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Disrupting Support for a Drug Cartel

FILE - Men stand next to the wreckage of a tractor-trailer set ablaze by members of a drug cartel in Guadalajara, Mexico, May 1, 2015.
FILE - Men stand next to the wreckage of a tractor-trailer set ablaze by members of a drug cartel in Guadalajara, Mexico, May 1, 2015.

U.S. sanctions five Mexican businesses for support of Cartel de Jalisco Nueva Generacion.

The U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control, or OFAC, designated five Mexican businesses as Specially Designated Narcotics Traffickers pursuant to the Foreign Narcotics Kingpin Designation Act. These entities, designated in late September, provide financial support to and are controlled by Mexico’s Cartel de Jalisco Nueva Generacion, which OFAC designated earlier this year due to the cartel’s significant role in international narcotics trafficking.

Disrupting Support for a Drug Cartel
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As a result of the U.S. action, any assets these businesses may have under U.S. jurisdiction are frozen, and U.S. persons are prohibited from engaging in transactions with them.

The five businesses designated for providing financial support to the drug trafficking activities of the cartel are all located in the Mexican state of Jalisco, of which Guadalajara is the capital.

Mizu Sushi Lounge is a restaurant with locations in Puerto Vallarta and Guadalajara. Onze Black is a tequila business with offices in Guadalajara. Las Flores Cabanas is a cabin rental business located in Tapalpa, Jalisco. J & P Advertising and JJGON, an advertising company and an agricultural company, respectively, are both located in Guadalajara.

On April 8, 2015, OFAC designated the cartel, its close ally the Los Cuinis Drug Trafficking Organization, and their respective leaders and brothers-in-law, Nemesio Oseguera Cervantes also known as “Mencho”, and Abigael Gonzalez Valencia. Based on a Drug Enforcement Administration investigation in Los Angeles, a federal grand jury in the District of Columbia indicted them in March 2014 on several charges, including being the principal leaders of a Continuing Criminal Enterprise. Gonzalez Valencia was captured in Mexico in late February 2015, but Oseguera Cervantes remains a fugitive.

“[Cartel de Jalisco Nueva Generacion] has used widespread violence and corruption to become one of the most powerful drug trafficking organizations in Mexico,” said John E. Smith, Acting Director of OFAC.“

The variety of businesses designated today demonstrates the extent to which [it] has penetrated the economy, both locally and beyond. Office of Foreign Assets Control and its partners, including the Drug Enforcement Administration and Mexican authorities, are determined to expose and disrupt anyone supporting [Cartel de Jalisco Nueva Generacion].”