|Name Juan Guerra||Successor Juan Garcia Abrego|
Born July 18, 1915 (1915-07-18) Matamoros, Tamaulipas, Mexico
Other names Don Juan; El Padrino; El Padrino de Matamoros
Occupation Gulf Cartel leader and founder
Died July 12, 2001, Matamoros, Mexico
Cause of death Respiratory disease
Similar Pablo Acosta Villarreal, Rafael Aguilar Guajardo, Miguel Ángel Félix Gallardo
Juan Nepomuceno Guerra Cárdenas
Juan Nepomuceno Guerra Cárdenas (July 18, 1915 – July 12, 2001) was a Mexican crime lord, bootlegger, businessman and smuggler who founded the Gulf Cartel, a drug trafficking organization. He is often considered the "godfather" of U.S-Mexico border cartels.
Nepomuceno Guerra pictured on far left
He began his criminal career in the 1930s by smuggling alcohol from Mexico during the Prohibition in the United States. He later diversified to other cross-border smuggling activities. He is the uncle of Juan García Ábrego, once's Mexico's most-wanted man.
Early life and career
During the 1930s he began smuggling whisky across the Mexico-United States border through south Texas. Through shrewd political connections he had fostered, Nepomucena Guerra was able to control all the contraband moving across the Rio Grande. In the 1970s, his nephew Juan García Abrego began utilizing those connections and developed the organization into a drug cartel primarily dedicated to the more lucrative business of smuggling cocaine.
According to news sources, despite allegedly founding one of the largest drug cartels in Mexico, Juan Nepomuceno Guerra never spent more than "a few hours in jail" for his crimes.
On June 18, 2015, the Governor of Tamaulipas Egidio Torre Cantú inaugurated a street under his name, "Juan N. Guerra", in Reynosa, Tamaulipas.The street was inaugurated along with seven others and is located in the working-class neighborhood Reserva Territorial Campestre.