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Castrellon Consulate Trial: Jury hears taped radio conversations between alleged hitmen

By Angela Kocherga
Published On: Feb 04 2014 04:20:45 PM CST
Updated On: Feb 19 2014 11:30:30 AM CST


A U.S. Consulate employee and her El Paso County corrections officer husband were killed in Juarez nearly four years ago.

EL PASO, Texas -

Hitmen with the Barrio Azteca gang at one point got training from the Zetas according to testimony Tuesday in the trial of an alleged gang leader charged with ordering the murders of three people linked to the U.S. Consulate in Juarez.

The jury heard evidence Tuesday that included taped radio conversations between alleged hitmen involved in the attack.

The prosecution's main witness is a self-described Barrio Azteca, a gang with members on both sides of the border. In English -- Jesus Chavez Castillo testified he was "right hand man" of the gang leader he says ordered the consulate killings.

He testified his former boss, Arturo Gallegos Castrellon, was in charge of teams of hitmen in Juarez - including the gunmen who killed Leslie Enriquez and her husband Arthur Redelfs.

She worked for the consulate. He was a detention officer at the El Paso county jail.  Their baby girl survived.

The gang member also identified voices on radio recordings of the hit men right before and after the killings.

The jury has also seen video of the attack captured by a border patrol camera near an international bridge.

According to the gang member's testimony, the Barrio Aztecas worked with the Juarez cartel and also paid off some city and federal police officers.

He testified the Juarez cartel suspected someone in the consulate was providing visas for rivals who were selling cheaper drugs in El Paso.

The testimony today was gruesome with the gang member describing killing methods, mutilated bodies and beheadings.

He also said the Barrio Aztecas send hit squads to the nearby state Coahuila to get training from the brutal Zetas cartel. But that ended when the Zetas wanted the gang members to join their ranks.


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