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Mexican Cartel Tactical Note #37: Kidnapped SEIDO Intelligence Officers Appear in Cartel Video; Subsequently Found Murdered

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Mexican Cartel Tactical Note #37: Kidnapped SEIDO Intelligence Officers Appear in Cartel Video; Subsequently Found Murdered

John P. Sullivan and Robert J. Bunker

Two intelligence specialists from SEIDO (Subprocuraduría Especializada en Investigación de Delincuencia Organizada) within Mexico’s Attorney General’s office, the Procuraduría General de la República (PGR), were apparently captured by a criminal cartel.  The federal agents appear in a video being guarded by armed men in black who are suspected to be members of the Cártel Jalisco Nueva Generacion (CJNG).  The agents were believed to have been kidnapped while off duty near the borders of the states of Jalisco and Nayarit on 5 February 2018.  Human remains found in Xalisco, Nayarit on 15 February 2018 were suspected to belong to the agents.  After forensic identification the PGR confirmed the remains belonged to the agents on 18 February 2018.

Key Information:  Mark Stevenson, Associated PressMexico: 2 missing police probably held by drug cartel.” ABC News. 12 February 2018, http://abcnews.go.com/International/wireStory/mexico-missing-police-held-drug-cartel-53020287:

A chilling video apparently shows two kneeling, bound Mexican intelligence agents confessing supposed rights violations while surrounded by five masked gunmen pointing machine pistols and assault rifles at them.

A federal official who was not authorized to be quoted by name said Monday the two men in the video are apparently the two agents of the federal Attorney General’s Office who went missing Feb. 5 in the Pacific coast state of Nayarit.

The gunmen bear no identifying marks on their clothes, but Nayarit is dominated by the Jalisco New Generation Cartel…

…The video released over the weekend on social media was shocking in part because while corrupt local police have been taped “confessing” and being executed on video in the past, it has seldom happened to federal agents.

…In the script, the captured agents said “They (the captors) have always respected us as authorities, because they decided to do so, not because they couldn’t harm us” if they wanted to.

The gang appeared to claim it would capture more agents; the script continued “this will continue to happen to all of our colleagues from other agencies who do the same thing: steal, kidnap and rape hiding behind a government badge.”

Key Information: “Agentes de la PGR desaparecen en Nayarit y el CJNG los amenaza en VIDEO.” Zeta (Tijuana). 11 February 2018, http://zetatijuana.com/2018/02/agentes-de-la-pgr-desaparecen-en-nayarit-y-el-cjng-los-amenaza-en-video/:

Alfonso Hernández Villavicencio y Octavio Martínez Quiroz, elementos de la Agencia de Investigación Criminal (AIC), de la Procuraduría General de la República (PGR) desaparecidos en Nayarit, fueron secuestrados presuntamente por integrantes del Cártel Jalisco Nueva Generación (CJNG).

La PGR informó este domingo de la desaparición de los dos elementos quienes, en su día de descanso, acudieron un evento familiar el pasado 5 de febrero. Asimismo, a través de las diversas redes sociales comenzó a circular un video donde se ve a los dos agentes vistiendo una playera que dice SEIDO [Subprocuraduría Especializada en Investigación de Delincuencia Organizada].

En las imágenes se observa a Hernández Villavicencio y a Martínez Quiroz, hincados y con las manos por la espalda, mientras son amenazados por cuatro hombres con el rostro cubierto, quienes les apuntan con armas largas y los obligan a leer un mensaje.

Uno de los elementos de la AIC asegura en el video que se encuentran en Nayarit por órdenes de los titulares de la Secretaría de Gobernación (Segob), de la Defensa Nacional (Sedena) y de Marina (Semar).

Key Information: “El Cártel de Jalisco levanta a dos agentes de la SEIDO y los obliga a grabar video contra operativos antinarco.” Proceso. 11 February 2018, http://www.proceso.com.mx/522201/el-cartel-de-jalisco-levanta-dos-agentes-de-la-seido-y-los-obliga-grabar-video-contra-operativos-antinarco:

CIUDAD DE MÉXICO (proceso.com.mx).- Dos elementos de la Agencia de Investigación Criminal (AIC) fueron presuntamente levantados por integrantes del Cártel Jalisco Nueva Generación (CJNG) el pasado 5 de febrero en los límites entre Nayarit y Jalisco.

La PGR difundió las fichas de Octavio Martínez Quiroz, de 26 años, y Alfonso Hernández Villavicencio, de 28, adscritos a la Subprocuraduría Especializada en Investigación de Delincuencia Organizada (SEIDO).

Key Information: “LA PGR ADVIERTE QUE NO ESCATIMARÁ RECURSOS EN LA BÚSQUEDA DE AGENTES LEVANTADOS POR EL CJNG.” El Blog del Narco. 12 February 2018, https://elblogdelnarco.com/2018/02/12/la-pgr-advierte-no-escatimara-recursos-la-busqueda-agentes-levantados-cjng/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=twitter&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+Mundonarcocom+%28El+Blog+del+narco%29:

CIUDAD DE MÉXICO.- La Procuraduría General de la República (PGR) advirtió que no escatimará esfuerzos ni recursos en la búsqueda.

Y localización de los agentes Alfonso Hernández Villavicencio y OctavioMartínez Quiroz, quienes presumiblemente fueron privados de la libertad por gatilleros del Cártel de Jalisco Nueva Generación (CJNG),  Los dos policías federales adscritos a la Subprocuraduría Especializada en Investigación de Delincuencia Organizada (SEIDO).

Key Information: “VIDEO: PRESUNTOS FEDERALES ‘LEVANTADOS’ APARECEN EN VIDEO: Desaparecieron desde el pasado día 5 entre Nayarit y Jalisco.” HazClik.com. 11 February 2018, https://hazclik.com/56867-2/:

Domingo 11 de febrero.- Dos presuntos agentes del área de inteligencia de la Procuraduría General de la República (PGR) que fueron reportados como desaparecidos en los límites de Nayarit y Jalisco, aparecieron en un video donde son custodiados por sujetos armados.

Los dos agentes de nombres Octavio Martínez Quiroz (derecha) y Alfonso Hernández Villavicencio (izquierda), fueron enviados a realizar actividades de inteligencia a los límites de ambos Estados, donde se han registrado actividades delictivas.

El pasado 5 de febrero la dependencia perdió contacto con los dos elementos y la mañana de este domingo, se dio a conocer un video donde sujetos de negro, armados, los tienen sometidos y los obligan a leer un texto.

Hasta el momento se desconoce el paradero de los dos elementos y los operativos por localizarlos continúan.

N.B. -A video image is available at this site. The 2:39 minute video is also available at YouTube: https://youtu.be/gEwW6TIEHuI.

Key Information:  “Hallan cuerpos en Nayarit; serían de agentes de PGR.” La Silla Rota.  15 February 2018, https://lasillarota.com/pgr-seido-agentes-levantados-/205803:

La Procuraduría General de la República informó que fueron localizados restos humanos en municipio de Xalisco, Nayarit y los cuales podrían corresponder a los agentes que fueron levantados el pasado 5 de febrero por integrantes del Cártel Jalisco Nueva Generación.

Mediante su cuenta de Twitter la PGR informo que sobre los cuerpos por lo que ya se investiga si se trata de los dos agentes de la Agencia de Investigación Criminal que aparecieron en un video el fin de semana.  

Key Information: “Restos hallados en Nayarit son de los agentes desaparecidos: PGR.” Proceso. 18 February 2018, http://www.proceso.com.mx/523093/restos-hallados-en-nayarit-son-de-los-agentes-desaparecidos-pgr:

CIUDAD DE MÉXICO (proceso.com.mx).- La Procuraduría General de la República (PGR) confirmó que los restos humanos hallados en Nayarit hace unos días, corresponden a los dos agentes de esa dependencia desaparecidos desde el pasado 5 de febrero.

En un comunicado, la PGR informó que, derivado de los estudios de genética forense realizados por la Agencia de Investigación Criminal (AIC), a través de expertos en la materia de la Coordinación General de Servicios Periciales, se logró determinar que los cuerpos localizados en Xalisco, Nayarit pertenecen a Octavio Martínez Quiroz y Alfonso Hernández Villavicencio.

Analysis

While kidnappings (levantons) are near endemic in Mexico[1], kidnapping security officers is rare.  In this case, two federal agents assigned to anti-kidnapping (antisecuestro) duties in the AIC (Agencia de Investigación Criminal) were apparently kidnapped by cartel operatives believed to be associated with the Cártel Jalisco Nueva Generacion (CJNG).  The agents Octavio Martínez Quiroz, 26, and Alfonso Hernández Villavicencio, 28, were reported missing on Monday, 5 February 2018 while on vacation. [2] The agents are seen in a YouTube video that surfaced over the following weekend.[3] The agents “appear kneeling with their hands tied behind their backs while four armed men, faces covered, stand behind them holding firearms.”[4]

One of the captives, Hernández, read a message claiming agents from AIC and SEIDO were operating illegitimately with impunity to ““torture, steal, kidnap and make our targets disappear, without respect for women, children or the elderly.”[5] Corrupt police, working for drug cartels, have been implicated in kidnappings in several Mexican states.[6] These potentially coerced statements support a common narrative of  ‘social banditry’ where in cartels promote their own image as protectors or guardians of the people[7], for example “Mexican cartels frequently frame themselves as vigilantes, defenders of the common people and honest businessmen compared to their rivals and to the Mexican government, which they accuse of human rights abuses.”[8]

The area where the officers disappeared is contested by the CJNG and the Sinaloa Cartel.  This competition has led to increased violence in Jalisco, Colima, and Nayarit.[9] Continued violence, including direct confrontation with the Mexican state, is likely as the competition for control of the narco-state continues in the areas the CJNG seeks to dominate.  This violence is likely to include continued attacks on police and the military.  At the time the video was released the prospects for the captured agents were unknown and the video statement asserted that: “This will continue to happen to all of our colleagues from other agencies who do the same thing: steal, kidnap and rape hiding behind a government badge.” [10]

Captured SEIDO Agents and Heavily Armed Cartel Gunmen

Source: Screenshot of Video Released by CJNG (Suspected); 11 February 2018  [FOR PUBLIC DISTRIBUTION]

An analysis of the cartel propaganda video and the incident itself raised a number of questions concerning CJNG motivations for kidnapping the two Mexican federal agents and then having them engage in a coerced and scripted confession.  It isn’t yet known if this seizure (levanton) was opportunistic or directed by cartel leadership. Neither federal agent appearing in the video seemed to be injured with no cuts or bruises evident—in fact, they are wearing clean new white t-shirts (with SEIDO printed in black on them) and were well groomed. The intent was to show that they were being well cared for. At the same time, the kneeling and hands bound behind-the-back positions they were in—with four heavy armed cartel gunmen standing behind them—clearly signaled the danger of their predicament and the power of the cartel holding them.

The warning that more federal agents would be ‘captured’—framed in the narrative that such agents are the ‘bad guys’ engaging in kidnapping, robbery, and rape while CNJG are the ‘good guys’ protecting the local community—was likely meant to delegitimize criminal enforcement activities directed at the cartel in Nayarit while also warning the federal government to cease operations against it. Further, the video represented an escalation of cartel psychological operations (PSYOPS) being directed against the Mexican federal government. In the past, no cartel—not even Los Zetas—was brazen enough to disseminate a video containing captured federal agents being forced to make a coerced confession. This video was, in fact, is an outlier vis-à-vis past Mexican cartel behaviors and can be considered to exemplify insurgent behaviors that overtly seek to challenge sovereign state prerogatives. 

PGR México Tweet announcing that forensic DNA analysis determined that the human remains found are those of the missing SIEDO agents –18 February 2018.

Source: https://twitter.com/PGR_mx/status/965419030164074496.

At the time the video was released there were four potential outcomes concerning the fate of the federal agents: a) The agents could have been released unharmed; b) The agents could have continued to be held captive; c) The agents could have been killed in a new video and/or be body dumped (with/without a narcomanta); or d) The agents could have been rescued by federal police and/or military forces

We now know that the agents were murdered with their bodies mutilated, beheaded, dismembered, and dumped in the trunk of a car on the side of a road in Xalisco, Nayarit.  Their bodies were so mutilated that a field identification was impossible, requiring forensic assessment (DNA testing) by the Agencia de Investigación Criminal (AIC).[11]  The results of the forensic assessment were made public on 18 February 2018.  The found remains were those of the two agents in the video.[12]

This incident marks a significant escalation in the confrontation between the CJNG and the Mexican state.  While the hostage video is novel, this isn’t the first time the CJNG has been implicated in the kidnapping and murder of federal agents.  In 2013 two agents of the Federal Ministerial Police (Policía Federal Ministerial), René Rojas Márquez y Gabriel Quijados Santiago, were kidnapped by municipal police in Vista Hermosa, Michoacán and turned over to the CJNG.  During the search for their bodies found mass graves (fosas clandestinas) containing 77 bodies including two additional police officers and two military intelligence officers.[13] Mass graves (fosas clandestinas or narcofosas) and disappeared persons (desaparecidos) related to the narco-conflict are endemic in Mexico[14] and the situation is especially acute in Jalisco.[15] Recently mass graves have also been discovered in Nayarit.[16]

This incident has the potential to raise the stakes in the contest between the CJNG and the Mexican state following what is essentially tantamount to a CJNG declaration of war against the Mexican state (essentially becoming Mexico’s own “Kiki” Camarena moment).[17]

Significance: Cartels, CJNG, Confrontation with State, Kidnapping, Levantons, PGR, SEIDO

End Notes

[1] El Universal. “Secuestro en México, a un paso de récord, podría ser más alto que con Calderón.” Vanguardia. 28 November 2017, https://www.vanguardia.com.mx/articulo/secuestro-en-mexico-un-paso-de-record-podria-ser-mas-alto-que-con-calderon.

[2] “Jalisco cartel kidnaps two federal agents.” Mexico News Daily. 12 February 2018, https://mexiconewsdaily.com/news/jalisco-cartel-kidnaps-two-federal-agents/.

[3] The video is available on multiple media sources and at YouTube: “Agentes de la SEIDO son secuestrados por el CJNG,” https://youtu.be/gEwW6TIEHuI.

[4] “Jalisco cartel kidnaps two federal agents.” Mexico News Daily. 12 February 2018, https://mexiconewsdaily.com/news/jalisco-cartel-kidnaps-two-federal-agents/.

[5] Ibid. Manuel Espino Bucio. “Retiene grupo armado a policies federales.” El Universal. 12 February 2018, http://www.eluniversal.com.mx/nacion/seguridad/retiene-grupo-armado-policias-federales.

[6] See Christopher Sherman, Associated Press. “Police kidnappings are scarily common in Mexico.” Business Insider. 24 November 2015, http://www.businessinsider.com/police-kidnappings-are-scarily-common-in-mexico-2015-11Kidnappings and enforced disappearances by corrupt police have most recently been reported in Veracruz: Associated Press, “19 police in Mexican state charged in kidnappings, killings.” Washington Post. 8 February 2018, https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/the_americas/mexico-arrests-5-police-for-kidnapping-man/2018/02/08/6a53feee-0cea-11e8-998c-96deb18cca19_story.html?utm_term=.2afefbf98391 and in Estado Mexico (Edomex): Associated Press, “Mexico arrests 5 police for kidnapping man.” Fox News. 8 February 2018, http://www.foxnews.com/world/2018/02/08/mexico-arrests-5-police-for-kidnapping-man.html.  In Guerrero, the entire police force of Chilpancingo, the state’s capital, were relieved of duty after being suspected in the extrajudicial killings of local teenagers: “Entire police force removed from duty.” Mexico News Daily. 5 January 2018, https://mexiconewsdaily.com/news/entire-police-department-removed-after-murders/.

[7] For a discussion of ‘social banditry’ in Mexico’s drug wars, see John P. Sullivan. “Criminal Insurgency: Narcocultura, Social Banditry, and Information Operations.” Small Wars Journal. 3 December 2012, http://smallwarsjournal.com/jrnl/art/criminal-insurgency-narcocultura-social-banditry-and-information-operations.

[8] “‘This Will Continue’: Mexican Federales Resurface as Prisoners of Drug Cartel.” Sputnik. 13 February 2018, https://sptnkne.ws/gHdd.

[9] Manuel Espino Bucio. “Retiene grupo armado a policies federales.” El Universal. 12 February 2018, http://www.eluniversal.com.mx/nacion/seguridad/retiene-grupo-armado-policias-federales.

[10] “‘This Will Continue’: Mexican Federales Resurface as Prisoners of Drug Cartel.” Sputnik. 13 February 2018, https://sptnkne.ws/gHdd.

[11] The PGR announced that human remains potentially those of the kidnapped agents were found in Nayarit. The announcement at the PGR México Twitter feed (@PGR_mx) read “La #PGR informa que hoy fueron localizados en el estado de #Nayarit restos humanos, posiblemente pertenecientes a los dos agentes desaparecidos desde el día 5 de febrero, adscritos a esta Institución.” PGR México. 15 February 2015, 10:18 AM, https://twitter.com/PGR_mx/status/964202237500129280.  The PGR also announced that a forensic identification of the remains was necessary; “#PGRInforma que la Agencia de Investigación Criminal, a través de la Coordinación General de Servicios Periciales, trabaja en los estudios de genética forense con la finalidad de confirmar la identidad de los cuerpos encontrados.“ PGR México. 15 February 2018, 10: 47 AM, https://twitter.com/PGR_mx/status/964209612122595330.

[12] The PGR made the announcement at its PGR México Twitter feed (@PGR_mx).  The announcement read: “La #PGRInforma que derivado de los estudios de genética forense realizados por la @PGR_AIC, a través de la Coordinación General de Servicios Periciales, se logró determinar que los cuerpos localizados en Xalisco #Nayarit pertenecen a los agentes que desaparecieron el 5 de febrero.” PGR México. 18 February 2018, 6:53 PM, https://twitter.com/PGR_mx/status/965419030164074496.

[13] “Hallan cuerpos en Nayarit; serían de agentes de PGR.” La Silla Rota.  15 February 2018, https://lasillarota.com/pgr-seido-agentes-levantados-/205803 and Gustavo Castillo García y Javier Santos. “Agentes municipales confiesan homicidios y colaboración con la delincuencia organizada.” La Jornada. 9 November 2013, http://www.jornada.unam.mx/2013/11/09/politica/004n1pol.

[14] No one knows the exact number of mass graves (fosas clandestinas) or disappeared persons (desaparecidos) in Jalisco or Mexico as a whole.  In April 2017 Mexico’s Human Rights Commission (CNDH–Comisión Nacional de los Derechos Humanos) reported 30,000 persons missing under suspicious circumstances by the end of 2016 but those numbers did not include statistics from six states and are viewed as incomplete.  “Number of missing people in Mexico rises to 30,000 by end-2016.” Reuters. 6 April 2017, https://www.reuters.com/article/us-mexico-violence/number-of-missing-people-in-mexico-rises-to-30000-by-end-2016-idUSKBN1782XN.  In addition, CNDH registered 855 mass graves (with 1,548 corpses exhumed) from January 2007 through September 2016. Teresa Moreno. ‘CNDH: suman 32 mil 236 desaparecidos y 855 fosas.” El Universal. 7 April 2017, http://www.eluniversal.com.mx/articulo/nacion/seguridad/2017/04/7/cndh-suman-32-mil-236-desaparecidos-y-855-fosas.

[15] A good review on the situation in Jalisco is found at Periodismo de Investigación.  “Jalisco: se duplican desapariciones.” El Universal. 26 February 2017, http://interactivo.eluniversal.com.mx/2017/desaparecidos-jalisco/.

[16] Alma Paola Wong. “El infierno de las foisas Nayarit, la herencis de ‘El Diablo’.” Milenio. 31 January 2018, http://www.milenio.com/policia/infierno-fosas-nayarit-herencia-el_diablo-crisis-inseguridad-semefo-violencia-milenio_0_1113488657.html.

[17] CJNG has been known to engage in extreme violence against agents of the Mexican state, including shooting down a military helicopter and ambushing a state police convoying killing fifteen of its officers. See Joshua Phillip, “Mexico Police Unprepared for New Military Tactics From Cartels.” The Epoch Times. 6 May 2015, https://www.theepochtimes.com/mexican-drug-war-reaches-new-level-as-cartels-turn-to-military-style-attacks_1348151.html and John P. Sullivan and Robert J. Bunker, “Mexican Cartel Tactical Note #25: Ambush Kills 15; Injures 5 Police in Jalisco.” Small Wars Journal. 16 July 2015, http://smallwarsjournal.com/jrnl/art/mexican-cartel-tactical-note-25-ambush-kills-15-injures-5-police-in-jalisco.

Sources

Manuel Espino Bucio, “Retiene grupo armado a policies federales.” El Universal. 12 February 2018, http://www.eluniversal.com.mx/nacion/seguridad/retiene-grupo-armado-policias-federales

“El Cártel de Jalisco levanta a dos agentes de la SEIDO y los obliga a grabar video contra operativos antinarco.” Proceso. 11 February 2018, http://www.proceso.com.mx/522201/el-cartel-de-jalisco-levanta-dos-agentes-de-la-seido-y-los-obliga-grabar-video-contra-operativos-antinarco.

“Hallan cuerpos en Nayarit; serían de agentes de PGR.” La Silla Rota.  15 February 2018, https://lasillarota.com/pgr-seido-agentes-levantados-/205803.

“LA PGR ADVIERTE QUE NO ESCATIMARÁ RECURSOS EN LA BÚSQUEDA DE AGENTES LEVANTADOS POR EL CJNG.” El Blog del Narco, 12 February 2018, https://elblogdelnarco.com/2018/02/12/la-pgr-advierte-no-escatimara-recursos-la-busqueda-agentes-levantados-cjng/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=twitter&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+Mundonarcocom+%28El+Blog+del+narco%29.

“Restos hallados en Nayarit son de los agentes desaparecidos: PGR.” Proceso. 18 February 2018, http://www.proceso.com.mx/523093/restos-hallados-en-nayarit-son-de-los-agentes-desaparecidos-pgr.

Mark Stevenson, Associated PressMexico: 2 missing police probably held by drug cartel.” ABC News. 12 February 2018, http://abcnews.go.com/International/wireStory/mexico-missing-police-held-drug-cartel-53020287.

“VIDEO: PRESUNTOS FEDERALES “LEVANTADOS” APARECEN EN VIDEO: Desaparecieron desde el pasado día 5 entre Nayarit y Jalisco.” HazClik.com. 11 February 2018, https://hazclik.com/56867-2/.

For Additional Reading

John P. Sullivan, “Criminal Insurgency: Narcocultura, Social Banditry, and Information Operations.” Small Wars Journal, 3 December 2012.

John P. Sullivan, “Insurgencia Criminal: Narcocultura, Bandidos Sociales y Operaciones de Información.” Small Wars Journal, 4 November 2013.

John P. Sullivan and Robert J. BunkerMexico’s Criminal Insurgency: A Small Wars Journal-El Centro Anthology. Bloomington: iUniverse, 2012.

About the Author(s)

John P. Sullivan was a career police officer. He retired as a lieutenant with the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department. He is also an adjunct researcher at the Vortex Foundation in Bogotá, Colombia; a member of the Scientific Advisory Committee of the Global Observatory of Transnational Criminal Networks; a senior research fellow at the Center for Advanced Studies on Terrorism (CAST); a Global Fellow at Stratfor (2018); and an instructor at the Safe Communities Institute at the Sol Price School of Public Policy at the University of Southern California. He is co-editor of Countering Terrorism and WMD: Creating a Global Counter-Terrorism Network (Routledge, 2006) and Global Biosecurity: Threats and Responses (Routledge, 2010) and co-author of Mexico’s Criminal Insurgency: A Small Wars Journal-El Centro Anthology (iUniverse, 2011) Studies in Gangs and Cartels (Routledge, 2013). Most recently he co-edited The Rise of The Narcostate (Mafia States) (Xlibris, 2018). He completed the CREATE Executive Program in Counter-Terrorism at the University of Southern California and holds a Bachelor of Arts in Government from the College of William and Mary, a Master of Arts in Urban Affairs and Policy Analysis from the New School for Social Research, and a PhD from the Open University of Catalonia (Universitat Oberta de Catalunya) in Barcelona. His doctoral thesis was “Mexico’s Drug War: Cartels, Gangs, Sovereignty and the Network State.” His current research focus is the impact of transnational organized crime on sovereignty in Mexico and other countries.

Dr. Robert J. Bunker is an Adjunct Research Professor, Strategic Studies Institute, US Army War College and Adjunct Faculty, Division of Politics and Economics, Claremont Graduate University. He holds university degrees in political science, government, social science, anthropology-geography, behavioral science, and history and has undertaken hundreds of hours of counterterrorism training. Past professional associations include Distinguished Visiting Professor and Minerva Chair at the Strategic Studies Institute, U.S. Army War College; Futurist in Residence, Training and Development Division, Behavioral Science Unit, Federal Bureau of Investigation Academy, Quantico, VA; Staff Member (Consultant), Counter-OPFOR Program, National Law Enforcement and Corrections Technology Center-West; and Adjunct Faculty, National Security Studies M.A. Program and Political Science Department, California State University, San Bernardino, CA. Dr. Bunker has hundreds of publications including Studies in Gangs and Cartels, with John Sullivan (Routledge, 2013),  Red Teams and Counterterrorism Training, with Stephen Sloan (University of Oklahoma, 2011), and edited works, including Global Criminal and Sovereign Free Economies and the Demise of the Western Democracies: Dark Renaissance (Routledge, 2014), co-edited with Pamela Ligouri Bunker; Criminal Insurgencies in Mexico and the Americas: The Gangs and Cartels Wage War (Routledge, 2012); Narcos Over the Border: Gangs, Cartels and Mercenaries (Routledge, 2011); Criminal-States and Criminal-Soldiers (Routledge, 2008); Networks, Terrorism and Global Insurgency (Routledge, 2005); and Non-State Threats and Future Wars (Routledge, 2002).