leader El Coss arrest in Mexico portends serious violence

El Coss, head of the Gulf Cartel in Mexico, was arrested Wednesday. Casual observers might think this would mean less violence, torture, beheadings, and drug dealing. But instead it may create more as other cartels move in to fill the void.

The Gulf Cartel, which controls a critical northeast part of Mexico, was weakened before this arrest by battles with other cartels. The two dominant cartels, Sinaloa and the Zetas, will almost certainly go to war for control of Gulf territory, with Sinaloa siding with whatever remains of the Gulf Cartel.

Sylvia Longmire says “There’s very little chance that northern Tamaulipas can escape a dramatic rise in violence right now.”