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Expert Says Authorities Could Use Cartel Communication Systems Against Them

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Posted: Jan 26, 2012 5:44 PM

Updated: Jan 26, 2012 7:49 PM

There's evidence the Mexican cartel could be raising their own red flags. Soldiers broke up another one of their radio communication systems. It all went down right across the border from Starr County.

We already know the cartel has been able to set up its own communication systems. Now we're learning setups like these could actually be helping law enforcement, too. Most of the technology is state-of-the-art. The cartel uses narco towers to stay in touch.

"It also seems to be professional gear. This is not something put together haphazardly," says Scott Stewart, vice president of tactical intelligence for geo political intelligence-based agency STRATFOR.

Stewart says the recent seizures are simply standard operating procedure for the military.

"If you're going to attack, you want to try to cut the opponent's ability to communicate," says Stewart.

Stewart also believes the same technology helping criminals could also give the Mexican military the upper hand.

"If you monitor them, not only can you figure out by using equipment where the people broadcasting it are from, but you can also figure out what they're saying," says Stewart.

Amateurs often forget to use encoders with radio systems like these. That mistake could allow the good guys to tap into secret cartel communications.

Many communication systems were busted during Operation Noreste. It's an aggressive campaign by the Mexican military going after criminal organizations in northern Mexico.

Topics: Communication, towers, cartels, zetas

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