Judges in the southern district of Florida unsealed indictments against Pedro Luís Martín, a former head of financial intelligence for Venezuela’s secret police, and Jesús Alfredo Itriago, a former antinarcotics official with Venezuela’s investigative police.
The Federal District, home to some nine million of the 20 million inhabitants in the Mexico City metropolitan area, saw homicides rise 21% to 566 in the first eight months of this year, according to Interior Ministry data released last week, putting the capital’s murder rate at its highest level over the same period since 1998.
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The increase in murders in Mexico City has contributed to a nationwide rise in homicide for the first time since President Enrique Peña Nieto took power in late 2012, months after the rate of killings linked to the country’s murderous drug war began to fall.
During the first eight months of this year, murders rose 5% nationwide. August was the fourth consecutive month in which the murder rate increased.
The rising toll is a big challenge for Mr. Peña Nieto, whose administration had trumpeted the decline in murders over the past two years as proof that the government’s security initiatives, such as improved coordination between crime-fighting agencies like the army and federal police, were working.
Raúl Toledo, a security consultant and former city official, said the rise in Mexico City’s crime rate coincides with estimates by local authorities of a 17% increase in drug consumption in the capital over the past three years.
Latin American countries are prone to deny the existence of drug use among their citizenry. Yet it exists.
And of course they also deny the existence of organized crime.
The Catholic Church’s traditional discomfort with modernity has cachet at this moment in American politics, especially when it is wrapped in the fashionable causes of income inequality and climate change. In this sense, Pope Francis is (inadvertently) a genius marketeer by taking crackpot attitudes about economic development and getting them a respectful hearing.
Juan Manuel Santos and the FARC leaders signed an accord in Havana under the aaegis of Raul Castro. Alvaro Uribe refers to it as an “Agreement of Impunity” (#AcuerdoDeImpunidad):
“Santos, it’s not peace that’s near, it’s the surrender to FARC and the tyranny of Venezuela.”
Santos no es la paz la que está cerca, es la entrega a Farc y a la tiranía de Venezuela
The figures show high concentrations of violence in the states of Amambay and Alto Parana, with those provinces registering 50 and 31 homicides respectively. Both of these states are major border crossings between Paraguay and Brazil. Amambay in particular isone of the most dangerous border regions in Latin America, registering a murder rate of 66.7 per 100,000 inhabitants in 2014.
Authorities say alleged members of the gang known as Guerreros Unidos testified that Mr. López was in charge of the operation to incinerate the bodies of the 43 students, who were mistaken as members of a rival gang, according to the official investigation.
Guerreros Unidos and rival Los Rojos operate in Guerrero, a center for heroin production. Numerous members of the Guerreros Unidos have been taken into custody and charged. Some of those arrested had originally confessed to the crimes but later recanted, while others have denied any wrongdoing.
Prosecutors say the students, who had commandeered long-haul passenger buses to travel to Mexico City for a planned demonstration, were mistaken as members of a rival drug gang.
More than 100 people have been detained as part of the investigation and some of them were later charged with various crimes.
The Inter-American group of experts said forensic evidence suggests such a massive fire never took place in the landfill.
Although government officials said they would review the investigation and take into account the Inter-American experts’ report, several senior Mexican prosecutors have defended the initial conclusions.
Ms. Gómez, the Attorney General, said Wednesday that she has ordered the formation of a team of experts to study more than 63,000 fragments of remains recovered from the dump and the river for viable DNA samples, and that experts of the Inter-American group could join that team.
Only 4.5% of reported crimes in Mexico are ever investigated and just 1% ever go before a judge, according to a recent study by Mexico’s National Autonomous University. The criminal conviction rate in Mexico is 1.8%.
Egyptian military forces mistakenly attacked a convoy of tourists on Sunday night, leaving at least 12 Mexicans and Egyptians dead and 10 others wounded, the country’s interior ministry has revealed.
Soldiers thought the convoy belonged to an Egyptian affiliate of the Islamic State terrorist group against which they had recently been fighting tough battles in the area. Mexico has confirmed that at least two of the dead are Mexican.
Egyptian security forces used planes and helicopters to bomb Mexican tourists and their guides, who Egyptian officials said were mistaken for terrorists, survivors told Mexican officials after the attack that left 12 dead.
An Egyptian tourism ministry spokeswoman refused to comment on the allegations and other government officials didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment.
Egypt’s Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry said the tourists were in a restricted area where military and police forces were pursuing suspected terrorists. Tourism ministry spokeswoman Rasha el Azaizy accused the tour company that organized the trip of procedural violations that she claimed led to the tragedy.
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However, a representative of the company that organized the excursion, Windows of Egypt, said the group had all necessary permits from authorities and even had a police escort when they came under fire from jet fighters and helicopters late Sunday afternoon.
The latest 3,522 prisoners to be freed will include minors, people over the age of 60, prisoners in poor health and foreigners who will be repatriated, according to the Granma newspaper. It said there will be no releases of those convicted of “crimes against state security”.
An Argentine court on Tuesday ordered the electoral board of the northern province of Tucuman not to declare any winner in the Aug. 23 gubernatorial election until a move to have the ballot overturned is resolved.
The International Commission Against Impunity in Guatemala, or Cicig, has broad powers to launch its own criminal investigations. It then works alongside Guatemala’s own attorney general’s office to prosecute cases in local courts. Its staff hails from 20 countries, from Italians who have tussled with the Mafia to Colombian anti-money-laundering experts.
Only 34 percent of U.S.-born Hispanics, and 33 percent of foreign-born Hispanics, want to increase legal immigration, said the Gallup report.
Sixty-four percent of each group of Hispanics want migration to be reduced or leveled, said Gallup, which released the report under a misleading headline, “U.S. Support for Increased Immigration Up to 25%.”
New evidence has emerged suggesting ACA guerrilla rebels in Paraguay have reunited with their cousins in the EPP, likely marking the end of a tiny guerrilla organization that has suffered several casualties and arrests of top leaders since breaking away last year.
[President Tabare] Vazquez said Uruguay has reached out to Lebanon because that’s where the refugees would like to go. Since Lebanon is not willing to welcome them, his government is asking the five Syrian families to choose another country.
Last February’s report on domestic abuse within one of the families (note that the 5 families are comprised of 80 people):
Experts commissioned by the OAS say there was a fifth bus at the scene of the crime and, despite the fact that there were students on it, it was never attacked. Armed police stopped the vehicle and the students ran off into the hills, the report says. Mexican officials considered the vehicle an insubstantial piece of evidence and failed to mention it in their report.
OAS experts now think the fifth bus was in fact an important part of the case. The organization believe that it may have concealed a shipment of heroin, the main drug trafficked in Guerrero, which feeds the United States black market.
The plot thickens while the authorities waffle:
OAS experts say the students probably took the vehicle from the bus terminal to travel to an event in Mexico City commemorating the 1968 Tlatelolco massacre without being aware of the hidden cargo. And that this fact was fully known by those who did not want that bus to make it to the march.
The problem for the commission was that the Mexican Attorney General’s Office (PGR) had not considered the bus an object of its investigation. Although the bus had been “recorded” in the report, it was given scant consideration.
The article has much more, but one thing remains clear: Somebody – most likely at the PGR- doesn’t want the truth to come out.
On August 31st Dilma Rousseff, their president, sent Congress a budget for 2016 with a gaping primary deficit (before interest payments) of 30.5 billion reais ($8 billion), or 0.5% of GDP, challenging its members to close the gap. It was a break with the sound-money practices that have underpinned Brazil’s economy. It was, some critics say, illegal. Certainly nothing similar has happened since at least 2000, when Fernando Henrique Cardoso, then the president, transformed public finances.
On a charitable view, Ms Rousseff was shocking legislators into making hard decisions rather than simply blocking her fiscal proposals. A harsher reading is that she does not know how to lead Brazil out of recession.
“I don’t believe Chapter 9 would solve Puerto Rico’s problems,” he said. “I believe what would solve Puerto Rico’s problems is the same thing that would solve Washington’s problems, and that is to restructure the way government spends its money.
“No organisation, whether it’s a government, a company or a family, can survive long-term spending more money than it takes in.”
Whatever Beijing’s motivations, the practical effect of said loans, according to Ellis [Evan Ellis of the U.S. Army War College], has “enabled countries such as Venezuela to continue as de facto sanctuaries for criminal and insurgent groups, and also, as points of entry into the region for Russia, Iran and other actors with potentially hostile intentions toward the United States.”
* “You claim to be a journalist not a politician. But Trump threw you out only because you were out of line. Your behavior was shameful.
* “Every week thousands of Cubans migrants to Mexico are arrested, beaten, extorted and swindled by the Mexican gov. in collusion with the Castro tyranny! But I’ve never heard you utter a peep against the Mexican government over this, Mr Jorge Ramos! And you claim to be a proud and vocal Mexican citizen, Mr Jorge Ramos!”
* Why not come to Mexico and try telling President Pena Nieto that deporting Cubans to Castro means they’ll live in a prison. Why not practice what you preach, Mr Ramos?!
* You denounce the U.S.–a country that opened its doors to you, yourself, sir–but you refuse to utter a peep against your native Mexico, that deports Cubans not because they’re delinquents–but as a matter of policy.”
* I’m speaking to you as someone who was jailed for 49 days in a Mexican prison for migrants and freed only after a hunger strike where I almost died.”
* “Next time you attend a Trump press conference you might ask permission to speak, and wait your turn like all the others. And since you seem to like to talk without permission come to Mexico and try that stunt!”