By ACI for Borderland Beat
For Part 1 click here
For Ibarra story click here
Jack stared at the screen, some joke he thought. Jack had been living a good life after receiving his reward. He dismissed the email and went about his day. Jack was what some might call a con. He had an affectionate relationship with gambling. When he lived in New York he would often gamble at Israeli run parking lots, stacking cards, dealing from the bottom, fleecing the naive and proud. He knew people, he could read them, but that was of little help when reading email. Jack was also adapt at the slow con, which given his terrible anxiety, seems out of place. He never left a room with out some sorted collection of benzos to battle it. But that is a story for another time.
Ivan couldn't believe his predicament. The DEA fucked him. He wished he could kill every single one of them. Why did they do this to him? He did his fucking job, he raged, how dare they? He led them right to the bastard and they leave him with nothing. Fuck them he thought. He was counting on that money. They seized millions in assests and he’d planned on getting a piece, what the fuck happened? Those filthy, lying thieves took it all for themselves. Now he was fucked, leveraged to the hilt, it felt like the whole world was falling down around him. If he didn't get cash soon he would be in too deep to get out and he knew it.
One night while drinking beers and surfing the web he came across a website. It talked about a man who fought the Canadian reward system and won. As the buzz from the Modelo settled in, his anger stewed. Fuck the DEA, all they did was lie, cheat and steal from me, maybe Canada would be different? He didn't know this guy but he was desperate and a little drunk. This was one hell of a risk, he had no idea what would happen. As the beer bottles began to pile up, he sent an email. It was then he began talking to a man named Jack.
Ivan originally thought Jack was Canadian and that he could somehow help get Ivan a reward. He began by sending information on a man Ivan claimed was major player in Canada. Jack still thought he was dealing with some nutcase, he had no idea this man Ivan was in fact the man he claimed to be. But the emails persisted, after a while Jack began listening to Ivan with less skepticism.
Jack would learn that Ivan was part of a tangled web of connections, wealth, narcos and of course greed and betrayal. Ivan came from a well known and famously connected family. His grandfather was a high ranking associate of a previous President. A symbol of what is wrong in Mexico. He was what some “analysts” might call a kingmaker of druglords. But to say that isn't correct. He wielded less power than one would think. He simply met with people and talked to his friends, making deals over champagne and caviar. He would listen to any offer, and offers were rarely denied, the unlucky simply got screwed over. This is the game which is played. He was still a puppet to those beyond him but that wasn't the way he saw it. And even if he was he didn't care, ego blinds many men.
This story is more about a man who tired to play all sides, using his connections to broker deals. He claimed he was independent, working alone and that he would work for anyone willing to pay. He played for both the Sinaloa Cartel and Los Zetas. This put him in the odd position of having more knowledge than one would think logical. Even more confounding was that he was able to live knowing such things. He was also courting the DEA, which made the game Ivan played appear even more foolish.