Mexico: Mormons who stood up against organized crime tortured and assassinated

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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 ; El Financiero (Mexico City) and El Diario de Juarez (Cd. Juarez, Chihuahua) 7/8/09

Kidnappers punish Mormon community. Criminal groups delivered a hard blow to the town of Galeana, Chihuahua, a Mormon community that had successfully organized to confront the increase in kidnappings. Early Monday morning, a commando group assassinated the activist who headed the movement, Benjamin Franklin LeBaron Ray, and who had in past weeks mobilized a stand in demand of security. The armed thugs invaded his home, breaking doors and windows. Witnesses say he was tortured in front of his family before being abducted along with his brother-in-law, Luis Carlos Widman, who had tried to help him. Both were later murdered. Benjamin LeBaron was the brother of Erick LeBaron, a youth who had been kidnapped a little more than a month ago and was rescued without paying the ransom. After his release, his brother Benjamin began the community organization which solidified into a resistance against organized crime and demanded a halt to insecurity.

Chihuahua’s governor said “there needs to be no speculation” about the motives behind the assassinations and that the full force of the federal and state police will seek out those responsible for the crimes. He is also considering requesting participation of the FBI because of the dual US/Mexican nationalities of the victims.

El Universal (Mexico City) and Frontera (Tijuana, Baja California) 7/8/09

New border tunnel discovered. Mexican Army units discovered a tunnel under construction in Tijuana that presumably was to extend into the US. Responding to an anonymous tip, soldiers discovered the tunnel under an abandoned house in Colonia Aleman, some 100 yards from the international border. The unfinished tunnel was at a depth of about nine feet. Neighbors said the house belongs to a woman who is presently serving time at La Mesa prison in Tijuana. Three arrests were reported in connection with the case.

El Informador (Guadalajara, Jalisco) 7/8/09

Army arrests 15 police. The Mexican Army arrested 15 municipal police from various localities in the state of Coahuila. The operation was carried out from the state’s capital, Saltillo. Unofficial information was that the arrests were made by federal order for further investigation of the police officers.

Cuarto Poder (Chiapas) 7/8/09

“Zeta” ambush. An ambush carried out by a group of Los Zetas, the armed branch of the Gulf Cartel, against a police patrol resulted in four dead — a police commander, two agents and a 15-year-old girl. The police were patrolling the road between two small towns in Chiapas near the Guatemalan border. Los Zetas attacked with AK-47 rifles and fragmentation grenades.

Novedades de Quintana Roo (Quintana Roo) 7/8/09

Mexican immigration official accused. In Chetumal, QR, the agent in charge of the Mexican immigration office (INM) has been accused of “irregularities.” Fredy Nambula Trujillo is reported to have arrived at work on several occasions in a “state of inebriation” and has insulted and mistreated nine detained illegal migrants — seven Cubans, one Somali and a “Caribbean.” The complaints also say the food and medical attention are “subhuman.”

-end of report-

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