Mexican candidate: government erred in not going after arms

02/21/2018 ABC News

Mexican Finance Minister Jose Antonio Meade attends a conference marking the International Day of Family Remittances 2017 in Mexico City
Mexican Finance Minister Jose Antonio Meade attends a conference marking the International Day of Family Remittances 2017 in Mexico City, Mexico June 16, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Jasso

Ruling-party presidential candidate Jose Antonio Meade said Wednesday the Mexican government made a mistake by focusing more on seizing drugs headed for the United States than on weapons headed into Mexico.

Meade said that if he wins the July 1 election he would focus more on inspecting vehicles coming into Mexico and better training for police.

Homicides in Mexico rose by 27 percent between 2016 and 2017. Its homicide rate was 20.5 per 100,000 inhabitants in 2017, compared to 19.4 in 2011, the peak year of Mexico’s drug war. Most of those killings involved guns, many smuggled in from the United States.

Read more…

Advertisements

Mexico probes police in disappearance of three Italians

02/19/2018 Reuters

Mexican Police officer with machine gun by flickr user dream2lifeMexican authorities said on Monday they are investigating whether police in the western state of Jalisco participated in the disappearance of three Italian citizens there.

The Naples natives reportedly went missing on Jan. 31 after being detained by police at a gasoline station in the municipality of Tecalitlan in southern Jalisco.

State authorities are “evaluating, using available information” whether police were involved in the disappearance, said Jalisco general secretary Roberto Lopez.

Read more…

Tijuana’s resurgence of homicides subject of USD policy brief

02/06/2018 – The San Diego Union-Tribune

 

Pedestrian_border_crossing_sign_Tijuana_Mexico
By Toksave

The expansion into Tijuana of a new drug trafficking group, the Cartel Nueva Generacion Jalisco, is a key factor in explaining the city’s record number of homicides in 2017, according to a paper released Monday by the Justice in Mexico project at the University of San Diego.

Citing numbers obtained from the Baja California State Secretariat for Public Security, the study reports 1,780 homicide victims in 2017; the Baja California Attorney General’s Office has reported 1,744. In either case, Tijuana had more homicides that any other city in Mexico last year.

Read more…

Body of Abducted Mexican Journalist Is Found

10/6/2017 The New York Times

The body of a photographer was found Friday in the northern state of San Luis Potosí, a day after he was abducted from his home by men dressed as police officers, Mexican officials said.

The photographer, Edgar Daniel Esqueda Castro, is the fifth journalist to be killed in Mexico this year in retaliation for their reporting, according to the Committee to Protect Journalists in New York.

Another journalist, Salvador Adame Pardo, was abducted from his home in the Mexican state of Michoacán in May; although the authorities say that his burned body was found, his family believes that he is still missing.

Read more…

NEW PUBLICATION: “Following the Money Trail” to Combat Terrorism, Crime, and Corruption in the Americas

Over the past decade, there has been a greater appreciation of how “following the money trail” directly contributes to the fight against terrorism, crime, and corruption around the world. Money serves as the oxygen for any activity, licit or illicit; it is the critical enabler for any organization, from international crime syndicates like the Mexican cartels to terrorist groups like the FARC, ISIS, and Hezbollah. Financial intelligence has helped governments to better understand, detect, disrupt, and counter criminal and terrorist networks and expose political corruption.

Since the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, the United States and its Latin American partners have strengthened their ability to combat money laundering and terrorist financing and consciously incorporated the financial instrument of national power into their national security strategies. “Following the money trail,” counterterrorism, and Drug Kingpin sanctions and asset forfeiture have become particularly important to attack narco-insurgencies, dismantle transnational criminal organizations (TCOs), and address political corruption scandals that have reached the highest levels of governments across Latin America.

This report focuses on the threats from money laundering and terrorist financing, distinguishing the two, and explains government efforts to counter illicit financing. It describes the ways illicit actors raise, move, store, and use money to pursue their dangerous agendas. Specific cases examining the FARC in Colombia, the 2015 fall of the Guatemalan government, and Brazil’s “Operation Car Wash” corruption scandal illustrate how governments use financial intelligence to pursue terrorists, criminals, corrupt politicians, and their financiers in Latin America. Finally, the report emphasizes the need to design, implement, and constantly update national and international strategies to combat the financing of emerging threats like terrorism, crime, and corruption and to safeguard our financial systems.

Download the report

What’s Behind Rising Violence in Colima?: A Brief Look at 2016’s Most Violence Mexican State

expert I (2)The Expert Take, By Eric L. Olson & Gina Hinojosa

May 2017 was Mexico’s deadliest month on record.[1] 2,200 people were reportedly murdered nationwide that month, bringing the country’s death toll to nearly 10,000 since the beginning of the year. If the violence continues at this pace, 2017 will become Mexico’s most murderous year since the federal government began releasing homicide data in 1997, surpassing its previous annual homicide record of 23,000 murders in 2011.

Mexico has struggled with elevated violence for over a decade since the government launched an aggressive campaign against the country’s drug cartels in 2007. Deploying federal troops to communities particularly affected by drug violence has done little to stem criminal organizations’ drug trafficking operations[2] or curb violent crime. In fact, by 2011, Mexico’s murder rate had more than doubled, and while homicides declined moderately between 2012 and 2014, violence picked up once more in 2015 and has continued to rise since (see Figure 1).

Read more…

The only two powerful cartels left’: rivals clash in Mexico’s murder capital

The Guardian 11/28/16 

drug warStanding guard at the scene of the crime, the two police officers surveyed the shattered glass and bullet-pocked bodywork of the Mercedes Benz hatchback and offered their analysis. “It’s an eye for an eye,” said one, repeating a phrase often heard in this coastal city, about 200 miles south-west of Guadalajara. “It’s two groups getting even with each other.” As the officers spoke, a group of children kicked a football just beyond the yellow crime scene tape, and customers wandered unperturbed in and out of a row of shops. But only an hour before gunmen on a motorcycle had opened fire on the car which crashed into the side of a health clinic; miraculously the two occupants survived.

Read more…