ZAPATA, TEX. -- Falcon Lake is famous for its monster bass and for the maniacal obsession of the fishermen who come from all over Texas -- and the world -- to stalk them. Now this remote reservoir that straddles the international boundary is known for something else: pirates.In the past month, crews of outlaws in a small armada of banged-up skiffs and high-powered bass boats launched from the Mexican shore have ambushed bass anglers from the Texas side innocently casting their plastic worms over favorite spots. The buccaneers have struck in Mexican waters but within sight of the Texas shore. ......The pirates claim to be "federales," or police, but instead are brigands -- with the letter "Z" tattooed on their necks and arms -- from the notorious drug cartel Los Zetas. The Zetas are on a rampage of killing and extortion along the Mexican border as they fight gun and grenade battles against the military and the rival Gulf Cartel.
"Within the last month, with all the feuding going on over there, the dope smuggling has dropped off and it is starving them. This water is Zeta central. They controlled the whole lake. They distributed everything. Now they're desperate and diversifying," said Jose E. Gonzalez, the second in command of the Border Patrol's Zapata station, which operates an around-the-clock maritime patrol.Be sure you read it all here.