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Mexican Drug War

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Confessed Mexican Hitman Claims Torture

Location: 
Mexico
A man accused of being one of Mexico's most notorious hired killers says his confessions were false and extracted through torture. Soto Arias, 29, a junkyard owner, has been convicted of nothing, and his torture complaint is being investigated by Mexico's human rights commission. Many other crime suspects and ordinary citizens have made similar allegations about disappearances, extra-judicial killings and torture at the hands of the Mexican military and police.
Publication/Source: 
United Press International (DC)
URL: 
http://www.upi.com/Top_News/World-News/2010/10/10/Confessed-Mexican-hit-man-claims-torture/UPI-32881286748076/

Drug Prohibition Violence Hangs Over Mexican Mayors

Location: 
Mexico
At least 11 mayors have been killed this year across Mexico, as a spooky sense of permanent siege takes hold in the many communities where rival drug trafficking organizations fight for control of local drug sales, marijuana and poppy fields, methamphetamine labs and billion-dollar smuggling routes to the United States.
Publication/Source: 
The Seattle Times (WA)
URL: 
http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/nationworld/2013113288_mexmayors10.html

Search for Missing Tourist Thwarted by Drug Prohibition Gangs

Location: 
Mexico
A search for a missing American tourist presumably shot and killed by Mexican pirates on a border lake has been thwarted by threats of an ambush from drug prohibition gangs.
Publication/Source: 
The Associated Press

Poor Mexicans Easy Scapegoats in Vicious Drug Prohibition War

Location: 
Ciudad Juárez, CHH
Mexico
Residents in Ciudad Juarez, the epicentre of Mexico's bloody drug prohibition war, say authorities are going after small offenders and innocent people such as poor workers even as they allow powerful drug lords to operate with impunity. President Felipe Calderon is under pressure to show results in his offensive against traffickers in Ciudad Juarez where he has deployed more than 7,500 soldiers and police, making the crackdown a central part of his war on drug trafficking organizations. But rights groups say corrupt or ineffective police and soldiers have rounded up hundreds of drug addicts and ordinary people in the manufacturing city across from El Paso, Texas without making major drug busts or arresting top capos.
Publication/Source: 
STV (UK)
URL: 
http://news.stv.tv/world/201607-poor-mexicans-easy-scapegoats-in-vicious-drug-war/

Mexican President Wants to Eliminate 2,000 Local Police Departments Corrupted by Drug Prohibition

Location: 
Mexico
Amid a bloody war against drug trafficking organizations, Mexican President Felipe Calderon said that he was sending Congress a plan to overhaul the country's police system by doing away with local forces. The idea, called "unified command," has been debated for months, as the death toll from the nearly 4-year-old drug prohibition war surpassed 28,000 and signs of police collusion with crime syndicates continued to pile up.
Publication/Source: 
Los Angeles Times (CA)
URL: 
http://articles.latimes.com/2010/oct/06/world/la-fg-mexico-police-reform-20101006

Mexico Drug War Update

by Bernd Debusmann, Jr.

Mexican drug trafficking organizations make billions each year smuggling drugs into the United States, profiting enormously from the prohibitionist drug policies of the US government. Since Mexican president Felipe Calderon took office in December 2006 and called the armed forces into the fight against the so-called cartels, prohibition-related violence has killed more than 28,000 people, the government reported in August. The increasing militarization of the drug war and the arrest of dozens of high-profile drug traffickers have failed to stem the flow of drugs -- or the violence -- whatsoever. The Merida initiative, which provides $1.4 billion over three years for the US to assist the Mexican government with training, equipment and intelligence, has so far failed to make a difference. Here are a few of the latest developments in Mexico's drug war.

Ciudad Juarez
Thursday, September 30

On Texas's Falcon Lake, which straddles the US-Mexico border, an American couple was attacked as they rode a jet ski on the American side of the lake. Tiffany Hartley, 29, said that her and her husband David were chased and shot at by armed men coming from the Mexican side of the lake. David was shot in the head and left in the water, and is presumed dead. There have been several previous incidents of armed men on the lake, in some instances wearing Mexican police uniforms and shaking down fishermen.

In Ciudad Juarez, eleven people were murdered. This brings the total number of homicides during the month of September to 288, 44 of them women. As of September 30,  approximately 2,324 murders have been committed in Ciudad Juarez.

In Acapulco, 22 Mexican tourists from Michoacan were kidnapped and remain missing.  The motives remain unclear, although it should be noted that none of the kidnapped men was a known drug trafficker and it appears they were mostly mechanics and carpenters.

Saturday, October 2

Across Mexico, at least 34 people were killed during a 48-hour period. In the isolated Durango town of San Jose de La Cruz, a firefight between rival drug traffickers left fourteen dead. Much of Durango has traditionally been under the control of the Sinaloa Cartel, led by Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman.

Sunday, October 3

In Guadalupe, near Monterrey, 15 people were killed after a suspected grenade attack on the town’s main plaza.  Six children, including a three-year old, were among the wounded. It was the fourth attack with an explosive device in the Monterrey area in two days. On Friday, grenade attacks were reported outside a prison, the US consulate, and a federal court.

Tuesday, October 5

In Ciudad Juarez, 14 people were killed across the city. In one incident, a wounded man attempted to hide inside a restaurant, only to be discovered by the gunmen who were chasing him and shot dead in front of many patrons. Some were seen to have bloodstains on their clothing from the incident. 23 killings were reported in Juarez in the first 3 days of October.

Total Body Count for the Week: 153

Total Body Count for the Year: 8,305

Read the previous Mexico Drug War Update here.

Mexico

Mexico’s Growing Legion of Drug Prohibition Orphans

Location: 
Mexico
Largely overlooked is the story of the estimated tens of thousands of children whose lives are blighted by drug prohibition violence. Neither Mexico's government nor the various independent groups studying organized crime keep track of the number of orphans who have lost fathers, and sometimes mothers too, to the drug prohibition war.
Publication/Source: 
Reuters
URL: 
http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSTRE6952YW20101006

New Spike in Violence Punctuates Mexico's Drug Prohibition War

Location: 
Mexico
Clashes between rival gangs created by drug prohibition in Mexico left 34 people dead over the weekend, and the beating death of a mayor is the fifth killing of a city leader in six weeks, the latest fallout from the country's deadly drug prohibition war.
Publication/Source: 
PBS (VA)
URL: 
http://www.pbs.org/newshour/rundown/2010/10/mexico-drug-war.html

Falcon Lake 'Pirate' Attack: Sign of Spillover from Mexico Drug Prohibition War?

Location: 
Falcon Lake, TX
United States
The alleged shooting of a US boater by Mexican pirates on Falcon Lake, which straddles the Texas-Mexico border, is raising fears about spillover drug prohibition violence from Mexico into the US.
Publication/Source: 
The Christian Science Monitor (MA)
URL: 
http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/2010/1005/Falcon-Lake-pirate-attack-Sign-of-spillover-from-Mexico-drug-war

34 Dead in Mexico's Weekend of Blood

Location: 
Mexico
Mexico has been shaken by yet another weekend of drug prohibition violence, with 34 deaths blamed on drug trafficking organizations and a series of grenade attacks that injured a dozen people.
Publication/Source: 
The Age (Australia)
URL: 
http://www.theage.com.au/world/34-dead-in-mexicos-weekend-of-blood-20101004-1649q.html

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