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.
Prensa Libre (Guatemala City, Guatemala) 2/23/09
The firearms traffic to Guatemala is increasing. Its geographic position between the US and Colombia has changed the country into areas of disorder. Arms and equipment supporting organized crime arrive by three routes. The most used is the one from the US where large caliber firearms are brought in, often as a payment for cocaine. Perry Holloway, director of the narcotics section of the US Embassy, affirmed that the route is the same as the one used to transport drugs to the US, only in reverse. Much of it is by air, he said. The second route for transporting equipment is over the border between Guatemala and Honduras. The third is from Nicaragua where combat equipment used during the civil war in that country was not destroyed. Thus, AK-47 rifles and grenades are brought to Guatemala hidden in vehicles and also smuggled in by foot traffic. Guatemalan Minister of Government Salvador Gandara said, “We have seen that Guatemala is vulnerable in the lack of control of the border with Mexico.”
Prensa Libre found that offensive weapons are on sale at affordable prices in cities along the Mexican border. For example, AK-47 assault rifles sell for Q2,500 [$315 US] used and up to Q10,000 [$1,255 US] new. A grenade is worth Q300 [$38 US].
El Universal (Mexico City) 2/23/09
The Mayor of Ixtapaluca, state of Mexico, who, two weeks ago asked to be released from his duties in order to seek the candidacy of the PRD party for the Chamber of Deputies [House], is now under investigation by drug enforcement (SIEDO) for links to organized crime. Mario Moreno Conrado was arrested Monday by federal agents. A judicial order of formal arrest is being sought by the agency in order to complete a full investigation. This would allow them to hold him for 40 days.
A federal judge has ordered Marco Antonio Mejia Lopez held for 40 days while investigation continues in his involvement in the assassination of retired Army General Mauro Enrique Tello in Cancun this month. Mejia Lopez is believed connected with the criminal organization Los Zetas. He is an ex-member of the PRD party’s team that supported Andres Manuel Lopez Obregon. [Obregon narrowly lost the presidential election in 2006 to Felipe Calderon.]
Mexico’s Tourism Commission of the Chamber of Deputies [House] feels that the US warning their citizens not to visit Mexico is an attempt to strengthen the economy of that country by reducing the number of travelers to Mexico. The Secretary of the Commission said Mexico should plan ways of communication with other countries in Europe, Asia and Latin America to attract tourism.
El Imparcial (Hermosillo, Sonora) 2/23/09
Violence in northern Sonora state continues to grow as two more bodies were found, one in Caborca and another in Arizpe. Both were wrapped in blankets. One was shot in the head and the other, strangled with a nylon hose.
El Debate (Sinaloa) 2/23/09
A father and his three-year-old son were gunned down by AK-47 rifle fire in front of a bank in Culiacan, Sinaloa. The man and his son were sitting in a car parked in front of the bank while his wife and two daughters went to the ATM. Two men approached the car with weapons and killed the two with bursts of gunfire that also wounded three other people standing nearby.
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