April 20, 2013 |
MEXICO CITY - Gen. Tomas Angeles Dauahare, who once held the plum post of military attache to the Mexican Embassy in Washington, was rumored to be the next defense minister of Mexico. Until that day in May last year when he and three other top military men were arrested on suspicion of working on behalf of a notorious drug cartel. It was the largest indictment of army officers on charges of drug-trafficking in recent memory, hailed in many quarters as proof of then-President Felipe Calderon's determination to root out corruption at every level.
April 12, 2013 |
MEXICO CITY - Mexican drug cartels are striving to become “key players in the European drugs market,” Europol officials said Friday. Their statement , issued from Europol headquarters in the Hague, said that Mexican criminals have become “global market coordinators” in trafficking cocaine and synthetic drugs to Europe. Police officials also alleged that Mexicans were moving firearms from southeast Europe and trading them with cocaine dealers in the Americas. They also specifically cited the Zetas cartel--perhaps the most ruthless of the Mexican gangs - for reportedly trafficking human beings “for sexual exploitation” from northeast Europe to Mexico.
April 11, 2013 |
MEXICO CITY - Debate is intensifying over armed vigilante patrols that have sprung up in crime-plagued sections of rural Mexico, particularly in the state of Guerrero, where some patrols joined forces this week with a radical teachers union that has been wreaking havoc with massive protests, vandalism and violent confrontations with police. The two groups, on the surface, would appear to have little in common. The vigilante patrols, typically made up of masked campesinos , are among dozens that have emerged in the countryside in recent months, purporting to protect their communities from the depredations of the drug cartels.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 5, 2013 |
Three Philippine men have been convicted of importing military weapons through a shipment to Long Beach in a plot to arm Mexican drug cartels and gang members, federal authorities said. Evidence presented during the four-week trial in federal court in Los Angeles showed that the men conspired to sell weapons that included machine guns and rocket-propelled grenade launchers, as well as explosives including mortars and grenades, according to the FBI. The men, identified as Sergio Syjuco, 26; Cesar Ubaldo, 27; and Arjyl Revereza, 26, met with an undercover FBI agent who posed as a prospective buyer, federal authorities said.
February 22, 2013 |
MEXICO CITY - After a closed-door meeting with Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto here Friday, Republican Sen. John McCain said he was "convinced" that the new leader was "committed to taking action against the drug cartels. " McCain also noted that Peña Nieto, in deference to U.S. sovereignty, appears determined to stay on the sidelines as the U.S. Congress debates immigration policy changes that could affect millions of Mexicans. The vote of confidence in Peña Nieto on the security front was significant, coming from an influential member of the powerful Senate Armed Services Committee.
January 24, 2013 |
With this month's seizure of 7 tons of marijuana at the U.S.-Mexico border, it's probably time to stop pretending that the assorted statewide legalization measures sweeping the country in recent years are the foundation for a domestic pot-growing industry that will create jobs and can be taxed and regulated like other industries. Marijuana -- medical and otherwise -- has already been largely taken over by the Mexican drug cartels, which enforce their personnel regulations with bullets and do not pay taxes to ship their goods across the border.
January 23, 2013 |
MEXICO CITY - The case against six Mexican military officers accused of colluding with the Beltran Leyva drug cartel may be falling apart as federal prosecutors under new President Enrique Peña Nieto have reportedly admitted they lack sufficient evidence to back up the government's allegations. The prosecutors' statement to a federal judge presiding over the criminal case was included in court documents obtained by the newspaper Reforma and published Tuesday. A representative of the Mexican attorney general's office would not comment.
January 5, 2013 |
GUATEMALA CITY - She holds one of the most dangerous jobs in this spectacularly dangerous country, confronting the most feared and powerful men of the Guatemalan present: gang leaders; dirty public officials; shot-callers in the Mexican drug cartels who have bled in from the north. She is also taking on the titans of Guatemala's past: military men and security chiefs whom she has accused of human rights abuses during the nation's brutal 35-year civil war. Guatemala's emblematic 20th century strongman, Efrain Rios Montt, has been under house arrest since January, when her office charged him with genocide and crimes against humanity.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 26, 2012 |
WELDON, Calif. - A few minutes after 4 a.m., agents in camouflage cluster in a dusty field in Kern County. "Movement needs to be slow, deliberate and quiet," the team leader whispers. "Lock and load now. " They check their ammunition and assault rifles, not exactly sure whom they might meet in the dark: heavily armed Mexican drug traffickers, or just poorly paid fieldworkers camping miserably in the brush. Twenty minutes later, after a lights-off drive for a mile, the agents climb out of two pickup trucks and sift into the high desert brush.
December 21, 2012 |
MEXICO CITY - You find the capos of the drug trade, and you arrest them or kill them. That, in its simplest form, was the idea behind the so-called kingpin strategy that former Mexican President Felipe Calderon pursued with zeal for most of his six-year term. As his administration drew to an end this year, he would often mention, as a point of pride, that his government had taken out two-thirds of Mexico's 37 most wanted criminals. But as new President Enrique Peña Nieto rolled out his crime-fighting strategy this week, his team was explicit about the trouble that "kingpin" had wrought: On Monday, Interior Minister Miguel Angel Osorio Chong said the strategy caused a fragmentation of criminal groups that had made them "more violent and much more dangerous," as they branched out into homicide, extortion, robbery and kidnapping.