Mexican Priest Praises Drug Traffickers' Benevolence... Journalists Attacked by Archbishop's Aides for Asking Questions about the Incident Mexican Journalists Terrorized Mexican Journalists Terrorized 9/28/97

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Rev. Raul Soto Vazquez, a Catholic priest, praised the charitable giving of Mexican drug traffickers and said that it should stand as an example to other Mexicans. Citing a $100,000 donation from Rafael Caro Quintero to the victims of Mexico City's 1995 earthquake, Soto said that "not everything these people do is bad, sinners do some good things." These sentiments are apparently shared by many Mexicans who often see local traffickers as at least partially benevolent citizens, doing good things in their own impoverished communities, much as many Mafia bosses were once viewed in their own communities. Enrique Maza, a priest turned journalist, told the Washington Post, "In poor areas, sometimes priests have to choose between poverty and corruption."

Journalists covering the story were attacked by aides to the Archbishop while attempting to question him after a mass last weekend. One journalist was hit over the head with a crosier (the Archbishop's staff of office) while others were kicked, had recording equipment smashed and threatened that they would be sent to "military camps."

(Philanthropy by organized crime leaders is nothing new and is not limited to Latin America. "Incomplete Reality", an editorial in issue #5 of DRCNet's newsletter, The Activist Guide, discusses the case of Darryl Whiting, a former cocaine kingpin who had virtual rule over a public housing complex in Boston -- online at

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Issue #13, 9/28/97 Campaign '97 Update | 9 Year-Old Busted on Candy Rap | Another French Official Speaks Out for Legalization of Cannabis | Mexican Priest Praises Drug Traffickers' Benevolence... Journalists Attacked by Archbishop's Aides for Asking Questions about the Incident | Baltimore Health Commissioner Testifies on Needle Exchange | Spy vs. Spy | Cia Turns 50 | Freudian Slip | Mexican Journalists Terrorized | Former Pakistani Prime Minister's Accounts Alleged to Contain "Drug Money" | Swiss Voters Overwhelmingly Approve Heroin Maintenance and Other Liberal Drug Policies | Dutch Heroin Maintenance to go Ahead as "Pilot Project" | Canada's Medical Marijuana Prohibition Challenged by Multiple Sclerosis Patient | Reformers Charge Washington State Government with Using Federal Funds to Politic Against Drug Reform Initiative | Black Market Meth Labs Kill One Child, Force Evacuation of 30 Families | Shalala Continues to be Dogged by Needle Exchange Questions | Editorial: World Gone Mad
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