rd collection of AP stories

Five Indicted In Cult Slayings

   MEXICO CITY (AP) - The reputed high priestess of a drug-trafficking
religious cult was being held without bond Tuesday after she and four
other men were indicted on charges stemming from the ritual slayings of
15 people.

   Indicted by Judge Bernardo Tirado on murder and related charges were
Sara Aldrete Villarreal, Omar Francisco Orea Ochoa, Alvaro de Leon
Valdez, Juan Carlos Fragoso and Jorge Montes.

   Tirado refused to set bail Monday because the charges are punishable
by more than five-year sentences. Murder conviction carries a 50-year

   Ms. Aldrete, 24, and her Cuban-American boyfriend Adolfo de Jesus
Constanzo were considered leaders of the cult, with Ms. Aldrete the
priestess and Constanzo the godfather.

   The case broke last month when Mexican police discovered the first of
15 bodies buried at the Matamoros ranch. Ms. Aldrete has testified that
some of the victims were killed in ritual sacrifices and the deaths of
others were related to drugs.

   One of the sacrificial victims was Mark Kilroy, 21, a university
student from Santa Fe, Texas.

   Ms. Aldrete, de Leon Valdez and Orea Ochoa were arrested May 6 in a
fourth-floor apartment in Mexico City after a gunfight with police.

   As police closed in Constanzo, 26, ordered his companions to kill him
and his closest associate, Martin Quintana Rodriguez, according to

   De Leon Valdez told authorities he shot them to death with a
submachine gun. Ms. Aldrete and Orea Ochoa also are charged in the

   Orea Ochoa, Fragoso and Montes are accused of killing Ramon Baez, a
male transvestite, in a Mexico City apartment in July and dismembering
the body.

   Court clerk Marco Aurelio Camacho said all five defendants were
charged with homicide, two counts of criminal association, coverup and
resisting arrest.

   Another defendant, Jose Enrique Calzada, was charged Sunday with
coverup for allegedly helping Constanzo and other cult members avoid
arrest. He pleaded innocent at his arraignment and was released on
$2,500 bond.

   AP-NY-05-16-89 0935EDT
   (C) Copyright 1988, Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.


Ballad About Slayings Aired

   BROWNSVILLE, Texas (AP) - The story of a cult of drug smugglers
blamed for 15 slayings in northern Mexico has been put to music in a
ballad that's being played by Spanish-language radio stations.

   ``Tragedy in Matamoros'' is a traditional ``corrido'' played in waltz
time with guitars and accordion.

   Corridos for years in Mexico have been used to tell about important
historical events or social problems. Their themes often relate to the
plight, problems and concerns of immigrants. They also were used to
spread news and deliver messages.

   Corridos are popular along U.S.-Mexico border and among the Chicano

   ``Tragedy in Matamoros,'' by the group Suspiros de Salamanca,
mentions by name only Sara Aldrete, who authorities said was the cult's
``godmother'' and is in custody in Mexico City.

   The song also refers to ``El Padrino,'' the Godfather, Adolfo de
Jesus Constanzo.

   Constanzo, the cult's charismatic leader, is believed to have
directed the killings at Santa Elena Ranch near Matamoros, as well as
slayings in Mexico City. On May 6, Constanzo reportedly ordered one of
his followers to kill him and another man as police were closing in on
their Mexico City hideout.

   The ``young American'' in the lyrics is Mark Kilroy, a University of
Texas student abducted while in Matamoros during a spring break outing.

   Kilroy's body was one of 15 unearthed at or near the ranch. Some of
the victims were sacrificed in occult rituals designed to bring magical
protection for the drug-smuggling, suspects and police have said.

   Andres Cantu, production director at KBOR-AM in Brownsville, across
the Rio Grande from Matamoros, said it was inevitable that the story
would become a corrido.

   ``This is the first one,'' Cantu said. ``There are going to be other
versions coming out.''

   Some listeners call and request the song, he said.

   At KGBT-AM in Harlingen, program director Rogelio Botello said
``Tragedy in Matamoros'' is the most popular corrido this week.

   ``It is getting some play here in Houston, also in Dallas, Fort Worth
and San Antonio,'' said Albino Garcia, with sales promotion at Ramex
Records, the Houston-based company distributing the recording to

   ``We're taking quite a few orders now,'' Garcia said.

   Here is a translation of the lyrics:

   ``There the devil did fail them,
   Satanic murderers.
   They say Sarita Aldrete
   And that Cuban `El Padrino'
   Are the main ones responsible
   For everything that has happened.
   In Brownsville and Matamoros
   They all started trembling
   Because that satanic gang,
   They are not afraid to kill.
   That's how they prayed to the devil,
   In order to triumph in all that they do.
   The parents were very worried
   About their beloved son.
   That young American,
   Well, he had been lost
   On the 14th of March
   While he was out with some friends.
   They say that some `federales'
   They caught a snitch.
   `We will protect you.
   Give us some good information.
   The Santa Elena Ranch,
   It looks like a cemetery there.
   Now I say good goodbye from here,
   From Rancho Santa Elena.
   Here they found the gringo
   Dead with another dozen.
   For that satanic gang
   Black will be their sentence.''

   AP-NY-05-16-89 0425EDT
   (C) Copyright 1988, Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.


Cult Leader Body Now In Miami

   MEXICO CITY (AP) - The body of the man authorities say was the
``godfather'' of a cult linked to 15 slayings near the U.S. border has
been transported from Mexico to his hometown of Miami, a police source

   The source, who works in the Mexico City attorney general's office,
said the body of Adolfo de Jesus Constanzo, 26, was transported Friday
on a commercial flight to Miami.

   The source, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said the body had
remained unclaimed at the Mexico City morgue since Constanzo died May 6,
when he reportedly ordered a partner to shoot him when police closed in.

   Constanzo has been described as the leader of a sect authorities
blame for 15 killings outside the border city of Matamoros. Sect members
have said some slayings were ritual killings while others were

   Constanzo's body was claimed by a U.S. Consulate representative
acting on behalf of Constanzo's mother, Aurora Gonzales del Valle of
Miami, the source said. He said funeral arrangements were pending in
Miami, but did not have specifics.

   The process of transporting the body to the United States was
complicated by the investigation and red tape associated with
transporting a body across international borders, the source said. He
said even though Constanzo's family had made inquiries, they did not
claim the body until this week.

   U.S. Embassy spokesman Bill Graves said late Friday that he knew U.S.
officials were working to return Constanzo's body to his family but had
no further details.

   AP-NY-05-20-89 0416EDT
   (C) Copyright 1988, Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.