45 murder victims in Juarez in March; 1,025 in Mexico…reports from El Diario and Milenio

El Diario reports that 45 people were victims of homicide in March.  This is the highest number in the past 5 months. Two of these victims were women, 2 were minors and 2 were Federal policemen shot in an ambush on March 19.  The report says that another body was discovered in a clandestine grave in the Valle de Juarez and this case is being investigated by the special prosecutor for crimes against women, but this one is not included in the count–apparently because it cannot be said for certain when she was murdered. In all since the beginning of the year, 97 people have been victims of homicide. In January, there were 26 murders, the majority related to gang fights and not “organized crime.” In February, the state Fiscalia reported 26 murders, and in addition, the discovery of 3 bodies in hidden graves and one decapitated person. I would count this as a total of 30, since it is unlikely these other dead will show up in another tally.

The problem of how the deaths are classified by the different government agencies is illustrated in the other article  from MILENIO. This national report says that there were 1,025 murders “related to organized crime” in March–an increase from January and February.  There are no criteria provided as to how these murders are classified as “organized crime related” as opposed to other homicides.  The article reports that the state of Chihuahua is still at the top of the list for murders with 186 homicides. [The article doesn't give a figure for the city of Juarez, but if we take the number from the Fiscalia of 45, that would mean there were 141 homicides elsewhere in Chihuahua state in March]. The other most violent states are: Sinaloa with 108 homicides in March; Estado de Mexico — 86; Guerrero — 68.

It is worth noting that the article does not report anything for Tamualipas–a state where numerous very violent incidents were reported during March, but no official tallies of the number of victims seems to exist. The Milenio article does not give a source for its data.

“Virtual Kidnapping” in Juarez

An 18 yr old in Juarez was victim of a “virtual kidnapping.” He received a call telling him his parents were kidnapped and to go to the central bus station to await instructions. No one met him there, but he was kept on the phone and the kidnappers got his parents’ cell phone number from him. They then called the parents and told them the boy was being held and that they must deposit 250,000 pesos in a bank account in order to have him released. The family did not have the money, but eventually they gathered and deposited 50 thousand pesos. They were given instructions to go to the bus station to recover their son, but then the kidnappers demanded another 50,000 and that is when the parents reported the crime to the Fiscalia.  The boy was found and rescued at the bus station. At no time was there any physical contact with the kidnappers and the calls appear to have come from other states. The spokesman for the Fiscalia warned citizens not to be tricked…that the callers used the telephone directories to find their victims.  A google translation is posted below.  molly

********************************************************************************************************

GOOGLE TRANSLATION
Teen victim of virtual kidnapping is released for 50,000 pesos
Staff
The Journal | 12.09.2012 | 14:24
A man of 18 was kidnapped by a group of criminals over the phone was kept in captivity in the bus station for more than 24 hours.
 
This Wednesday morning, members of the Attorney General’s Office (FGE) conducted an operation to rescue the boy, after making the payment of 50,000 pesos to Bancoppel account.
 
According to the complaint lodged by the family, it all started on Tuesday shortly before noon when the boy received a call at his house in which he said he had kidnapped their parents, so they have to follow the instructions they give .
 
The order was to move to the bus station to make contact with them, so from 10:00 in the morning he went to the place. Throughout this process the hijackers chatted with the young and brought him into confidence, saying he will meet soon with his parents, so he offered to talk to them, but in return they ask for your phone number.
 
Once you have the phone speak to the father to ask 250 thousand pesos. The mother, who for security reasons asked conceal his name, he said he did not have the money, but they would try to get it.
 
In a second call, 20 minutes later, they demanded money, even 50 thousand dollars for releasing his son. Meanwhile the young fielding calls from his captors continue to advise on the premises of the bus station, order obeyed.
 
Once the family was able to get the money they were instructed to deposit it in an account of Bancoppel.
 
The boy’s father said the numbers of those who were marked key one with 883, corresponding to the state of Sonora and a 662-key, number 170-0092, she said.
 
He stated that when they got to talk to your son asked a switch links from your cell phone to him.
 
The young man said that at no time addressed nobody to give you some instruction and everything went through phone calls.
 
The boy’s mom said that after paying the money to the kidnappers asked him to hand over his son, but the man informed them that they would later give them another call for further instructions and pick up your child at the bus station. Minutes after he spoke, but to ask for another 50 thousand dollars, and that was when they chose to go to put the complaint FGE.
 
After informing the officers what had happened went to the bus station to rescue the young and already in place was taken to the premises of the EGF to initiate the investigation. No ministerial agents arrested anyone for the moment because everything was done by phone calls from locations in other states.
 
Figón Arturo Sandoval, a spokesman for the EGF, called on citizens not to be fooled by this type of speakers to houses whose telephone number appears in the directories.
 
Therefore declined to provide any information and warn their children of such cases to avoid becoming victims.

Discrepancies in Numbers: How many have been killed in Juarez this year? 952? 653? 536?

Note the discrepancies between a Mexican Army report on killings in Juarez from January-June 2012: 952 
And the number provided by the Fiscalia as of June 27: 653
And no resolution of these differing numbers.  Also, as I recall, the total reported by EL DIARIO at the end of June was 536….  The total I reported was about 540.
I have been traveling the past few weeks and not able to research these things, but will attempt to find some more information later this week. If either number reported by the Army or the Fiscalia is true, then the REPORTING of the deaths in Juarez has not been accurate.  That could be the fault of the Fiscalia, the Public Ministry, some other government entity, or the newspaper.  We may never know the real number.  What these disparate reports indicate is that the real numbers are most likely unknown to any government agency responsible for reporting and that the true death toll may never be known.  As with other past reports, when government numbers do appear, they tend to be higher than previous media reports.  Molly

Juarez May murder toll: 74..lowest in 49 months

Diario has only a short report online so far today on the total number of
murders in May–74, the smallest number in the past 49 months–that is
going back to early 2008.  I’m still using the total of 122 for January, so
my figures are a little different than the monthly totals in Diario:
January 122
February 82
March 105
April 108
May 74

for a total of 491 so far in 2012. The average number of people killed in
May is down to 2.3. The yearly average is still at 3.2 people killed each
day.

Using these yearly figures:
2008 = 1,623    2009 = 2,754   2010 = 3,622**    2011 = 2,086    2012 = 491
(January – May)

The total number of homicide victims in the city of Juarez is now 10,576
since January 2008. I’m hoping that a fuller report will be in the paper
later today. molly

**Diario reports 3,111. Other media have reported 3,115. One report in
March 2011 from the Fiscalia said that the actual number was 3,900+. I use
the 3,622 number that was reported by a source in the Chihuahua Fiscalia
and pubished in this Reuters article in December 2011.

Juarez May murder toll: 74..lowest in 49 months

Diario has only a short report online so far today on the total number of
murders in May–74, the smallest number in the past 49 months–that is
going back to early 2008.  I’m still using the total of 122 for January, so
my figures are a little different than the monthly totals in Diario:
January 122
February 82
March 105
April 108
May 74

for a total of 491 so far in 2012. The average number of people killed in
May is down to 2.3. The yearly average is still at 3.2 people killed each
day.

Using these yearly figures:
2008 = 1,623    2009 = 2,754   2010 = 3,622**    2011 = 2,086    2012 = 491
(January – May)

The total number of homicide victims in the city of Juarez is now 10,576
since January 2008. I’m hoping that a fuller report will be in the paper
later today. molly

**Diario reports 3,111. Other media have reported 3,115. One report in
March 2011 from the Fiscalia said that the actual number was 3,900+. I use
the 3,622 number that was reported by a source in the Chihuahua Fiscalia
and published in this Reuters article in December 2011.

 

 

 

6 (or 8) killed yesterday in Juarez; heads and body parts dumped in Juarez; detail on murders of state prosecutor and her son on Saturday

El Diario reports 6 killed yesterday in Juarez. But, according to the reports in the paper and the press notices from the Fiscalia, I believe the actual count for May 14 is 8. One man died in the hospital after being wounded on Sunday. Another man was found inside a house, apparently beaten and left to die. Also, the dramatic event yesterday was the finding of 2
heads and 4 hands left outside of the Bar “Bandoleros” in Juarez. The article early Monday said that Sunday was a “dia blanco” no murders recorded in the city.  I am in the process of counting the numbers for the month of May and I will
post that later today.
Also posted, the case of the state prosecutor and her son murdered in their home on Saturday. The mother who worked for the Fiscalia had intervened after her son killed an off-duty federal policeman in a bar fight in 2010.  She had the murder charge downgraded to “simple homicide” result of bar fight rather than aggravated… so her son got sentence of 4 years and served 13 months. The commentators in the article say this is normal and OK–that is what defense attorneys are supposed to do–except for the little complication in this case that the mother worked for the prosecutor and not
in the capacity of defense attorney. After getting out of jail, the son tried to join the state police academy, but alas, he was rejected cause of his criminal record.  molly