Mexican police chief charged in disappearance of 43 students

10/26/16 The Washington Post

16755068770_143d2d4146_oMEXICO CITY — A federal judge in Mexico has ordered that a once-fugitive police chief be held on charges of kidnapping in the disappearance of 43 students.

The Attorney General’s Office announced the judge’s order in a brief statement late Tuesday.

National Security Commissioner Renato Sales said earlier Tuesday in an interview with Imagen Radio that former Iguala police chief Felipe Flores hasn’t provided any information about the students’ location.

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Slim in talks with Spanish firms for bid on $3.5 billion Mexico airport terminal – sources

10/25/16 Business Insider

2564224814_f800dcc9d8_oMEXICO CITY/MADRID (Reuters) – Tycoon Carlos Slim’s construction arm is in talks with his majority-owned construction firm FCC and rival Spanish builder Acciona to jointly bid on a coveted $3.5 billion (2.87 billion pounds) Mexico City airport terminal project, five people familiar with the matter said.

Carso Infraestructura y Construccion, part of Slim’s Grupo Carso, is hashing out a deal to form the consortium, which would include three other Mexican companies – all its partners from a winning bid for one of the airport’s runways, four of the people said in recent days, speaking on condition of anonymity.

The bid for the terminal, hot on the heels of Carso’s runway bid, shows how Slim, Mexico’s wealthiest man, is aggressively moving to boost his construction business as his telecoms arm America Movil is squeezed by increased competition and regulation.

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Enrique Peña Nieto: Mexican presidents don’t set out to ‘screw’ the country

10/25/16 The Guardian

A US cable claimed Televisa gave the Mexico State governor Enrique Peña Nieto wide coveragePresidents of Mexico do not wake up thinking how to “screw” the country, the current office holder Enrique Peña Nieto said on Tuesday, seeking to defend his record in government and encourage positive thinking. Peña Nieto’s reputation has been dented by abuses by security forces, conflict-of-interest scandals and political corruption. It took a fresh hit this summer when he hosted the US Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump in Mexico City on 31 August for a hastily arranged visit that surprised many members of his cabinet.

Trump has long pilloried Mexico, pledging to isolate the country behind a huge border wall and saying the United States’ southern neighbor has been sending rapists and drug smugglers north. Speaking at an event in Mexico City organized by the newspaper El Financiero and Bloomberg, Peña Nieto urged an audience of business people and politicians to take an optimistic view of Mexico, even if that did not mean talking up the government.

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Wal-Mart de Mexico’s Profit, Sales Jump in Latest Quarter

10/25/16 The Wall Street Journal

5266815680_ec09e9d38f_b.jpgMEXICO CITY—Retailer Wal-Mart de Mexico SAB reported growth in sales and profit in the third quarter as Mexicans continued to consume at a solid pace thanks to credit and employment growth amid subdued inflation.

Walmex, as the unit of Bentonville, Ark.-based Wal-Mart Stores Inc. is known, reported a profit of 10.05 billion Mexican pesos ($543 million) in the three months through September, compared with 5.92 billion pesos in the year-earlier quarter.

Net profit from continuing operations rose 17% from a year before to 6.7 billion pesos. Walmex agreed in August to sell clothing store chain Suburbia to department store operator El Puerto de Liverpool SAB for about $1 billion. The deal is awaiting antitrust approval to close.

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Study Links Mexico Vigilantes, Inequality

10/26/16 InSight Crime

A new study from a Mexico security expert examines the driving factors behind the explosion of vigilante groups around the nation over the past several years.

In his recently published paper, “Inequality and the Emergence of Vigilante Organizations: The Case of Mexican Autodefensas,” Brian Phillips shines a light on the vigilante groups that emerged in Mexico beginning in 2013.

Phillips, a professor at Mexico City’s Economic Research and Teaching Center (Centro de Investigación y Docencia Económicas), identifies two basic types of vigilante organizations: first, the organically-emerging groups of citizens banding together; and second, groups set up by wealthy patrons, often in response to a threat to their business interests.

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Drug tunnel equipped with lights, ventilation discovered at US-Mexico border

10/26/16 Reuters

Sarajevo_tunnel_3.jpgA long cross-border drug tunnel has been discovered running beneath Mexico towards the US. Starting at a house, the tunnel was well equipped for transiting loads of drugs which were allegedly bound for buyers in America. The tunnel was found 23 feet (7 meters) underground, according to Mexican prosecutors. It measured nine feet (3 meters) wide and four feet (1.2 meters) tall, and was 1,689 feet (514 meters) long. It was equipped with ventilation and lighting, and had rails for pushing packages of drugs through the passageway.

It began at a house in Tijuana, Mexico, where prosecutors found more than “two metric tons of marijuana,” AP reported. Prosecutors originally estimated that five tons of marijuana could be inside the house, but were unable to enter the premises without court permission.

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Mexico: Arrest warrant for missing Veracruz governor

10/26/16 Al Jazeera 

Javier_Duarte_de_OchoaThe Mexican authorities are seeking to arrest a former governor who has disappeared as he faces charges of organised crime and money laundering, officials said.Javier Duarte has not been seen for days after he resigned as governor of the crime-plagued eastern state of Veracruz last week.

Authorities issued an arrest warrant for him last week and the country’s ruling Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) has expelled Duarte, saying the official violated party rules as head of the state. Duarte failed to attend a hearing of the party’s justice committee on Tuesday and his whereabouts are not known. “The expulsion of Javier Duarte de Ochoa was decided because it has been proved … that he systematically violated the party rules and ethics codes,” the party said in a statement.

Interior Secretary Miguel Angel Osorio Chong told Radio Formula last week that officials do not know where Duarte is but believe he is in the country because immigration authorities have no record of him departing.

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