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How the Cartels Work: Guy Lawson on Mexican Drug Lords

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In the new issue, Guy Lawson examines how the Mexican drug lords have transformed the narcotics trade in America — and how the DEA appears powerless to stop them. As he began reporting his third story on the Mexican drug trade for Rolling Stone, Lawson initially expected to find cartel violence in the States, he discovered Mexican drug leaders have made a decision not to bring their violence north of the border because it would jeopardize their sophisticated business model.

"You realize they're as sophisticated as Walmart and McDonalds and these post-modern multinational corporations that have learned to outsource, to franchise," Lawson says. Click above to watch him break down the pseudo-corporate structure of the drug operations and explain how the drugs get distributed in the States.

Read Lawson's past drug war stories here:

The Making of a Narco State

The War Next Door

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