A Cartel Kidnapped a Man in Texas After He Bragged About Stealing $50K From Them

Erik Taddeo Ramírez was taken by armed men from his residence in Laredo, Texas to Mexico, court documents say.
The Puente International Bridge in Mexico across which Erik Taddeo Ramírez was taken after he was kidnapped from his home in Texas. Photo by Salwan Georges/The Washington Post via Getty Images.

A man was kidnapped by a Mexican drug cartel from his house in Texas two hours after bragging about stealing $50,000 from them. 

Erik Taddeo Ramírez from Laredo, Texas, was allegedly kidnapped by members of the Cartel del Noreste— a powerful criminal organization—and was taken to Mexico where he is still missing, according to court documents.

The kidnapping happened a few minutes after midnight on March 24, when a group of men, allegedly belonging to the Cartel del Noreste, arrived at this house in a blue pick-up truck in the Texas border city of Laredo. 


The men, all wearing masks and carrying guns, stormed the house and grabbed Ramírez. From there, they went to  the port of entry and crossed the border into Nuevo Laredo, Mexico. Before crossing, Ramírez tried to escape but was unsuccessful, according to the formal complaint.

“The (security cameras) video recording showed a male with blood on his face open the front passenger door of the blue Dodge Ram four-door pick-up truck in distress while the blue Dodge Ram four door pick-up truck was in motion. Officers at the bridge stated the male was attempting to exit the blue Dodge Ram four door pick-up truck and was pulled back into the blue Dodge Ram four door pick-up truck by force,” court documents say. 

Hours later, Ramírez’s girlfriend and sister called the police to report the kidnapping. Witnesses told the police that the night of March 24, Ramírez had a phone call with an unknown woman to whom he bragged about having stolen $50,000 from the Cartel del Noreste. Ramírez allegedly told the woman on the phone that he was in Laredo and “that he was not in danger or afraid of the unknown female because he was in the United States.” 

Days later, on March 27, U.S. authorities arrested Jonathan Cavriales, an alleged member of the Cartel del Noreste, at the same port of entry connecting Nuevo Laredo in Mexico with Laredo, Texas, as Cavriales tried to get back into the U.S. driving the same pick-up truck used to kidnap Ramírez, official documents show. 


Cavriales told the officers that he “was aware that the victim had stolen approximately $50,000 from the Cartel del Noreste.” Cavriales was denied bond release and got charged with kidnapping, according to court documents. 

The rest of the men involved in the kidnapping remain at large. Ramírez is still missing. 

On March 5th, four U.S. citizens were kidnapped and two of them killed shortly after crossing the Texas border into Mexico. The Americans reportedly arrived in the border city of Matamoros, Tamaulipas where gunmen unloaded a hail of bullets on their vehicle.

Video of the aftermath of the assault, which took place in broad daylight, showed armed men forcing a woman into the back of a white pick up truck. The other three Americans are dragged by the men and loaded into the back of the same truck.

Two of them were found deceased a day later inside an abandoned shed in the outskirts of Matamoros, while the other two were found alive and were sent to a hospital in the U.S. on the same day.