NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF FORMER BORDER PATROL OFFICERS
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Foreign News Report
The National Association of Former Border Patrol Officers (NAFBPO) extracts and condenses the material that follows from Mexican and Central and South American on-line media sources on a daily basis. You are free to disseminate this information, but we request that you credit NAFBPO as being the provider.
El Universal (Mexico City) 8/16/08
Several articles focused on resolving the national feeling of insecurity and the government’s proposed measures to combat organized crime, especially the widespread kidnapping for ransom.
- César Camacho Quiroz (PRI party), president of the Justice Commission, said that the problem of insecurityy in Mexico will not be resolved by stiffer penalties but by eradicating impunity, as only 2 of 10 crimes are reported.
- Editorial excerpt: The cry of ¡Ya basta! (Enough!) against insecurity is gaining support throughout the country. The organization, Mexico United against Crime, has received strong support to is call for authorities at all levels to coordinate efforts to confront crime.
- A shootout between police and robbers in a gambling hall in Chetumal, Quintana Roo left one dead , four arrested and a hostage wounded. One of those arrested was an ex-policeman
- The vice-president of a national employers group announced that the popular resort town of Cancún, Quintana Roo has fallen into the hands of the Russian Mafia and Cuban-Americans [sometimes described as the Miami Mafia]. The Cubans deal mainly in human smuggling and the Russians in arms and prostitution.
Prensa Libre ( Guatemala City, Guat.) 8/16/08
- A radio station in Chiquimula, Guatemala, is airing this ad: ” We offer trips to the north, in quality buses, and it is only necessary to walk one hour at the border with Mexico. We take you only if you have relatives in the U.S., but we guarantee your arrival. ” The people traffickers then “shamelessly” furnish their phone number; “due to the fact that in the eastern portion of the country there is great interest in emigration, people go for whatever is available.” The radio station manager said that the ads are by a well known party who also uses other radio stations. ”Other small ads are placed in different printed media, many times disguised as excursions or vacations.” Donald Gonzalez, an Immigration spokesman, said “This is nothing new, but the only thing these souces haven’t yet said is ‘I’m a coyote’ “
- A wave of violence caused ten homicides in the capital city & outlying areas, including that of two Mexicans. Most events involved gunfire.
El Comercio, Correo, and RP (all in Lima, Peru 8/16/08)
These sources carried a curious report about a couple of sacks being found dumped out on the street in an industrial area of Callao, the seaport of Lima. The contents : one hundred fourteen 60 mm. mortar shells, of Russian manufacture, some of them in perfect condition. No one can figure out how or why they ended up there. The finder called police; the police called the army; the army took them away. Rechecking the story later, the portion about Russian manufacture had been deleted, but was in at least one source originally. Some reports called them “war grenades” and added a comment by a military person in Peru stating that the shells have a destructive radius of 40 meters.
El Debate (Sinaloa) 8/17/08
- As part of Joint Operation Culiacán-Navolato, the Mexican military, searching an uninhabited house in Culiacán, discovered and seized an arsenal consisting of 8 rifles, 18 pistols, 21 ammo clips for pistols, 9 ammo clips for AK-47s, R-15s and M-16s as well as drum cartridge loaders and 1,283 cartridges of different calibers. Five of the pistols were “encrusted” with precious stones and gold. Also seized were 150 parcels of dollar bills of different denominations. The money has not yet been counted, but estimated in the thousands of dollars.
- Mexican Army assigned to traffic checkpoints in Culiacán, stopped and disarmed a group of municipal police for failure to have written authorization with them for being armed.
- Apparently seeking the brighter side of the wave of violence that has rocked the state of Sinaloa, El Debate notes that the funeral business has had a rise in profits of some 35% due to the increase in murders.
Norte (Cd. Juárez, Chihuahua) 8/17/08
At least 10 people, including a 4-year-old, are reported killed in a shootout in Creel, Chihuahua, a tourist town near the Copper Canyon area. According to police accounts, a group of some 20 people were leaving a dance hall when an armed group in at least three vehicles opened fire on them with assault rifles and pistols.
Frontera (Tijuana, Baja California) 8/17/08
The governor of the state of Veracruz, Fidel Herrera, considers this the time for Mexico to create a national police to attack organized crime. ”Our proposal is to unify commands and strategies. Perhaps the moment has arrived to have only one national police like those in France, Italy, and many democratic countries of the world,” he asserted.
El Universal (Mexico City) 8/18/08
- A total of 26 homicides related to organized crime occurred over the weekend, 20 in Chihuahua, 3 in Baja California and one each in Sinaloa, Durango and Colima. This count includes the count in Creel reported yesterday, the official total in that incident is 13 dead including a 1-year-old.
- The Army has suffered 60 killed in action in the anti-drug war so far during the present administration of President Felipe Calderón.
- In its editorial, El Universal suggests that it would be advisable for the government to take advantage of public indignation over recent crimes in order to put into effect more ambitious measures against narcotraffic. In his opinion column, Jacobo Zabludovsky laments that Mexico stays the same through every administration, always confronting problems superficially, without any depth of analysis. Demetrio Sodi, in his column, wonders if this is just another presidential term wasted in combatting public insecurity.
El Diario de Coahuila (Saltillo, Coahuila) 8/18/08
So far this year, 62 kidnappings for ransom have been reported in the state of Mexico. This has resulted in the arrests of 68 kidnappers during the past four months, putting two criminal bands out of business. The Attorney General’s office (PGR) reports that there are an average of 64 kidnappings per month in the country.
La Jornada (Mexico City) 8/18/08
Five subjects who tried to pass themselves off as federal officers in order to kidnap a businessman in Tlapanalá, Puebla were captured by the citizens of the town, beat up and were nearly lynched before authorities negotiated their release to official custody. Three of the five suffered major injuries during their custody following the “citizens arrest.” The photo relates.
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