at least 23 dead Tues and Wed in Nuevo Leon state

In case there are any doubts as to the continuing violence in different places in Mexico as summarized yesterday in Jim Creechan’s post, this was posted this morning in REFORMA… Yesterday, 12 people were killed in Nuevo Leon and so far this morning, 11 more people have been assassinated in the same region.

A google translation is below… molly
Executed 11 reported in Nuevo Leon
Reform | 08.29.2012 | 8:51
After a day Monterrey that left 12 executed in Nuevo Leon, this morning continued the violence that left 11 people killed.
These crimes, which occurred between the first minutes of Wednesday and 7:30 am in several municipalities of the state, are related to organized crime.
On Tuesday, the violence claimed the lives of 12 people, four decapitated, dismembered and seven executed one.
This morning, judicial police and experts of the Office began an investigation of the cases, the first recorded in the municipality of Santa Catarina, where three men were shot.
The discovery of the bodies was recorded near the 0:40 hours in an alley located between a vacant lot and a factory in the streets Solidarity and Cuauhtémoc, Colonia Las Palmas.
The three youths, aged between 18 and 25 years old, had a bullet wound in his forehead, apparently 9mm.
A police source reported that relatives of the victims said that gunmen had raised the young as they gathered in a house in the Colonia La Fama 4.
A second incident occurred in Escobedo, where were found the bodies of two people executed in an abandoned van on the edge of the Northwest Bypass, on kilometer 24 of the road.
In Cienega de Flores, around 5:00 pm, a man was found maimed in the streets of Villa de Alcalá Fractionation, on the border with Zuazua.
Furthermore, in two points of the Municipality of Fisheries were found the dismembered remains of two others.
In the municipality of Montemorelos two men died and a woman was seriously injured when attacked with bullets as they traveled in a van.
The attack occurred at Kilometer 191 of the National Road in the community of Buenavista.
Finally, one person died and another was wounded when attacked on the road dead-Juarez Apodaca, Apodaca, opposite Colonia Pueblo Nuevo, around 7:30 am.
Just on Monday, Gen. Noe Sandoval Alcazar, Commander of the Fourth Military Region, said the criminal group Los Zetas had lost strength due to the coordinated efforts of the Army to the state and municipal police of Nuevo Leon.
State Security spokesman, Jorge Domene even attributed the alleged failure to blows against bands that gave the state authority.
However, the violence raged in the state yesterday.

Confrontations reported in Mexico State; 30 dead, unofficial outcome…PROCESO

There were several “hot-spots” of violence in Mexico reported this weekend. I will try to send more info and a summary later.  As far as I can tell, this last one is the most serious (30 dead) and I can find nothing in the English-language press on it… This one is also unique in the LACK of information provided.

Here’s a quick translation–it is very literal on purpose to emphasize the lack of real information in the report… Note the conditional terms… We might hope to find out more about this confrontation, but at the least, we must ask: if there are no bodies, how do we know that there are 30 people dead? If there are no bodies, how do we know that the dead are “sicarios?” If there are no bodies, how do we know how many are dead? How does anyone know who took bodies away? As well as this report from the military in the region, would it not be just as logical to assume that the military or a paramilitary force went into the area, killed a bunch of people and then did away with the bodies? But since residents of the zone apparently saw and heard the shooting, the military was not able to deny that something happened…?  Just asking…  molly
 Confrontations reported in Mexico State; 30 dead, unofficial outcome…
At least 30 presumed sicarios dead is the balance of two confrontations that took place this afternoon (Sunday) between armed groups in the south of the State of Mexico, according to security forces. There are still no official figures on the number of dead or injured.

Supposedly, the bodies were taken away from the scene by presumed members of criminal groups that participated in the confrontations, the sources added. Sources from the 22nd Military Zone reported that their troops went to the area after learning about reports of the shootout, but they did not find any bodies. They indicated that elements assigned to Tejupilco went to the zone and that some of the residents told them that they heard shots for some period of time; others said that they had seen bodies, reported the sources. Each criminal group could have taken the bodies away, the source added.

The first event, lasting a little more than an hour, took place in the community Caja de Agua, in the municipality of Luvianos, and in which presumed members of La Familia Michoacana and residents of the zone participated. Afterwards, a group opposed to the Knights Templar joined the confrontation. The battles then moved toward the Cerro de la Culebra in the same locality. Vehicles of both groups were left behind, destroyed by the impacts of high caliber ammunition that was exchanged during more than three hours. Until now, according to military reports, no persons were reported to be detained. 

Elements of the Secretariat of Citizen Security and of the Attorney General of the State of Mexico arrived at the scene. Federal forces had already arrived in order to verify the events. At least 30 soldiers are patrolling the zone.

Juarez business booming… Forbes & Global Post


Big businesses boom in an unlikely Mexican city

note the repeat of the 60,000 figure…realistic estimates posted on Frontera List, Reforma and LeMonde are in the 100,000-120,000 range; the Mexican government is no longer separating murders into “cartel-related” and other…

Would towns on the US side of the border be envious if jobs paid $500 per month? A $500 per month job (40 hours per week for 4 weeks comes to about $3 per hour… And actually, the Mexican work week is about 48 hours… So, less… Wages earned by workers on assembly lines in Juarez plants are “much less” as noted in the clip. Nowhere in the articles does the reporter ask, nor is any business leader quoted as saying how much less… Well, it is about $50 per week… or $200 per month… or for a 48 hour week about $1.00 per hour. I know for a fact that the workers in Juarez on factory assembly lines cannot afford to eat at the US fast-food chains mentioned elsewhere in the article...

Just who are the “They…” who “are able to keep violence at bay”? No mention of HOW they do it… Most likely they have come to an agreement to pay the extortion asked of them…  Hundreds of small businesses have not been able to pay and their businesses have been burned and many business owners have been killed or run out of the city and/or the country. These deaths are chalked up in the “drug-related” tally… Yet, there is ample testimony that the extortionists in many cases are police and other law enforcement officers…



Mexico, before and after Calderon’s drug war…LATimes

Still no mention of the INEGI numbers released last week and other releases of numbers from the PGR and other Mexican agencies and reported in the Mexican press and on the Frontera List recently.  And in Le Monde.  From following the Mexico news for many years (Frontera List existed back into the 1990s) I archived stories of the violence spiking in 2004-2005… Actually, the real hotspots at that time were in Nuevo Laredo and other cities in the eastern border region…as well as in Chihuahua and Michoacan as reported here.  The full report mentioned in the LATimes article is available here.



Human rights and the Mexican military…Council on Foreign Relations

For those who care to look back at the record, the reports of severe human rights abuses in the current Mexican context first came to light just a few DAYS after the Mexican Army troops came to Juarez in March 2008. Municipal police walked out in protest; citizens protested home invasions and abductions, notably in the Valle de Juarez. One of the most vocal protesters was Josefina Reyes–she was later murdered by the Mexican Army… Here are her words from early summer, 2008:
“Now you see all these big billboards, ‘We [the army] have come to help you’ — but it isn’t true. They have come to pillage us, to ransack our homes. They take the food in the refrigerator, jewelry, anything . . . and they destroy property. It is not a secret who they are.”
There are many Mexicans who have documented the abuses carried out by the Mexican military against the Mexican people.  It is about time that the international community take note…  molly

Commentary Magazine on Juarez; homicides increase in central Chihuahua while decreasing in the north

Here is another comment on the Washington Post article,  this one from conservative magazine, Commentary.

I don’t agree with the “failed state” conclusion of this article either, but it at least points out the contradictions in the Post article that were stated by sources and then essentially ignored… I’m especially struck by this (it is a quote from the WaPo article cited by Commentary:
The criminal organizations that brought Juarez to the brink have not disappeared. “What we have seen,” said Peniche, the prosecutor, “is these groups have moved to other parts of the state.”

Click here for an article from El Diario today that addresses this very point: while murder and other serious crime is down in Juarez and the rest of the “northern zone” of Chihuahua, it is on the rise in other parts of the state.


As I was driving home today and listening to the news about Todd Akin and “legitimate rape“…

I thought, well, what we have been seeing in Mexico for (at least) the last 6 years is a government that says there is homicide and then, there is “legitimate homicide.” And government mouth-pieces ranging from mayors and police chiefs of Juarez, to governors of Chihuahua and on up to Secretaries of Gobernacion, Defense, and Public Security and on up to President Calderon himself have consistently said that “90 percent of the dead are criminals being killed by other criminals.” [legitimate homicide…] The recent Washington Post article quotes numerous government spokespersons in Juarez reinforcing this idea that all of the killing happened between criminals — “legitimate homicides”– and government forces are now bringing calm to the city… All this at the very moment when the Mexican government is being forced to admit that it cannot legitimately classify homicides at all since it lacks the capability to investigate more than one or two percent of the crimes and now the national statistical agency says that despite all the claims of “winning the drug war,” there were more homicides (by far) in 2011 than in any other year since Calderon took office (or any year prior to that since the Mexican Revolution (1910-1920)… Here is the REFORMA article from today on the new INEGI numbers.  I’ll post something more comparative tomorrow…a GOOGLE translation of the REFORMA piece is below…and a little chart I am working on comparing the INEGI releases from 2011 and today. According to my first look at this new data, with estimates of what will happen for the remaining months of Calderon’s term, we are looking 116,869 homicides during the sexenio. And these are all connected to real government data and real body counts. NOT including estimates of disappeared people or bodies yet to be uncovered from clandestine graves… [feel free to check my arithmetic]  Molly Molloy
27,199 murders recorded in 2011
Chihuahua, according to INEGI, is the state with the highest number of violent deaths with an average of 131 murders per 100,000 inhabitants
By REFORM / Writing
Mexico City (August 20, 2012). – In 2011 there were 27,199 intentional homicides in Mexico, the highest in the six-year period, according to data released by the National Institute of Statistics and Geography (INEGI). The figures are derived from the information provided by the administrative records of the Registry Offices 723 4000
Civil Registry and 96 thousand prosecutor agencies that provide monthly data on deaths accidental and violent, precise INEGI in a statement. The Institute notes that the company with the highest number of deaths was Chihuahua, which occurred in
average of 131 murders per 100,000 inhabitants, and the lowest rate was Yucatan, with three cases. “To facilitate comparison of data from homicides per 100,000 inhabitants, was an exercise by the INEGI, for population estimates for each of the years of the series to be present, consistent with the results of the Census of Population and Housing 2010, “says the Institute. “So these calculations will not match other data generated from official projections current population are based on the Second Population and Housing 2005 and conciliation
population of 2005. ” According to the annual breakdown presented by the Institute, in 2006 there were 10,452 deaths, while in 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2010 occurred 8,867, 14 006, 19,803 and 25,757, respectively. However, last year, according to the cut last July, have not finished it processes generation of statistics, the figure reached 27,199 deaths.
Copyright © Grupo Reforma Information Service
And here is a comment on the earlier post by my colleague at Cal State Northridge on the news media complicity in this continuing falsifying of the record:
Amazing (but not surprising) to think this is not a big story in the U.S. Plus, a great example of how government agencies shape and manipulate reality. The Mexican government definition of drug-related crime is as bogus as the definition of gang-related crime in the U.S. The purpose, of course, is different, but the effect has been catastrophic for poor people in both instances.
The result of this, as pointed out by Molly, is that news media organizations have been reporting Mexico’s government figures without challenging the government, which means a reduction of the size of the impact on Mexican society. Instead of 50 or 60,000 drug-related killings, we should be talking about 100,000+. Think of Vietnam: 50,000 U.S. soldiers killed (and the impact on American society). Now, imagine double that size with a population half the size of the U.S. during Vietnam. Nobody in Mexico has remained untouched by this. And this is not the end yet… From Jose Luis Benavides
  INEGI total homicides reported Aug 2012* INEGI total homicides reported July 2011+ SNSP
2005 9,921 9,921  
2006 10,452 10,452  
2007 8,867 8,867  
2008 14,006 14,006  
2009 19,803 19,803  
2010 25,757 24,374  
2011 27,199  
2012 (Jan-June estimate from SNSP)# 10,617    
July-Dec est. @ 1770 per month 10,620    
TOTAL 2007-2012 Calderon’s term 116,869   104,977 (estimate SNSP as per Reforma, Aug 15 2012 + July-Dec 2012 est.)&

Rick Perry: US immigration plan doesn’t alter state law…AP

In light of recent stories indicating that President Calderon may join the faculty of the University of Texas at Austin when he leaves office and that he says he rec’d death threats early in his term, it is nice to know that Gov. Perry of Texas is going to do everything in his power to deny legal status to Mexicans (and others) who might qualify for the Obama administration’s deferred deportation program because of their long-term residency in the US…  I assume President Calderon will quailfy for other visa programs. The positive side of this is that he may have to come face-to-face with hundreds or thousands of Mexicans-in-exile who have left their country due to dangers to their lives and who are now seeking asylum in the US. Many of these people are living in Texas.
I guess Gov. Perry does not want to be out-machoed by his counterpart, Janet Brewer of Arizona… It will be interesting to see what New Mexico governor Martinez does in this regard. molly

Mexican government admits it doesn’t know how many homicides are related to drug war…

Yesterday, REFORMA reported that a spokesman for the federal government in Mexico stated that this administration will not release a new number of “homicides related to organized crime” before the end of Calderon’s sexenio.  The main focus of the article is that this will not be done because the government cannot accurately determine the causes of the homicides. This is exactly what I have been saying consistently on this list and elsewhere for several years.

 The government will release the complete tally of homicidios dolosos or intentional homicides as tallied by SNSP.  The numbers I’ve report most often use INEGI data for the earlier years of the sexenio and SNSP for 2011 forward.  I think that these numbers are somewhat higher because INEGI data does not separate the homicidios dolosos from other homicides that are what would be classified as negligent or accidental in the US… The differences are not huge. The REFORMA article gives a total of 94,357 through June 2012; INSIGHT CRIME says the SNSP figure for Jan-June 2012 is 10,617. If the average homicides per month (1,770) is extrapolated through the end of November 2012 (when Calderon’s term ends) the total will be 19,464. Added to the previous SNSP number, we would have a total of about 103,204.  I think the eventual number will be higher than that and considering the government’s political motives, I’m comfortable with my current estimate of 110,000. As some of the national figures (including Javier Sicilia) quoted in the article say, these numbers do not include the numbers of missing and disappeared people, nor the bodies that are still being found buried in clandestine graves in many places in the country.
The content of the government spokesman’s statement is almost exactly what I have been saying for years–that the criteria used to determine what is or is not an “organized crime related homicide” is bogus:
He further explained: “They set the criteria and said, ‘well, let’s see…if they used weapons of heavy caliber, if they moved the body, if the body is bound, if there are signs of torture…if two or more of these (characteristics) are present then the homicide could be attributed to organized crime ‘. They had some methodological support for what was published but it was only an approximation, as if they are just saying, ‘yes, this could be organized crime,’ ” he said.


I will look around for more statistics to see if a better estimate is possible. It is interesting that this admission by the government is first published by REFORMA. REFORMA’s oft-cited “Ejecumetro” has for years used the same or similar criteria to determine which killings are related to organized crime and these much lower numbers have been frequently reported in the Mexican national media. The REFORMA data are also used by the Transborder Institute (TBI) in their monthly publications on the drug war. It will be interesting to see how this policy change–admission–backtracking (what else could we call it?) by the Calderon administration will be treated in the international media–if it is noticed at all.
Borderland Beat has a better translation of the Reforma article. Also take a look at the comments.
Here is one of them:
Does anyone know why all that is going in Mexico hardly makes it on the evening news here in the US?
It’s like the domestic dispute next door that everyone is aware of but we all want to pretend its not happening. It really is strange.
More Mexican government officials report that the new database for compiling homicide and missing persons data nationally is extremely behind and indefinitely delayed. A Google translation is below:

New national database for homicides delayed

Prado Henia

Agency Reform | 08.17.2012 | 22:24

Federal District-The new database that will store the numbers of intentional homicide and missing persons, which was negotiated by state attorneys and the Attorney General, has not been able to start walking.

The reasons for the delay of this new registration agreement over a year ago is that there is partial information, wrong or delay in delivering it.

An early start date for this database, set for May 12 was postponed and finally determined that as of June 15 would begin to flow data to concentrate on this record.

“The National Conference reaffirms its commitment to fulfill the mandate of the CNSP to establish databases nationally, for registration of intentional homicide and missing persons.

“For this, the law enforcement agencies are committed to providing complete records of these databases later than June 15 this year, expand, update and validate the respective information permanently,” said May 24 the entitled the PGR, Marisela Morales.

Federal District connection, Jaime Lopez-Aranda, head of the National Information Center of the Executive Secretariat of the National Public Security System (SESNSP), said that while the collection of information is substantial homicide, shall be at least one other months to complete the count. “The database of voluntary manslaughter is compiling the PGR will allow us to have more accurate data of victimology, for example, and not only the preliminary investigation, it secretes the victim’s age, sex of victim, location.

“We are really behind. Promised for June 15, I hope it comes out in September and October, because many entities provided information as we had to be delivered, then you should return it, “he said.

This new database and updated monthly to the SESNSP on its website will be the only references that citizens have about the violent murders occurred in the country.

Neither breaks down the number of executed by organized crime. (Agency Reform)


Molly Molloy

former Chihuahua governor Jose Reyes Baeza investigated for links to Juarez Cartel

The federal attorney general is now investigating former governor Reyes Baeza for protecting Juarez Cartel operatives…
This is worth looking at in terms of determining the origins of the explosion of violence in Juarez that began in late 2007… Actually, according to this account, the stage was set several years earlier… A google translation follows.  The article also appears in the newspaper, OMNIA.
Former governor Reyes Baeza responds to allegations of his ties to Juarez cartel published yesterday in Reporte Indigo. The Diario reporter contacted the PGR which says there is no investigation.  However, El Diario had reported on Reyes Baeza’s links to organized crime back in March 2010, based on information received from the PGR. 
One of the more interesting allegations revealed by Julio Porras–the protected witness who served as link between cartel and governor–is that he met Amado Carrillo in 1990 through Army General Acosta Chaparro. This general was assassinated earlier in 2012. 
The arrangement with Reyes Baeza included payment of at least 3 million pesos before his election with the agreement that when elected he would appoint a state police chief chosen by the Juarez cartel. According to Porras’ statement, Reyes Baeza agreed and named Lauro Abelardo Venegas Aguirre as head of the State Investigative Agency. None of this is difficult to believe as such allegations against Reyes Baeza and the state attorney general Patricia Gonzalez were made continuously during their administrations. It is also interesting that the PGR investigation apparently began during the administration of Arturo Chavez Chavez as Attorney General in 2010. Chavez Chavez is from Chihuahua and also was alleged to be on the payroll of the Juarez Cartel.
A google translation of the article is below…  molly
Reyes Baeza denies pact with cartel
Sandra Rodriguez Nieto
The Journal | 07.31.2012 | 00:05
An alleged pact between the Juarez Cartel and former Governor Jose Reyes Baeza, in which the first support the 2004 election campaign and the second to the criminal organization would not only operate but to appoint the head of the State Judicial then, Report was released yesterday by Indigo.
According to the article available in the print edition of the medium with the title “Another governor in sight,” the former president of the PRI connection to drug trafficking was revealed to the Federal Government by the drug trafficker Julio Porras and is part of the preliminary RMP / SIEDO/UEIDCS/313/2010.
Asked yesterday about it, Baeza told the newspaper that published allegations are false and that they said in 2010 against former Attorney General Arturo Chavez Chavez and before the prosecutor Marisela Morales today, then head of the Office of Special Investigations into Organized Crime (OFDI).
The case cited is rooted in a statement that occurred in 2010 of a person who under the protection of a protected witness, said the alleged involvement of various public officials, where I include, in criminal acts allegedly occurred in the year 1998 and 2004, “said Reyes Baeza in a position letter sent to this medium.
“At the time I made clarifications to the Attorney General of the Republic, Mr. Arturo Chavez Chavez, and to the degree Marisela Morales Ibañez, then assistant attorney of the SIEDO, showing that those complaints were not only false but malicious,” the former president and the date member National Executive Committee of the PRI.
Meanwhile, although Indigo Report cites paragraphs and the number of the preliminary investigation, the Attorney General’s Office said yesterday that the research did not exist.
“There is not. SIEDO has no such investigation, “said José Luis Manjarrez The Journal, Chief Information Officer at the PGR headquarters in Mexico City.
The article adds that Indigo Report on the investigation, the protected witness is identified as Ramiro Chavez, but the data provided “presumed” it is the drug trafficker Julio Porras, who worked for the Juarez Cartel and who is imprisoned in USA.
“Between January and February 2004, to be sure that Jose Reyes Baeza seek the governorship by the PRI, we agreed to support him in his bid to the amount of three million pesos, which would bring me,” says the statement of witness, As Reported Indigo. “In return, they asked that when he was governor, left, among other things, appoint the head of the state police, as this would facilitate the operation of their business,” adds the same date.
Report Indigo Publishing is not the first that mentions the former president’s alleged ties to drug trafficking, and specifically with Julio Porras, and the existence of a federal investigation against the former governor.
Since March 2010-year for which the preliminary data-, the former state public safety secretary, Raul Grajeda Dominguez, said in an interview with The Journal that the federal government had opened a case against Reyes Baeza.
On the same occasion, Grajeda also delivered to the medium an unpublished manuscript mentioned that, when Julio Porras was attacked in May 2006, received state protection of both the president and the then Attorney Patricia Gonzalez.
“The operator of the Juarez Cartel, JL, suffering serious injuries were accidental. A point of death, arises as a result, the civil war to take its place. Of the four groups of the cartel, Julio Porras tried to help one of them, ‘Doctor’, and this angered the JL 02 “Grajeda wrote in his text.
“The point is that JL is recovered, and sent them to kill Porras in Chihuahua capital, where he died his escort as he escapes and is saved. Having applied for protection of the attorney, is obtained, with permission of the governor, on the premises of public safety complex in the area of ​​Attorney, “the manuscript.
The information was published on March 3, 2010 in The Journal with the headline “Former police chief accuses Reyes Baeza to protect drug”, which also included an interview with then-president who said he did not know Julio Porras.
Information disseminated by Indigo Report says the pact between the former governor and the Juarez Cartel or the Carrillo Fuentes “would have been accomplished and, once elected, Reyes Baeza respected the request of the seudoempresarios. The chosen one was Lauro Aguirre Abelardo Venegas, who was appointed director of the State Investigation Agency. “
The article also abounds in the history of Porras, who appear in the preliminary inquiry stating that he met Amado Carrillo since 1990 through a court officer was “unconditional” General Arturo Acosta Chaparro, killed on April 20, 2012 .
“From these relations with former judicial bosses and lieutenants, Ramiro Chavez met Vicente Carrillo, who years later gave her links with the state government in turn, Jose Reyes Baeza, whom he met when he was president Chihuahua City, “says Indigo Report article.
“Chavez said Vicente Carrillo Fuentes got to hand over $ 60,000 monthly payroll of the police forces, primarily the controls having the rank of commanders,” the statement said.
Willing to provide information
In the letter sent yesterday to The Journal, Baeza says willing to provide information to any authority that requires it.
“I was always fully prepared to bring proceedings in any federal or state, when required. As someone convinced of the rule of law, the rule of law and respectful of the institutions, I have full confidence in them, so I think this kind of tendentious leaks and notes payable to the investigations bit serious and responsible, “he said.

“I repeat, openly available to any public authority, state or federal, who legitimately require information from me, refusing to advance into the game leading to the biased remarks and notes that staff pursue the prestige and not the search for truth “he said. (Sandra Rodriguez Nieto / The Journal)