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Report: Mexican drug cartel scouts living in the mountains of Phoenix

February 11, 2016  |  Posted by: JammedUp Staff
Report: Mexican drug cartel scouts living in the mountains of Phoenix

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An investigative reporter from an Arizona TV station discovered cartel-linked scout posts 40 miles south of the city of Phoenix.

The scouts use the mountain top points located in the Arizona desert, 100 miles north of the border, as lookout posts to warn drug trafficking mules who are trekking en route from Mexico of any law enforcement activity.

Morgan Lowe, who is an investigative journalist with CBS5AZ, made the discovery after riding through the area for a report along with a deputy sheriff.

Lowe and detective Eddie Castro, a deputy from the Pinal County Sheriff’s smuggling unit, witnessed trash disposed of by the cartel scouts littering the desert and pieces of carpet used to wrap the feet of “mules” or smugglers to avoid detection by law enforcement trackers.

“We see significant loads of Marijuana, cocaine, heroin, methamphetamine coming through this area,” Castro said.

He added, “we’ve been told as many as five to seven scouts, currently take up posts up in the mountainous hills.

The next day Lowe and his producer set out on foot to climb the terrain with video cameras and encountered a man in his 20’s dressed in camouflage near the summit.

The scout contained a scanner to monitor any operations by law enforcement along with a cell phone and a two-way radio.

Lowe told the lookout he wouldn’t take pictures; he was just a hiker enjoying the view.

The reporter said although he only saw one man, he did heard several voices and stressed: “We had to get out of there in a hurry.”

Lowe caught footage of the supplies covered with camouflage that the lookouts had stashed between boulders solar panels used to power their electronics and a makeshift cooking area hidden under an overhang.

The scout wanted to know if Lowe worked for Border Patrol, which he replied “No.”

During the report, Lowe then quickly made his way down the path and said he was “running for his life.”

Lowe said he didn’t witness if the man was armed, but wanted to distance himself from the observation post as much as possible — out of fear that the other cartel operatives would have ordered him held, or worse.

Law enforcement officials expressed shock to Lowe how far north these scouts have taken up positions.

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