Two journalists exposing Mexico’s corruption and drug violence murdered within one week


Source: The Guardian

Mexico’s embattled press corps has suffered a shattering start to the new year with the murders of two journalists who had dared chronicle their country’s slide into drug- and corruption-fuelled violence.

Margarito Martínez Esquivel, a crime reporter and photographer who often collaborated with members of the foreign media, was shot dead outside his home in the northern city of Tijuana on Monday lunchtime.


Mexico charges 7 in ‘Fast and Furious’ weapons trafficking


Source: ABC News

MEXICO CITY — Mexican prosecutors said Sunday they have charged seven people, including former top officials, in the “Fast and Furious” weapons trafficking scandal.

The December 2010 murder of Border Patrol agent Brian Terry exposed the bungled “Fast and Furious” investigation, in which agents from the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives allowed criminals to buy guns with the intention of tracking the weapons


Indigenous communities in Mexico replace corn crops with cannabis


Source: Axios

ndigenous communities in Oaxaca, Mexico, are replacing corn crops with cannabis in anticipation of marijuana being legalized in the country.

What’s happening: Ten communities in the sierra formed the collective Oaxaca Highlands and are in the process of obtaining growing permits.


The Three Criminal Fronts Sparking Violence in Sonora, Mexico


Source: Insight Crime

Murders have spiked in Mexico’s northern state of Sonora, thanks to the volatile mix of a veteran drug trafficker’s alleged return, internal disputes within the Sinaloa Cartel, and an offensive by the powerful Jalisco Cartel New Generation.

Sonora wrapped up last year with 1,765 murders and a 20 percent increase in its homicide rate, according to the news outlet El Sol de Hermosillo. Municipalities such as Cajeme and Empalme recorded even larger jumps in homicide rates, increasing more than 40 percent when compared to 2020. Forced disappearances have also plagued the US-Mexico border state.


Ten bodies left in SUV outside Mexican state governor’s office


Source: The Guardian

An SUV filled with 10 bodies was left outside the office of a Mexican state governor in a public square lit up with holiday decorations, officials said on Thursday.

The bodies were crammed into a Mazda SUV left before dawn near a Christmas tree in the main plaza of the state capital of Zacatecas.


Mexico Attorney General Seeks up to 39 Years Prison for Ex-Pemex Boss


Source: US NEWS

MEXICO CITY (Reuters) – Mexico’s attorney general has requested a prison sentence of up to 39 years for the former chief executive of state oil company Petroleos Mexicanos (Pemex) for his role in a corruption scandal, two judicial sources said on Wednesday.

Emilio Lozoya is accused of having requested money from scandal-plagued Brazilian construction conglomerate Odebrecht to partially finance the presidential campaign of former President Enrique Pena Nieto in exchange for contracts.


Mexico’s outgoing central bank governor calls to protect its independence


Source: Financial Times

The Bank of Mexico’s outgoing governor has spoken out about the importance of protecting the bank’s constitutional mandate as the institution faces mounting political pressure from President Andrés Manuel López Obrador and his party.

The bank’s autonomy was recently called into question when López Obrador withdrew his nominee to be the next governor and replaced him with a little-known public sector economist.


Presidential referendum in Mexico becomes political football


Source: AP News

A referendum allowing Mexicans to vote midterm on whether the president should remain in office has become a strange political football involving all three branches of government.

President Andrés Manuel López Obrador announced gleefully Monday that his supporters had collected 10 million signatures in favor of the referendum — several times more than is legally required — which could put his future at risk.


Failed ‘kingpin strategy’ at heart of new Mexico-US security plans


Source: Mexico News Daily

The United States and Mexico have officially entered a new phase of their partnership to tackle transnational organized crime groups and the evolving regional drug trade, yet recent announcements suggest the two countries are relying on some of the same failed strategies.

Mexican Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard met with U.S. government officials December 14 to mark the official start of the Bicentennial Framework. First announced in early October during a “high-level security dialogue,” the plan proposes a “new shared vision of regional security and collaboration.”


Court sentences two Mexican army officers to 30 years for femicide


Source: Reuters

A court in the southern Mexican state of Chiapas has sentenced two army officers to 30 years in prison for femicide over the killing a female soldier, the state attorney general’s office said on Friday.

In addition to handing down the jail terms, the court ordered the army captains to each pay a fine of almost 520,000 pesos ($25,194) for killing the 28-year-old woman in April 2019, according to the attorney general’s office.