The Treasury Department, Office of Foreign Assets Control, announced this week that “Los Zetas” has been added to the Specially Designated Nationals (SDN) watch list, pursuant to the Foreign Narcotics Kingpin Designation Act regulations (SDNTK).
The Zetas have evolved into one of Mexico’s most ruthless death squads. Law enforcement officials suspect Zeta involvement in criminal acts in various U.S. states including in Arizona, Alabama, Florida, Georgia, and Texas. If you thought human decapitation was just a thing for Middle East terrorists, think again – the Zetas may hold the beheadings record in the Western Hemisphere.
The OFAC designation of Los Zetas, the Sinaloa Cartel, and the “La Familia Michoacana to the SDN watch list should make it harder for these entities to operate with the assistance of U.S. persons, corporations, and financial institutions or service companies that provide money wire transfer services.
U.S. persons are prohibited from engaging in any transaction or
dealing in property or interests in property of people and entities added to the SDNTK watch list. The ban affects trade transactions as well as accounts, securities, and other assets.
The investigations that led to these recent additions to the SDN watch list started during the Bush Administration. The Obama Administration should keep the pressuring on terrorists and drug kingpins in the Americas. It should seriously explore adding inviduals and groups in Ecuador, Bolivia, and Nicaragua; as well was designating Venezuela a haven for terrorists and drug lords.