Gulf Cartel Faction Boss ‘El Gero’ Survives Assassination Attempt in His Bullet-Proof Truck

“MX” for Borderland Beat; TY to “The Owl”

The Northeast Cartel (CDN) is after Jerónimo Hernández de la Rosa (photo: ValorTamaulipeco) 

Jeronimo Hernandez de la Rosa, commonly referred to by his alias ‘El Gero’ and/or ‘El Jero’, is the suspected plaza boss of the Gulf Cartel (CDG) faction based in Cadereyta, a municipality in the Monterrey metropolitan area. Security forces say he heads drug trafficking and oil theft activities in this part of Nuevo Leon.

But the rival Northeast Cartel (CDN) wants its share as well and has been targeting El Gero since last year. The most recent attack against him ocurred several weeks ago while El Gero was driving in his truck. Police reports say that CDN gunmen ambushed and nearly killed him.

About six shots hit the side window where El Gero was driving, but the bullet-proof window glass composite saved him. Once the gunmen left, El Gero abandoned his truck and was able to escape by foot.

Days later, the CDN attacks continued; two of El Gero’s men were killed in Cadereyta.

Background

In Cadereyta, the fight between the CDG and the CDN has been conducted primarily through a series of ambush attacks rather than lengthy gunfight confrontations. One of the first attacks occurred in March 2020, when CDN assassins shot and killed El Gero’s predecessor, Ulises Ramses Lozano Garcia, and another crime boss during a clandestine cockfight.

The other man was Osvaldo Pérez Moreno;  five others were injured: Luis Felipe López Martínez, Felipe López García, Ricardo Torres Barrera, Jesús Ernesto Leal Garza, and José Mauro Flores Garza (‘El Win’). The last figure was a high-ranking CDG local boss with ties to the Cadereyta Municipal Police. His faction was composed of active and formal police officers that carried out murders, kidnappings, drug dealing, and oil theft activities in the area.

The attack at the cockfighting arena was reportedly carried out by Ivan Peña Hernandez (‘El Peñitas), a former CDG members who left to join the CDN. About three months later, however, El Peñitas was killed outside of a car lot in Cadereyta.

Cadereyta is a hub for oil theft (huachicol) activities because it is home to the Cadereyta – Madero oil pipeline, which moves oil between Nuevo Leon and Tamaulipas. Cartels have been illegally extracting oil in this area for many years. The pipeline was created in 2002 and has a capacity of about 155,000 barrels per day.

In January 2020, gunmen attacked a drug rehabilitation clinic in Monterrey and injured two men. Although the incident was not widely reported in the Nuevo Leon media, it was later known that the clinic was owned by El Gero.

El Gero was once a subordinate of Agustin Jaime Gonzalez Garza, alias ‘El Viejo’ and/or ‘El Barbas’, the former plaza boss of the Gulf Cartel in the municipalities of Cadereyta, China, General Bravo, and Ramones.

Cadereyta is a strategic point for oil theft activities because there is a 488-kilometer (300 miles), 10-inch pipeline there that connects all the way to Ciudad Madero, Tamaulipas. The pipeline also connects internationally with one in Brownsville, Texas.

Sources: Valor Tamaulipeco (1); (2); SillaRota; Infobae; ABC Noticias; El Norte; ArgusMedia