Company that Led Training in Torture Techniques for Mexican Police Is Risks Incorporated of Miami, Florida

Trainer Gerardo “Jerry” Arrechea is a high-ranking member of the Comandos F4, an armed Cuban terrorist organization

The foreign company captured on video training police in León, Mexico, in torture techniques is Risks Incorporated of Miami, Florida, and Great Britain, Narco News has learned. The Mexican daily El Universal identified the leaders of the torture workshop as “Jerry Wilson” of Great Britain and Cuban-Mexican Gerardo Arrechea on July 3, but officials refused to identify the company for which they worked.

Risks Incorporated has a Miami telephone number, which could explain why Mexican officials stated that the company they contracted to lead the torture training was a "US private security company." Both individuals, according to information obtained and confirmed by Narco News, are Risks Incorporated employees.

Andrew “Jerry”/“Orlando” Wilson

The man identified as Jerry Wilson, who appears in one of the torture videos dragging a León Special Tactics Group (GET in its Spanish initials) agent through his own vomit, also appears in a Risks Incorporated promotional video available on its website. He wears the same clothing and sunglasses in both the Risks Incorporated promotional video and the leaked León torture training video. In the promotional video at 2 minutes and 56 seconds, Wilson is shown filming a training of police officers dressed in the same uniform the León GET agents use in the leaked training video. Furthermore, the very first still shot in the promotional video shows the exact same terrain and foliage that appears in the leaked torture video, and León police pick-up trucks appear in both videos.

The English-speaking man identified as Jerry Wilson in the León torture training videosJerry promo
The English-speaking man identified as Jerry Wilson in the León torture training videosThe same man from the León video in a Risks Inc. promotional video


Risks Incorporated's website does not list a “Jerry Wilson” on its “Our Personnel” page. However, the British man known as “Jerry Wilson” may be Risks Incorporated's “Orlando,” who is listed as the company's “Chief Specialist Tactical Instructor & Operator.” A January 17, 2006, version of Risks Incorporated's website archived by the Internet Archive Wayback Machine lists an Andrew Wilson as the company's “Chief Consultant.” Andrew Wilson's detailed biography on the January 17, 2006, archive is almost identical to Orlando's biography on Risks Incorporated's current website. Risks Incorporated's website (both archived and current versions) states that Andrew “Orlando” Wilson served in the British army from 1988-93, including 22 months on an operational tour in Northern Ireland which gave him “an excellent grounding in anti-terrorist operations.” Both Orlando and Andrew Wilson's biographies say he served in his unit's Reconnaissance Platoon and “undertook training with specialist units such as the RM Mountain and Artic [sic] Warfare Cadre and US Army's Special Forces.” Wilson's archived biography states that he has worked in Mexico, but this information was removed from Orlando's biography. Orlando's biography says that he has experience in “specialist security / tactical / para-military training for private individuals and specialist tactical police units and government agencies” and “the types of complications that can occur when dealing with international law enforcement agencies and the problem of organized crime.”

 



By August 30, 2006, Risks Incorporated had removed all staff biographies from its website. When the company's "Our Team" page reappeared as "Our Personnel" on May 31, 2007, "Andrew Wilson's" almost identical biography reappeared under the name “Orlando.” The exact same photo on Andrew Wilson's biography page which identified the solider in the photo as “Andrew Wilson, Chief Consultant” reappeared as “Orlando in South Georgia 1992, 1 WFR, Recce Plt.”

Gerardo “Jerry” Arrechea: World Stick-fighting Heavyweight Champion, Soap Opera Stunt Man, Cuban Terrorist, Mexican Torture Trainer


Mexican authorities and media identified the second man responsible for the León torture trainings as Gerardo Arrechea, a Cuban-Mexican martial arts champion and soap opera stunt man who runs the Free Fight Academy with trainings available in Mexico state, Puebla, Morelos, and Chiapas. Free Fight Academy's website, which was removed from the internet after the torture training video scandal broke, bragged that, amongst other achievements, Arrechea is a third-degree black belt in Doce Pares Eskrima (a martial art focused on fighting with sticks), 1996 Eskrima Filipino WEKAF champion of Mexico, and 1999 May Thai (kickboxing) Association champion of Mexico.

Risks Incorporated's website does not list a “Gerardo” on its staff biography page, but it does list a “Jerry,” which is an anglicized nickname for “Gerardo.” Jerry's Risks Incorporated biography states that he is located in Mexico City where he is the director of a martial arts academy in the Mexico City metropolitan area. It goes on to say that he has a fourth-degree black belt in Doce Pares Eskrima, and, like Arrechea, was the 1996 “Heavyweight Stickfighting Champion of Mexico” and the “1999 Thai Boxing Association of Mexico Heavy Weight Champion.”

While Risks Incorporated's current website does not give a last name for Jerry, the Internet Archive Wayback Machine's January 17, 2006, archive for Risks Incorporated's website does: Arrechea. The United States Muay Thai Association (USMTA) lists Jerry Arrechea as the coach of the Muay Thai Athletic Club of Mexico, located in Naucalpan, Mexico state, which is considered within the Mexico City metropolitan area. The USMTA site says that Arrechea's email address is jerryarrechea@hotmail.com.

However, Arrechea's colorful resume doesn't stop there. The Miami-based anti-Castro terrorist organization Comandos F4 lists a Jerry Arrechea with the email address jerryarrechea@hotmail.com as its Mexico contact. The same page lists Marine Captain Gerardo Arrechea as an “International Delegate” and a member of the Comandos F4 board of directors. The Comandos F4 have openly stated to US media that they are prepared to carry out armed attacks against the Cuban government.

Risks Incorporated: Torture Inc.

Together, Arrechea and Wilson make up part of the Risks Incorporated team. Risks Incorporated provides its clients “with cutting edge and real world tactical firearms training, counter insurgency / SWAT training, executive protection services, kidnap and ransom services that fulfill their requirements and fit in with their lifestyles.” It offers special courses only available to government agencies. According to Risks Incorporated's site, “Our specialist tactical police training courses are for agencies that have to deal with the threat of narco terroism [sic], counter insurgency and para-military groups. Risks Inc.'s tactical instructors are predominantly former military personnel with operational experience in counter insurgency and low intensity warfare in both urban and rural environments.... Students can expect to experience sleep deprivation and stress training.”

The company's Mexico page notes that it provides “special operations courses for tactical groups,” a description that almost alludes to the name of the León police force it was training, the Special Tactics Group. When Risks Incorporated posted a promotional video made from the León training, it described the course as a “Counter Terrorism / Counter Insurgency and Swat Training in Latin America.”

A March 2007 archive of Risks Incorporated's site also touts a course that includes what the company refers to as psychological torture. From the site: “This basic interrogation demonstration is from one of our specialist counter terrorism and executive protection / bodyguard training courses. Psychological torture is the main tactic used in professional interrogations, it works and leaves no physical marks. We do this interrogation technique and others on some courses to show how easy it is to break a hostage and we're being nice!”

 

In the event that evidence from Risks Incorporated's website is removed from the internet, Narco News is providing readers with access to Risks Incorporated's promotional video (available on Chiapas Indymedia) and screenshots (PDF) that are relevant to this article.

Additional reporting for this story was done by Bill Conroy.

Comments

This Story Has Legs

Mexico's third largest daily, Por Esto!, has now published Kristin's story.

And the television news program Democracy Now reported the story 4 minutes into its national broadcast this morning, replete with the video footage of the torture training sessions:

The website Narco News has revealed a US private security company is connected to a controversial Mexican police training video that showed officers practicing techniques critics say amount to torture. Two employees of the Florida-based company Risks Incorporated are seen in the video. One of the employees of Risks Incorporated, Jerry Wilson, is seen dragging a Mexican agent through his own vomit. Another employee of Risks Incorporated in the video is identified as Gerardo Arrechea, a Cuban Mexican who has ties to the anti-Castro militant group Commandos F4.

 

Water-Boarding

That may or may not be an actual water-boarding done for the first customer recruitment video. But the reason I think these guys are actually very familiar with the technique is that prior use by them seems apparent. Although the video that starts out "We understand our opponents" shows very brief use, it's things like how the man is blindfolded in suh a way that only his nostrils remain useful. Then just a palm full of water is placed over the mans nostrils to get the intended reaction...whimpering. It's the "skill" these guys are showing with the technique that makes me think that, even if the man be water-boarded is an accomplice of theirs, that the skills I've outlined them using are the kinds of things you only learn from actual experience using the technique. It's how they use a small amount of drinking-water, which may well be (no pun intended) a precious resource in combat/survival situations such as this, to maximum potential. Things like this tell me these guys have the "real deal" written all over them.

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