According to officials in both the U.S. and Mexico, U.S. law enforcement agencies have been able to increase their number of informants in Mexico in order to gain additional knowledge of the drug cartels south of the border.
Officials have reportedly said information from said informants have led to the capture or death of around two dozen drug traffickers.
The New York Times has reported that over the last two years, Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) agents developed several “highly-placed confidential sources” who have access to those in “command and control” of the Gulf and Los Zetas cartels.
Informants have been able to track a number of cartel members suspected of being involved in the February murder of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agent Jaime Zapata, who is believed to have been killed by members of the Zetas cartel.
Though authorities point to the captures and deaths of cartel members as benefits of the information received from these informants, many question the ethics of using them, as most have turned informant in exchange for leniency or forgiveness of charges against them.