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) 3/6/09
The Chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff, Admiral Mike Mullen, met this morning with Mexican Secretary of the Navy, Mariano Francisco Saynez, with whom he discussed the need for joining forces to combat organized crime through joint operations, interchange of information and intelligence, and coordinated efforts to face the present violence that exists in the country. He insisted on the need for unifying criteria with the armed forces, especially with Mexico, to confront maritime narcotraffic by means of exchanging information and intelligence and the use of high technology to counteract the cartel activities that manage to filter 70% of the drugs that reach the US through Mexican territory and national waters. One of the basic topics the Admiral will discuss with the Mexican military leaders is the border violence and interchange of information to counteract it, according to military sources of both departments.
Alfonso Suarez del Real, Secretary of the National Defense Commission of the Mexican Chamber of Deputies [House] said that the US has the “military temptation” to carry out security measures similar to Plan Colombia in Mexican territory. The legislator said that the idea no doubt arises from “the increase in media coverage saying that Mexico is a failed state; that we have done poorly in actions against narcotraffic; that the cartels overwhelm us, while they, the US, are champions of war.” Suarez del Real, a member of the [left wing] PRD party, said the US is in favor of engaging in another plan like the one mounted in Colombia over ten years ago. Referring to that action, he pointed out that military intervention has not resolved the drug problem.
In Tijuana on a tour of Baja California, President Felipe Calderón assured that the war against narcotraffic is not solely a government struggle, but needs public support. He said that the idea of negotiating agreements with organized crime is “incredibly naive and even, I would say, stupid.”
The Mexican National Defense Department (Sedena) turned over for investigation 12 members of the military accused of providing protection to a criminal cell in the state of Aguascalientes. The men are suspected of being associated with the Gulf drug cartel.
The Mexican federal AG confirmed that Boris Del Valle Alonso, “El Boris,” the advisor to the mayor of Cancun, Quintana Roo, has been arrested on charges of links to Los Zetas, the armed killer branch of the Gulf drug cartel. Del Valle Alonso frequently was part of the mayor’s escort group. His connection with Los Zetas was presumably to provide protection to the criminal organization. It was also pointed out that “there is knowledge” that “El Boris” had made various financial transactions to European countries.
Frontera (Tijuana, Baja California) 3/6/09
Three police and a civilian were injured when attacked by gunshots and a fragmentation grenade from a group of presumed hired killers in the town of San Francisco del Rincon, Guanajuato. The police had stopped a vehicle when the occupants abandoned it and began firing at them. The civilian wounded by gunshots was an innocent bystander. The attackers escaped on foot.
El Porvenir (Guayaquil, Ecuador) 3/6/09
74 Ecuadorans deported from the United States are to arrive in Guayaquil’s airport Friday evening. The 74 were ordered deported for “being found without documents to accredit their regular migratory status.”
El Heraldo (Tegucigalpa, Honduras) 3/6/09
109 Hondurans arrived Friday at noon in Tegucigalpa’s airport after being deported from the United States.
The director of Honduras’ “Attention Center for Returned Migrants” went on the radio and “lamented that every day tens of Hondurans emigrate to the United States with the hope of a better life. Nevertheless, once in that country they find a different reality than the one they dreamed about.”
La Razon (La Paz, Bolivia) 3/7/09
Because of the wave of assaults taking place in the cities of La Paz and El Alto, Bolivia’s Defense Minister asserted that the country’s border with Peru is under military vigilance and control, but added that criminals also use the 1,500 kilometers of Bolivia’s border with Brazil to smuggle drugs, firearms, contraband and “illegals.”
La Hora (Guatemala City, Guatemala) 3/7/09
There were armed confrontations between narcotraffickers and Guatemalan national police in five different areas of the country. The result was four dead including two police officers; four others were wounded and eight persons were arrested. “Heavy caliber” firearms and fragmentation grenades were seized.
El Debate (Sinaloa) 3/7/09
Mexico’s criminal organizations have arsenals with weapons of war superior to the country’s Department of National Defense, according to evidence revealed by the government’s Joint Operation Culiacan-Navolato-Guamuchil. Seizures made so far this year include rocket launchers and machine guns capable of bringing down aircraft. Information has also come from protected witnesses. In the past 65 days, the operation has confiscated rocket launchers, 129 arms, hundreds of ammo clips, “innumerable” cartridges and combat equipment of the highest level. The weapons of choice of the cartels for ground battles are the AK-47 assault rifles and fragmentation grenades.
El Informador (Guadalajara, Jalisco) 3/7/09
A US citizen has been identified as one of three decapitated bodies found last Monday in Tijuana, Baja California. The body of Jorge Norman Harrison, 38, along with two others was found near the city’s bullring. The decapitated bodies also had hands cut off and one was missing feet. Police said Harrison had a narcotic trafficking conviction in the US and owned a pizzeria in Tijuana in which investigators found four pistols and drugs.
El Universal (Mexico City) 3/7/09
A riot began in the municipal jail in Cancun, Quintana Roo, early Saturday morning when federal police arrived to carry out a routine visit. The disturbance required the intervention of at least 500 federal officers and army troops. Many of the rioters attempted unsuccessfully to escape. There were numerous injuries among the rioters including two “gravely injured.”
El Universal (Mexico City) 3/8/09
The Catholic Church in Mexico demanded that the US government have a “change of attitude” that involves a “serious anti-corruption program to eliminate the protection that — from the highest levels of power to the businessmen and public servants — is provided the traffickers, whose impunity makes possible the commerce and consumption of drugs.” After describing the US military as vain and bewildered, the hierarchy of the Church indicated in its weekly publication that Mexico has recognized the serious problem of corruption among its authorities and public servants and demanded that the US do the same and initiate actions to keep watchful and clean out the public institutions that contribute to narcotraffic. The periodical characterized the attitude of the US as hypocritical and having double standards for offering Mexico assistance in the drug war, but on the other hand, demonstrating that it has little ability to control the traffic of drugs and flow of money in its own territory. The publication, which reflects the Church’s position in Mexico, accused the US of “having no intention of confronting the ‘addict culture’ in its own territory, of stopping the traffic of arms inside and outside its borders…” The weekly added the question, “What is the US doing in its interior in order to put an end to the drug distribution networks and the protection of narcotraffic besides delivering puritanical and hypocritical speeches so characteristic of that country?”
Mexican Army Special Forces seized another arsenal in Culiacan, Sinaloa, comprised of 14 firearms, among them three anti-aircraft weapons, 29 grenades of assorted types, 85 cartridge clips, 8,120 cartridges and five vehicles, three of them armored. Again, the seizures were made due to an anonymous tip. Several similar seizures have been made over the past week.
Mexican federal agents shot it out with a group of presumed hit-men in Reynosa, Tamaulipas and captured two of them before the others escaped. The fight broke out when authorities attempted to stop two vehicles.
Prensa Libre (Guatemala City, Guatemala) 3/8/09
The death toll rose to fourteen out of the confrontations in various parts of Guatemala between police and criminals groups, and between criminals themselves. Four of the victims were found with hands and feet tied and each with a coup de grace.
The Director of Guatemala’s National Civil Police (“PNC”), a woman, has hired a team of foreigners to be her personal security bodyguards “who protect her zealously, even from her own subordinates.” A spokesman for the “PNC” said that the Director has received death threats from organized crime and narcotraffic gangs.
Frontera (Tijuana, Baja California) 3/8/09
About 60 men were arrested while attending a celebration party in Tijuana Sunday afternoon. According to family members, hundreds of military arrived at the party, separated the men from the women and arrested the men, including all the waiters, other employees and musicians. The military said they could not release any information at this time. However, it is presumed that one of those detained could be an associate of Teodoro Garcia Simentel, “El Teo,” a drug cartel boss.
-end of report-