Archive for September 22nd, 2008

Crime and unrest in Mexico and Central America on the rise

September 22, 2008

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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.

(Guadalajara, Jalisco) & El Universal ( Mexico City)  9/20/08
An elite force of a thousand Guatemalan soldiers has been deployed along Guatemala’s border with Mexico to reduce the operational area of drug smuggling by land, rivers and even by air. The force is supported by tracked and armored vehicles, helicopters and other aircraft. The area involved is in the Peten Department across vital areas for the smugglers facing the Mexican states of Campeche, Tabasco and Chiapas.

Saturday 9/20/08

El Informador

El Universal (Mexico City) 9/20/08

–  A 13 year old child became the eighth victim to die as a result of the September 15 bombing in Morelia, Michoacán.  The youth died in a hospital of complications  from multiple  injuries suffered in the explosion.

–  Morelia’s hometown criminal gang known as “La Familia Michoacana” has joined the protests against the bombing there by placing placing seven banners throughout the city with messages blaming their rival gang, “Los Zetas,” for the attacks on the people of Micnoacán.  One of the banners read, “The pain of the Michoacán people overwhelms us.  No more crimes against innocent people.  You will pay for your terrifying acts Zetas.”

El Debate (Sinaloa) 9/20/08

An update on the results of Joint Operation Culiacán-Navolato-Guamúchil was released:
-Drug destruction: Marihuana – 569,908 kg; Marihuana seed – 106 kg.
-Arrests: 202
-Seizures: Arms – 326; Vehicles – 314; Money – $38.7 million US.

Prensa Libre  (Guatemala City, Guatemala) 9/20/08
The U.S. Coast Guard reported last night that it intercepted a “submarine type vessel” carrying seven tons of cocaine some 640 kilometers south of the border between Mexico and Guatemala. The vessel was sunk after it was deemed to be too unstable to tow into port. This come just four days after another similar vessel was found, also carrying tons of cocaine. That one was towed to a Costa Rican port.
La Hora  (Guatemala City, Guat.)  9/20/08
“More than” 150 agents of Guatemala’s “Policia Nacional Civil” have been captured and arrested so far this year because of involvement in “illicit deeds.” The very latest detainees  were part of a house burglary gang. Some of the causes for this are said to be low salaries & low agency’s budget as well as members’ low educational levels and failure to screen applicants.


El Universo (Guayaquil, Ecuador)  (extracts from indicated dates of publication follow)
Sep. 6 ’08 : 57 Ecuadorans (11 women, 46 men) , deported from the U.S., arrived yesterday.
Sep. 9 ’08 : A group of 63 Ecuadorans deported from the U.S. arrived at 16:30 hours yesterday at the Guayaquil Airport. “The migratory authorities of the United States carried out the final order of deportation for these citizens because they were in that country without documents evidencing their regular status.”
Sep. 20 ’08 : 53 deported Ecuadorans were to arrive at the Guayaquil Airport from the United States, where they were as “undocumented.” 

Sunday 9/21/08

El Provenir (Monterrey, Nuevo León) 9/21/08

–  Federal Police arrested 14 municipal police from Torreón, Coahuila for connections with organized crime.  The arrests came after a confrontation between the Federal Police and an armed group when it was observed that the city police were helping the criminals.  Two federal agents were wounded in the encounter.

–  The Mexican justice department (PGR) in Allende, Nuevo León arrested Manuel Iván “El Tony” Cavazos Aguirre, for the purpose of extradition to the US.  The subject is alleged to be a member of a drug gang smuggling and distributing methamphetamine to the US and is wanted by the DEA.
El Heraldo (Tegucigalpa, Honduras)  9/21/08
The “American Dream” of thousands of Hondurans fails to come about. Those who have seen their goal of reaching the United States “by irregular means” add up to 22,300, according to data from Miguel Osorio, immigration official at the Toncontin Airport of this city.
Little by little, the number of deportees comes closer to that of last year. In 2007 there were 29,222 fellow citizens who were returned from that country because of their irregular status.
The monthly average of returnees to date is 2,477, while during 2007 it was 2,439 deportees. (The article was accompanied by a photo showing a large group of younger men walking away from a passenger plane)

Frontera (Tijuana, Baja California) 9/21/08

In Cancún, Quintana Roo, federal agents arrested nine presumed members of a cell of the crime group “Los Zetas.”  This cell is believed to be linked to those responsible for the 12 decapitation murders in Yucatán, August 28.  Seized from the house in which the nine were arrested were fireharms, grenades, cell phones and radio equipment.

Monday 9/22/08
El Universal (Mexico City) 9/22/08

–  Three men arrested by city police in Morelia, Michoacán following the September 15 bombing have been released by the state Attorney General as having no connection with the crime.  They had been arrested because they met the description offered by people attending the Independence Day gathering.  The AG’s office added that ten police officers who had been assigned the security duty of infiltrating the celebrating crowd dressed as civilians did not show up for work that evening.  They are being investigated.  A lengthy video released by El Universal shows the chaotic scene following the explosions.  The captions criticize the crime scene being “replete with people who were not helping.”  It was clear from the video that there had been no attempt to secure the crime scene and remove spectators who were wandering about at will, taking photos and getting in the way of the removal of the victims.

–  The execution murders of 24 people found in a park near Mexico City September 12 is now thought to be connected with the construction of a narco tunnel “in the north,” [Mexicali, Baja California] which had been discovered a few weeks before. [M3 Report 9/2/08]  The Mexican department of justice (PGR) issued the “hypothesis” that some of those murdered had participated in the tunnel construction.  Some of the itinerant brick masons who had lived in a poor community in the state of México are considered innocent victims.  The murders are believed to have been in reprisal for some of the laborers revealing their “special work” during several months in the north.  The discovery of the tunnel is considered a major blow to organized crime since much time and money had been spent on the unfinished project.  Milenio (Mexico City) also contributed to this story.

El Porvenir (Monterrey, Nuevo León) 9/22/08

–  The Mexican justice department (PGR) released information that the shrimp boat seized last Wednesday off the coast of Chiapas [M3 Report 9/19/08] was carrying more than 3.3 metric tons of cocaine.  Six crew members were arrested.

El Diario en Linea (Chihuahua) 9/22/08

–  The use of bodyguards in the state of Chihuahua has increased 300% due to the number of kidnappings of businessmen for ransom.  According to the Mexican Employers Association (Copamex), there are few business leaders who can afford personal escorts.  The solution, they maintain, is not personal security, but state and federal strategies to combat kidnapping.  Hotel services in Ciudad Juárez now include security escort service and armored car rentals.

–  The powerful crime organization “La Familia Michoacana” has reached such levels in the past two years that it now operates in 77 municipalities in the state of Michoacán, over half of the 133 incorporated communities.

Cuarto Poder (Chiapas) 9/22/08

In a story to which many border agents might relate, 50% of the vehicles used for smuggling that are seized by Mexican authorities are auctioned off.  However, many owners reclaim their vehicles arguing ignorance [apparently of the vehicle’s improper use].

-end of report-

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