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"Richard Berg Pontious," or Rick Berg, Mount Carmel High School alumni (1979), in what appears to be either a California Drivers License photo or an arrest mugshot, attributed online to being provided by Mexican law enforcement.

[Reflected News ~ Living By The Sword]

Rick Berg killed in Baja

Drug Smuggling and Human Trafficking Wins Apparently in the End

There are two accounts, one from July, 2010, and one from November, 2011. But it appears he’s very much dead.

07/18 (2010) UPDATE ON GRINGO EXECUTED IN ROSARITO BEACH

(From: http://www.marjorieanndrake.com/2010/07/0717-violence-tijuana-first-car-bomb.html)

UPDATE/EDIT 07/18 @ 11:23AM: Note: At 10:55AM none of the other Mexican news sources have covered this story yet. El Mex dates their coverage yesterday, however the story did not appear until this morning. The protocol is generally when an American is executed and being watched by authorities on both sides of the border the information of the death is disclosed first to the American authorities who may or may not release the information to the US press. The Mexican press will as a rule of thumb, sit on the story until the US press picks it up.

– At K30 in the La Barca area of Rosarito Beach according to El Mex, 49 year old American citizen Richard Berg Pontious was executed yesterday morning in front of his house. He was pulled from his house by an unknown number of men believed to be in two vehicles and shot three times although six casings were found at the scene. The attackers also attempted to burn down his house which was unsuccessful. Pontious was involved in at least human smuggling, in front of his house were two pangas adapted with benches for transporting people.

Pontious had a long prior arrest record in the States for two counts of vehicle theft, other charges on theft and attempted robbery. He had been imprisoned in San Diego for two years on the charges of drug trafficking. This year he had been detained by the PGR of Mexico on the charge of rape, however Pontious posted bail and was out on the streets of Rosarito Beach continuing to lead a life of crime.

According to the Ministerial Police Commander, Pontious had lived in Rosarito for the past eight years, his murder is related to organized crime and will be investigated on that level.

EDIT AND correction: Pontious was detained by the PGR for suspected human smuggling and released on bail. Fulano the nazi was quick to point out my error, and I apologize. In my haste this morning I misread the article. OOPS ! First mistake in almost four years ! The second mistake I made was to allow Linton er…Fulano the nazi to comment on this blog for months and for that I will be forever sorry.

Just a note, you might recall several months back the Army operation in this area (there have been several) where the Army blocked off the streets in the La Barca area and were reviewing houses on the east side of the main boulevard. Just a bit further south on the east side was where one of El Teo’s mansions stood.

Here is the El Mex article with a pic of Pontious’s house:

TEXT

Here is the San Diego Union coverage which was also dated yesterday, but was published today. The Trib mentions Pontious had six pangas, which differs from the report from El Mex:

TEXT

UPDATE/EDIT @ 11:00pm: Neither AFN nor Frontera reported this story today.

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BajaNews
Super Moderator
**********
Posts: 1371
Registered: 12-11-2005
Member Is Offline
posted on 7-18-2010 at 05:14 PM Reply With Quote
U.S. man living in Baja killed

http://www.signonsandiego.com/news/2010/jul/17/us-man-living-baja-killed/

 

(from http://forums.bajanomad.com/viewthread.php?tid=46788)

By Sandra Dibble
July 17, 2010

A 49-year-old U.S. citizen was found shot to death outside his motor home south of downtown early Saturday. The victim, identified as Richard Berg Pontious, was born in Oklahoma and had lived in Baja California for several years, authorities said.

The man lived near the Baja Film Studios and neighbors there told police they heard gunshots at about 4 a.m. The man’s body was found shortly after 7 a.m. and authorities found cartridges from a 9mm handgun at the scene, they said.

No arrests had been made by late Saturday. Authorities said they were looking into the victim’s contacts and means of support.

A spokesman for the Baja California Attorney General’s Office said the victim owned a half-dozen small fishing boats, or pangas. The man had a U.S. criminal record and was sentenced to 24 months in a federal prison following an arrest on marijuana sales and smuggling charges, Mexican officials said.

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US Citizen Living in Rosarito Murdered

(From: http://fulanofiles.blogspot.com/2010_07_11_archive.html)

49-year old Richard Berg Pontious, a US citizen originally from Oklahoma, was found shot in the door of his home at kilometer 39 on the Scenic Highway between Tijuana and Ensenada. Neighbors reported hearing shots around 4 a.m. and Pontious’ body was found around 7 a.m. Six spent pistol cartridges were found inside his home. A spokesman for the Baja California Attorney General’s Office said Pontious had a prior criminal record for robbery and car theft. He also spent two years in federal prison in the US for trafficing in drugs and smuggling persons. The spokesman also said that Pontious owned a half-dozen fishing pangas.

Hmmmm. Fishing pangas? Like the ones that are bringing up illegal immigrants from Mexico and landing on San Diego County beaches?

Empty boat and lifejackets wash ashore in Pacific Beach

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Baja California News:
http://snipurl.com/2113c6c (Shortcut to Google News)
Tropical Weather:
http://www.nhc.noaa.gov – http://www.ssd.noaa.gov – http://www.weatherunderground.com/tropical
Earthquakes:
http://earthquake.usgs.gov/eqcenter/recenteqsww/Maps/region/N_America.php

The Perpetrators of the Killings in Tijuana
Wednesday, November 9, 2011 | Borderland Beat Reporter Buggs
http://www.borderlandbeat.com/2011/11/perpetrators-of-killings-in-tijuana.html

Posted in the BB Forum by Texcoco

“La Rana” and “El Cuervo” vs. “La Rosy” and El CAF

Alleged Arellano Felix Cartel assassins, allied with “Los Guichos” are killing retail drug dealers from “La Rana”, an operator of the Sinaloa Cartel and brother of “El Achilles”. The internal struggle for territory and local sale of narcotics begins once again. Rosarito Police linked detainees from November 1 to 11 homicides.

ZETA Investigation
The history of organized crime in Baja California was rewritten from the arrest of the Arellano Felix cartel lieutenants in 2010. The new members of drug gangs in Tijuana, are from a lower-level in the criminal structure, but moved up from the arrest of Teodoro Garcia Simental, “El Teo”.

They work for Fernando Sanchez Arellano, who has not been arrested, and also for the representatives of the Sinaloa cartel in Baja California. They betray one another, they worked in one area and then another. They inherited the impunity and the service of the police force.

One of those arrested this week, had in his vehicle a bullet cartridge linked to a murder 15 days ago. They don’t even bother to cover their tracks anymore. They are aware that the lag on investigation on organized crime, drug trafficking and drug dealing, will favor them.

The disorganization of the narcomenudistas and their struggles for territory to sell drugs, has produced a series of executions occurred in recent weeks. The structure is complicated by the accumulation of illicit busyness, but it has been set as follows:

During September 2011, retail drug dealers at the service of “Los Guichos” were kidnapped. In exchange for their lives, they had to act against the interests of the brothers Arteaga and / or Arzate, nicknamed “El Achilles” and “La Rana”.

At that time, and from May 2011, when Hector Eduardo Guajardo Hernandez “El Guicho” was capture these criminals had worked for Rene Arteaga and / or Arzate “La Rana”, but under the orders of “La Rosy”, sister of “El Guicho” and will pay derecho de pizo or tax directly to “El Cuervo,” Arteaga’s right hand men, identified as Jeova Israel Ilhuicatzi Morales. According to reports from the Security Council, Jeova is the brother of Edgar Rene an active Tijuana municipal police assigned to the area of​La Gloria, the same area his brother controls.

The official story is that “El Cuervo” is 34 yrs old, by the time he was 22 he already had three warrants for his arrest. In addition, his accomplices have identified him as perpetrator of dozens of deaths, to become this week as the most wanted killer.

IJeova Israel Ilhuicatzi, “El Jeo”, “Jeova” o “El Cuervito” had already been arrested. On March 26, 2010 he was apprehended for carrying a firearm, but he was granted bail by the Thirteenth District Court.

He was taken to La Mesa, after being captured by the municipal police on Sanchez Taboada St. The officers said the vehicle seemed suspicious, a Silverado pickup truck with California plates. They stop him and found three loaded guns. “El Cuervo” was arrested with Ever Tavares Félix and Juan Manuel Félix, they were released three days later.

The people arrested on November 1 told the authority that his crime boss was “La Rana”, but an opposed group had kidnapped them a week earlier and demanded the names and locations of drug dealers working for “La Rana”.

“We know that people from Tijuana is killing vendors working for ‘La Rana’ in Rosarito,” said one of those captured. While another one said:”Some days ago he was approached by people from ‘El Ingeniero’ (Fernando Sanchez Arellano) they ask for information because they were gonna start killing people working for ‘El Sapo’.

An investigator reported: that Rosa Hernández Guajardo, sister of ‘El Guicho’, was operating with the Arzate with no problems until a family member got killed (Roberto Ruiz Santos on July 13, 2011 in Rosarito) . People from Sinaloa started hitting him in Rosarito and there are indications that he sought an alliance with other groups to protect themselves, it appears that it was with people from the Arellano Felix.”

The same informant elaborated on the current killers:
“The information gathered will point to drug dealers and killers from the Barrio Logan in San Diego, which we originally identified as working for Melvin Gutierrez, but it is weird that they will be attacking drug dealers working for Rene Arteaga, because as far as the information goes,”El Melvin’ moves wholesale and retail, all the drugs he receives from ‘El Achilles’ Arteaga”

Precisely in regard to the sicarios working for CAF on Thursday, November 3, the Attorney General of the State (PGJE) presented John Manuel León Rodríguez “El Sica” arrested by the state police in. The 21-year-old is originally from Tijuana, and he is wanted for his alleged involvement in the murder of Bernardo Lopez Ceballos on October 12 in Otay Mesa.

According to the PGJE, the murder was perpetrated in the company of Rubén Avelino González Rodríguez, captured in recent days by the state police, and whom Leon Rodriguez referred to as the person who was in charge. In turn, this person will worked for “El Lic” an operator of “El Ingeniero”.

At a press conference, Deputy Attorney of Organized Crime, Abel Garcia Galvan said that over the past two years Leon Rodriguez worked for the criminal cell of “El Lic” as a pointer or as a “hawk” and he would look around to make sure police was not patrolling the area or places where they will commit a murder.

Juan Carlos Flores Mendoza, Deputy of the PGJE in Tijuana, said: “El Sica ‘ will also commit robberies of convenience stores and banks, receiving a weekly payment of $ 500 dollars and an ounce of crystal meth for resale, reason why he had two arrest warrants against him. ”

During the presentation, Leon Rodriguez told the media that the criminal previously had been imprisoned for crimes of theft, conspiracy, before he used to work as a disc jockey in Rosarito and had begun to steal to support his two year old daughter.

They were after El Tecolote.
“The truth is that the dead, and the killers, all belonged to ‘El Guicho’s’ group but when Guicho got arrested the group fragmented, some went to work for (Sinaloa Cartel), others with the CAF and about three cells want to be independent but they are getting attack by the cartels, “said an investigator from Rosarito.

A month ago, the Ministry of Public Security launched a state investigation for allegations of threats of kidnapping, extortion and collection of pizo ( drug tax ), all related to the group captured in El Tecolote. More than nine criminal cells were detected.

This week the police had begun monitoring the most active group of drug dealers, precisely that of the men who went to the delegation of La Gloria to kill a criminal associate, Omar Acuña Parra, because “he owed money to ‘La Rana’.”

Héctor Manuel Gastélum Díaz, the companion of Acuña, was arrested and delivered to the PGJE, given statements link him to retail sale of drugs and murder.

In the case of state agents monitoring this thugs, it was a group of unarmed police who immediately reported the incident to the armed police. An immediate reaction team of the municipal police coordinated the operating forces in less than three minutes of receiving the emergency call with the description of the car, municipal police began chasing the thugs while they were shooting.

Guided by the municipal police, the armed forces of PEP cough up to the criminals face to face, causing a more violent reaction. A shooting from both sides started, on the Cuchumá st in colonia Camino Verde, being wounded Héctor Flores Jurado “El Pitufo”, arrested with Juan Manuel Bocanegra Fortanel “El Juanillo” by the State Preventive Police. Supported by a helicopter the PEP, was after the driver of the vehicle who ran on foot. Minutes later, Antonio Serrano Cuellar “El Toño” was arrested.

Confessions
When interviewed on November 1, they all spoke, and began by identifying Rene Arteaga “La Rana” and Jehovah in Jeova Israel Ilhuicatzi Morales “El Cuervo” but they also identify their leader “responsible for giving orders,” Hector Urrea Garcia, who was killed on Saturday October 29 in Popotla, Rosarito.

” That’s why we went to Popotla on Sunday (October 30), to kill the guy who put him up, we shot a group in a black Mustang and a white Pathfinder.” The dead were Omar Cortes and Richard Alan Berg.

Urrea was wanted for murders committed by the group of “El Guicho” led by José Francisco Villa Padilla “El Villa” (arrested by the Army in May 2011).

The other head of the group was identified as Ivan Rodriguez, who they claimed, works as a taxi driver in Rosarito. The next day, November 2, a taxi driver officially identified as Alfredo Alva, was killed in the fifth municipality.

Cuellar Serrano, the one who drove the car in the attempted of murder of Acuña Parra (injured by three bullets and arrested in Tijuana General Hospital) in El Tecolote, talked about his recruitment, saying he was forced to work for organized crime because he had a debt of 10 thousand dollars, he had allegedly purchased and consumed crystal meth. He could not pay, so they offered him to work as the driver for the first of November, and he will no longer owe anything.

Manuel Bocanegra, the one who fired his weapon at Acuna, admitted of being a murderer and drug dealer with one year of experience, and said he has worked for “La Rana” and “El Cuervo”. He explained that the husband of the sister of the wife of Hector Flores “El Pitufo” always commit crimes with him. He also explain they never have any equipment with them.

“Before and after each job, they give us and take back the guns and cars, the place were we get and return the equipment is at the entrance of Rosarito at a gas station,” he said regarding to the​operation, in La Gloria, El Tecolote and all over Rosarito the other deaths and charges.

“El Juanillo ‘and’ El Pitufo ‘enter the Seven Eleven at the entrance of Rosario and they accused Flores and Bocanegra as the ones responsible for the murders at the entrance of Rosarito on October 11 2011.

The dead were Antonio Chavez, “The Tony” Ramón Guerrero “El Grande”, Ramon “owed over 100 thousand pesos in drugs” to Arzate, so they killed him.

The woman who accompanied them said that their friends had been killed by a group who arrived in another car and shot at them, but a video of the area showed that the killers came in the same car with the ones who got killed and they fled on foot after the murder, the killers also knew the female.

In addition to the confessed murders, the Rosarito Ministerial link them to 11 more homicides that occurred in recent months, with impunity the thugs used the same weapons and vehicles for their crimes.

In the vehicle seized from the criminals, experts located a spent shell that corresponded to the 9mm pistol used to take the life of Moses Gwendal Sewell III, on 26 October in the municipio de playa. The victim had told his accomplices that he had problems “with the people of Tijuana.”

With the same gun they killed in Tijuana, on April 18, Manuel Navarro, Carlos Velasquez, Alma Urrutia and Diana Godinez, in Colonia El Nino also Tapia Gustavo Moreno on September 22, and an unknown 45 years person on a country road to Ejido Lázaro Cárdenas on September 30.

“Los Guichos ‘are fighting for the territory of Rosarito and the outskirts of Tijuana, they are killing each other with the help from the Sinaloa Cartel and the Arellano, ” an investigator said that the efforts to combat the violence by this internal struggle are concentrated in the capture of “El Eder”, “Obrayan” and the taxi driver Ivan Rodriguez, above all the red lights are placed on the head of IJeova Israel Ilhuicatzi Morales “El Cuervo”.

Against detainees and fugitives of this criminal cell, the Office of Special Investigations into Organized Crime (SIEDO) raised charges of attempted manslaughter, while the Deputy Rosarito requested an arrest warrant for 11 murders.

However, up to now, there is no arrest warrant against the chief, René Arzate and / or Arteaga “La Rana”.

The present investigation mention that “El Achilles” forwarded information to the State Security Council through infiltrators, stating that he was dedicated to the wholesale of drugs, separated from the killings in the coastal area. The one who ordered the deaths, according to the arrested men, it was his right hand men, “La Rana”.

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