1. Skip to navigation
  2. Skip to content
  3. Skip to secondary content



Blog del Narco: Drug Cartel Recruit Grandparents

Blog del Narco: Drug Cartel Recruit Grandparents

Photo: Drug Cartels Recruit Seniors

Click Here to Enlarge Photo

First it was the very young, then the children and now the elderly are prey to drug trafficking groups in Mexico.

More and more often it has been reported by authorities that elderly people are being included in arrests of drug cartel members.

During this six-year period, the share of older adults involved with organized crime has increased, as reported by the Attorney General’s Office. The ministry said that from December 2006 to November 2011, they have captured more than four thousand elderly members among the cartel ranks.

Jose Luis Prado Maillard, Director of the Faculty of Law and Criminology at the University of Nuevo Leon, said the drug cartels use of children and grandparents to be of an advantage for their businesses.


The precarious economic conditions of thousands of grandparents living in Mexico is the key to why many agree to work for the drug cartels. Also, lack of jobs for this sector of society is also a big issue.

” With respect to older adults and their involvement with the drug cartels, we have two factors: one is the economic conditions being experienced by the sector, and the lack of opportunity to receive an income that allows them to meet their basic needs.  They are offered profits from the sales of drugs and money for transportation. They are ideal because they have nothing to lose. The other aspect that we have, which is very important, is that despite the increase we see in the ranks of organized crime by older adults, the number is still down with people over age 60 who are involved in organizations because there is still a matter of ethical values, moral beliefs that keep them from not getting involved. Sometimes, their values are broken by the need to eat, to see for their health or simply to survive, “said Prado Maillar.

Read more at Blog del Narco in Spanish Here