“Char” for Borderland Beat 

This article was translated and reposted from INFOBAE 

There are at least three drug traffickers at the highest level of the Beltran Leyva family (OFAC).
The Treasury Department’s most recent announcement against organized crime in Mexico revealed important details about the Beltran Leyva cartel, from its top leaders to its ties to Rafael Caro Quintero’s family.
Among the main details included in the OFAC sanction is the identity of Oscar Manuel Gastelum Iribe, identified as the top leader of the organization under the aliases ‘El Músico’ and ‘Salgado’.
The alias was previously known thanks to narcocorridos such as Chapo Isidro Mentado, by Edgardo Núñez. The song, narrated from the perspective of Fausto Isidro Meza Flores, alias ‘El Chapo Isidro’, refers that the criminal leader owes respect to a character known as ‘El Músico’, whose official identity was unknown until now.
Born on October 5, 1974, in Jalisco, Gastelum Iribe had maintained a low profile that allowed him to establish himself as a drug trafficking supervisor from Colombia to the United States, passing through the states of Quintana Roo, Chiapas, Oaxaca, Guerrero, and Sinaloa.
Fausto Isidro Meza Flores, operator of the Beltran Leyva Cartel (Photo: fbi.gov)
The alias by which Beltrán Leyva’s top leader is known refers precisely to his incursion into the artistic world, as unofficial versions point to him as a composer of narcocorridos.
Platforms such as Apple Music, Amazon, and even YouTube have records of the participation of Óscar Manuel Gastelum Uribe with different interpreters of regional Mexican music.
Sergio Vega, La Arrolladora Banda el Limón de René Camacho, Los Huracanes del Norte and Relámpago Musical are some of the projects with which this man, who apparently would be ‘El Músico’, has collaborated.
The Beltrán Leyva scheme identified by OFAC places Gastelum Iribe as the owner of Editorial Mercado Ecuestre S.A. de C.V., a company dedicated to publishing newspapers and magazines.
(Photo: OFAC)
In addition, in digital platforms, there are records that ‘El Músico’ owns Los Profetas del Norte, a company that specializes in the organization of events and entertainment services.
In the corrido that bears his name, the group Los del Cerro describes Gastelum Iribe as “humble,” but “he can be very angry if you make him mad.
Although the song in his honor says that “he likes guns, but not for killing,” the US State Department lists him as a notoriously violent trafficker with indictments in the District Courts of Illinois, California, and Columbia. He is also noted as a close associate of Jose Gil Caro Quintero, who is revealed to be a cousin of Rafael Caro Quintero.