December 6th, 2010
03:05 PM ET

'I slit their throats,' accused teen hit man says

CNN Wire Staff

A 14-year-old accused of ruthless killings on behalf of a Mexican drug cartel boss faced a battery of questions from reporters after authorities detained him. And he answered, point-blank, as camera flash bulbs flickered.

"I slit their throats," he said, describing what he said was the killing of four people.

The teen told reporters after his capture Thursday night that he was an orphan who joined the Pacifico Sur drug cartel when he was 12. He said Julio "El Negro" Padilla, one of the group's alleged leaders, threatened him.

"I either work or he'll kill me," the 14-year-old said.

Analysts say the case offers a glimpse into Mexican drug gangs, which are increasingly recruiting youth to help with their turf battles.

"This won't be the last time we hear stories of young children picking up arms and killing people because it pays, and because they think it's cool," said Sylvia Longmire, a former U.S. Air Force officer and senior intelligence analyst specializing in Latin America and Mexico's drug war.

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Filed under: 360° Radar • Mexico
soundoff (2 Responses)
  1. Pam robair

    This boy is doing something new that is making News? Come on! Look at all these kids in Liberia, suffering from the war that we would not stop? why do u keep turning a blind eye to this country? Why is this Mexican boy getting so much attention? Shame on you! America owe's the Liberian children their say too!

    December 6, 2010 at 10:17 pm |
  2. Bruce M.McLaughlin

    Well, it's sad to have to say this, but if these kids are going to live this lifestyle because of the pay and it's "Cool", then Law Enforcement has to do what is necessary if they are confronted by a kid and he/she's got a weapon.

    If they want to act like adults then they should be treated as such.

    "Take no Prisoners"

    December 6, 2010 at 6:31 pm |