Mexican Cartel Pleads for Forgiveness Over Fears U.S. Will Send Troops

Mexican cartel members have turned over the individuals allegedly responsible for the kidnap and murder of Americans last week and asked for forgiveness for their actions, according to reports.

Four Americans, who had crossed into Mexico so one of them could receive cosmetic surgery were kidnapped by gunmen on March 3 in a suspected case of mistaken identity. A U.S. official told CNN on Monday that the cartel may have suspected the Americans were Haitian drug smugglers.

Mexican officials announced on March 7 that two of the U.S. citizens – Zindell Brown and Shaeed Woodard – had been found dead by Mexican security forces. The pair were found in a wood cabin southeast of the border city of Matamoros.

Mexico Cartel
National Guard and military vehicles take part in an operation to transfer two of the four U.S. citizens kidnapped in Mexico's crime-ridden northeast back to Brownsville, after the other two were found dead, in Matamoros, Tamaulipas State, Mexico, on March 7, 2023. Cartel members have turned over the individuals allegedly responsible for the murder and kidnap of the Americans, according to reports. Getty

The other two kidnapped Americans were identified as Latavia "Tay" McGee and Eric James Williams. They were rescued and returned to the U.S. and a suspect is currently in custody.

According to an Associated Press report, a letter claiming to be from the Mexican drug cartel said that five men allegedly responsible for the kidnapping and murders had been handed to law enforcement.

The letter was obtained from a Tamaulipas state law enforcement official who wished to remain anonymous.

In the letter, the Scorpions faction of the Gulf Cartel apologized to the residents of Matmaoros for the gun battle, the Mexican woman who died in the shooting, Areli Pablo Servando, and the four kidnap victims and their families.

According to AP, the letter read: "We have decided to turn over those who were directly involved and responsible in the events, who at all times acted under their own decision-making and lack of discipline.

The letter also said that the individuals responsible had broken the cartel's rule about "respecting the life and well-being of the innocent."

Mexican security analyst David Saucedo spoke about this latest development and said the cartel is seeking to quell the situation.

He said: "It is very difficult right now for them to continue working in terms of street-level drug sales and transferring drugs to the United States; they are the first ones interested in closing this chapter as soon as possible."

Possible Military Response

Following the announcement that two of the kidnap victims had died, Republican politicians, including Representative James Comer and South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham, called for a U.S. military response in Mexico to crack down on the cartel.

One of the family members of the victims spoke to the Associated Press about the letter and said they do not accept the apology from the cartel.

Jerry Wallace, a cousin of one of the victims who was shot in the leg but is alive, called on the American and Mexican governments to do more to address cartel violence.

Wallace said: "It ain't gonna change nothing about the suffering that we went through."

The AP said they were shown the letter and photo of the five bound men allegedly responsible on the condition that their identities remain anonymous.

However, images of the individuals and the letter have begun to circulate on social media. A Reddit post showing their identities was posted on Thursday by user SinjiOnO and has been upvoted more than 25,000 times.

Some Reddit users questioned whether these five men were truly the individuals responsible and suggested the cartel could have intimidated or blackmailed them into going along with the plan to be handed to authorities.

Newsweek has contacted the Department of Justice for comment.