On December 14, 2010, Border Patrol agent Brian Terry was killed in a gun battle between Border Patrol agents and members of a five-man cartel “rip crew,” which regularly made rounds through the desert along the U.S.-Mexico border looking for drug dealers to rob. The gun that the cartel member used to kill Terry was believed to be supplied by the U.S. government as part of the “fast and furious” operation to trace weapons. According to a FOX News exclusive report, the suspect accused of killing Terry, Heraclio Osorio-Arellanes, was arrested on Wednesday after being apprehended by a joint U.S.-Mexico law enforcement task force that included the Drug Enforcement Administration, U.S. Marshals and the Border Patrol Tactical Unit (BORTAC).
The suspect was apprehended at a ranch on the border of the Mexican states of Sinaloa and Chihuahua. U.S. authorities have said they will seek his extradition.
After Agent Terry was killed, Operation Fast and Furious was exposed. This was an operation led by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) in which the federal government allowed criminals to buy guns in Phoenix-area shops with the intention of tracking them once they made their way into Mexico. Of 2,000 guns, the agency lost track of some 1,400, two of which were found at the scene of Terry’s killing.
While one of the members of the “rip crew,” Jesus Rosario Favela-Astorga, still remains at large, four have been sentenced to jail in the U.S. Manual Osorio-Arellanes was sentenced to 30 years in federal prison after pleading guilty to first-degree murder in February 2014. Ivan Soto-Barraza and Jesus Sanchez-Meza were convicted by a federal jury of nine different charges, including first-degree murder and attempted armed robbery in October 2015. Rosario Rafael Burboa-Alvarez, accused of assembling the “rip crew,” was sentenced to 27 years in prison after striking a plea agreement with prosecutors.