Tagged: organized crime

Authorities disband Tlaquepaque police

(MEXICO NEWS DAILY) — The municipal police force in Tlaquepaque, Jalisco, has been disarmed and temporarily disbanded due to the suspected collusion of some of its officers with organized crime.

Federal Police, the army, the federal Attorney General’s office (PGR) and the Jalisco state police jointly carried out an operation at 7:00am yesterday at the municipality’s main police station, located in the metropolitan area of Guadalajara.

Personnel from the state Attorney General’s office said the operation was connected to the discovery last week of eight bodies in an abandoned pickup truck in the Guadalajara neighborhood of Morelos.

The newspaper El Universal reported today that a list of names of municipal police officers who are allegedly on the payroll of a drug cartel was found among the possessions of one of the bodies. State authorities have neither confirmed nor denied the claim.

Jalisco Governor Aristóteles Sandoval, who last week warned of worsening insecurity in the state, announced the decision to disarm and suspend the Tlaquepaque police via social media.

“Doing this represents a forceful measure in the face of the insecurity the metropolis is suffering. We’re willing to act with full force until the last day [of this administration]. I know that I have the support of the people; we all want to live in peace . . .” he wrote.

Sandoval said that state police would take over policing duties in Tlaquepaque while municipal officers are at the police academy for training and reevaluation. State Attorney General Raúl Sánchez Jiménez later said that the intervention could last up to 30 days.

But in contrast with the government’s stated justification, the municipal government charged that the operation may be politically motivated.

Tlaquepaque Mayor María Elena Limón, who represents the Citizens’ Movement Party, was not informed about the operation prior to it taking place.

At a press conference yesterday afternoon, Limón said the local government had still not received any documentation about the state government’s actions nor had she heard from Governor Sandoval.

The mayor also said that if the state government doesn’t present evidence within three days to show that municipal police are infiltrated by organized crime, the real motive of the operation will become clear.

“If there are officers linked to organized crime we will be the first to take action to clean out our police but if, on the other hand, the investigation takes one or two weeks, I will understand that this action of the Jalisco government has political overtones and is seeking to influence the elections in July,” Limón said.


Mexican columnist is stabbed 21 times in front of family, underscoring deadly risks faced by journalists

(LOS ANGELE TIMES) — By Kate Linthicum

Carlos Dominguez was waiting at a traffic light in the northern Mexico border city of Nuevo Laredo with his son, his daughter-in-law and his grandchildren when men armed with knives flung open the car door.

Dominguez, a 77-year-old opinion columnist who had worked as a journalist for nearly four decades, was stabbed 21 times, according to Mexican authorities. They said he was attacked by at least three men who remain unidentified and at large.

The killing Saturday afternoon underscores the lethal risks faced by journalists in Mexico and the growing wave of violence gripping the nation.

Officials said they were investigating to determine whether the attack was connected to Dominguez’s work. He wrote frequently about politics, organized crime and occasionally their intersection — a perilous beat in a country that was second only to war-torn Syria in the number of journalists killed last year.

Eleven journalists were slain across Mexico in 2017, with no culprits arrested in most of those cases. Dozens of reporters have fled the country or gone into hiding.

In the Gulf Coast state of Tamaulipas, where Nuevo Laredo is located, 15 journalists have been killed since 2000, according to Mexico’s National Human Rights Commission. The commission, an independent government watchdog, has sent investigators to Nuevo Laredo to look into Saturday’s attack.

The organization Reporters Without Borders said it believed Dominguez was targeted because of his controversial columns.


Homicides have hit a new high in Mexico — but that’s not the only sign of growing insecurity

(BUSINESS INSIDER) — By Christopher Woody

The number of homicides in Mexico has risen steadily over the past three years, particularly in areas where drug-related crime is high.

While much of the violence is related to organized crime, the Mexican government has been criticized for its heavy-handed response, which has led to some high-profile cases of abuse.

The country’s deteriorating security situation promises to play a significant role in the presidential election next year.

Mexico’s 2,764 homicide victims in October is the most recorded in any month over the last 20 years, according to data collected by the country’s federal government.

The new data puts 2017 on pace to be the most violent year in Mexico since the government began releasing homicide data in 1997.

Federal data also showed that 2,371 homicide investigations, which can include more than one victim, were opened in October — the highest monthly total over the past two decades.

The 23,968 homicide victims reported though October this year are nearly 27% more than the 18,895 recorded over the same period last year.

This year’s total through 10 months was almost 55% more than the 15,480 recorded over the same period in 2015.

Mexican federal data may in fact undercount the number of homicides in the country, however.

Civil-society groups have suggested that state governments, which submit crime data to the federal government, may misrepresent or manipulate the number of intentional killings.