Reporting on the Mexican Cartel Drug War

Federal Police Mutiny in Ciudad Juarez

Sunday, August 8, 2010 |






Video courtesy of KINT)
















Federal police officers beat fellow police inspector Salomn Alarcn Olvera, aka "El Chaman" after accusing him of being linked to drug cartels and having participated in kidnappings, executions and extortions in Ciudad Juarez, northern Mexico, Saturday, Aug. 7, 2010. Around 200 federal police officers protested Saturday demanding Alarcon's dismissal. (AP Photo/Raymundo Ruiz)

The extreme stress generated from constant attacks on federal police in Ciudad Juarez and the pressures and alleged mistreatment from comandantes (commanders) erupted today when more than 200 federal policemen held a violent demonstration outside the hotel serving as their barracks.

The demonstration began at 8:30 AM when the unit of 200 men rebelled and demanded the release of one of their fellow policemen, Victor Manuel D’Cid, who was placed under arrest by orders of his superiors for being in possession of drugs.

The policemen also demanded the dismissal and investigation of their unit commander, Salomon Alarcon Olvera alias “El Chaman”, and his lieutenants whom they accused of corruption and having links to organized crime and of having planted drugs on D’Cid in retaliation for an earlier confrontation with the commander.

The police unit alerted the press who covered the incident as it unfolded. According to the rebellious police “El Chaman” and other unit leaders allegedly participate in the charging of “cuotas” or kickbacks of a portion of their salary to the men and women under their command.

The unit command was also accused of selling members of their units the weapons and ammunition and other supplies necessary for performing their duty, and of forcing the policemen to abuse both detainees and innocent civilians.

The men and women of the unit also told the press that they were threatened with death or arrest for possession of drugs if they did not comply with these orders.

As the day continued the mutineers chanted slogans and demanded the presence of the Commisioner General of the federal police forces, Facundo Rosas Rosas.

The unit leaders remained barricaded in their rooms but the mutineers succeeded in detaining and beating the comandante Alarcon and one of his lieutenants who were held as hostages.

Their rooms were sacked and an unspecified amount of drugs and stolen weapons were removed that the demonstrators said were used to incriminate and extort innocent victims.

At one point another unit of 100 heavily armed federal policemen entered the hotel grounds and attempted to free the hostages and disperse the demonstration but were repelled. The confrontation resulted in the injury of 6 policemen.

The demonstration finally ended this afternoon with the arrival from Mexico City of the Commisioner General, Rosas Rosas, and the settlement of an undisclosed agreement with the mutineers. Most of their demands were met and they returned to duty.

The four unit leaders, Comandante Salomon Alarcon “el Chaman”, Ricardo Duque “El Duque”, Joel Ortega and an unnamed officer were removed from their posts and will be investigated for the charges brought against them by their unit.

The officer whose arrest led to the demonstration, Victor Manuel D’Cid, was not immediately freed but the unit was promised that his case would be resolved fairly and quickly.

It said that Comandante Salomon “el Chaman” (or shaman) got his alias on account of his practice of the Santeria religion. Santeria is a religion with elements of voodoo, black magic and brujeria that is practiced by many drug traffickers in Mexico. It is especially common in the Gulf of Mexico and Caribbean coastal areas.

After the federal police forces returned to their task of street patrols in the afternoon hours three armed clashes with gang members were reported. One gunman and a federal policeman were reported killed and three federal policemen suffered serious wounds.

(Source material for this article was obtained from El Diario de Ciudad Juarez, the El Paso Times, Alerta Periodistica and La Polaka news)




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21 Borderland Beat Comments:

Anonymous said...

...hijole.... ¿A quien creerle? ...otra vez se nos quemaron los frijoles...

The only redeeming fact for the other mutineers on The Bounty is that they were too many... the more cops on their side, the harder it is to keep a malevolent conspiracy among them from being exposed, ¿Que no?. The other was their seeking the purifying open air and sunshine of inviting the press...I hope...

What's not so good is that this is evidence of desperation in the FEDERAL ranks; this is one step above a lynching to which the public was invited. ...not in good form for the "good" guys.

For Calderon, each news cycle keeps turning to poop. The same folks participating in these events were supposed to be the amelioration to the "mordida" happy mañosos among the municipal transitos and police.

...what a mess...maybe a good mess, but a mess, none the less...

Anonymous said...

Que viva los Policias Limpios! This is great...

Anonymous said...

This showed us that the majority of the Federal Police officers take their job seriously and exposed the corrupt police commander and his ch-horts.

Buggs said...

Nice job Gerardo, I wish more of the cops woulld start cleaning up their own ranks, their reputation is at stake.

Amazed said...

WOW! The untinkable happens! Lets be clear the reason these brave rogue police constructed an uprising to fight against corruption so they themselves can be safe while doing their job. Isn't it sad Caleron does not protect these men? I always said the only way to have a force that will be true and fight corruption is fighting fire with fire. Money is what motivates a person to join a cartel, certainly not virture. Calderon should fight back by giving high wage to the federal police who put their lives on the line for frijoles. Then though trained well heighten that with the same training the states gave the Zetas when they were under the belief they were the elite good guys, and lastly better weapons. Mx must have a federal level force that cannot be bought. That is the factor compells cartel involvement, make it equal and Mx will have the best of Mx best fighting to join the federal police. How they got 200 to join this efffort at a time when their is no way to tell bad/good guy soley on the uniform they wear is incredible...Bless these guys

Scared But Still In Mexico said...

A few years ago I was driving out of the town in MX I am in, being an American and 5 years ago I really did not appreciate the scope of the cartel action or how widespread it was. My staff told me in our cohuila border town it was the Zetas that were present. I honestly chuckled inward thinking how can that be, I see no action, but later I saw how correct they were when El Chapo came into town struggling for control of the "route". WHat I did see was just before he arrived as we were driving on that day out of town, pass the maquilas to the desolate, scary road, void of any buildings my assistant squeals and points to something on the side of the road. It was an elaborate altar. We slowed down as we passed and I went to get my camera and it was knocked from my hand. I was then told it was an altar of santeria that is built by the cartels to signify their presence or pending arrival. It truly freaked me out and I never drove the route again. There was a struggle, police commander assinated, narco messaged attached to his body, kidnappings, murders, and buildings burned....then all quiet again. I have no clue who won the "war" as the Zocalo and local media ran almost nothing about what we could see with our eyes. For me it was a pivotal moment.

Anonymous said...

Is mutiny the first step in a revolution? Could it spread? Might it be the only solution for a end to the cartels? Or is the situation in Mexico hopeless? If the PRI regains the Presidency and forms new agreements with the cartels, as it was before Calderon,what will the U.S. do? Legalize drugs? - will never happen. Seal the border? - A sure bet when the Republicans take over. Then what?

RICHARD said...

SIGNS OF HOPE FOR MEXICO, I PRAY THAT THIS IS THE BEGINNING TO THE END OF THE RAMPANT CORRUPTION.

Anonymous said...

the good cops and the bad cops, it is IMPOSSIBLE to have ALL the GOOD and HONESTY cops in the world. it can be the good and bad pilots, barristers, governments, even presidents

Abuela Chivis said...

There is a priceless photo of a not so happy commander being arrested by his own men...
wish I could attach it but will give the link, it should open to his face...we have the crying zeta...what shall this asshole be named?
http://www.diario.com.mx/nota.php?notaid=e36f2bd6e68536f7ffe4bb2fafc2d3e7

Ovemex said...

"no digo que todos somos santos, pero el 95 por ciento venimos a exponer nuestras vidas y tenemos mucho tiempo aquí rifandonos la vida para poder limpiar la ciudad"

"I'm not saying we're all saints, but 95% of us came to to put our lives on the line and we've been here a long time risking our lives so we can clean up the city."

This is a quote from one of the participating officers.

Kanchanchan said...

No, I say that 95% are saints and by their deeds and have already won a seat in heaven. We are very grateful for their personal unsung, anonymous sacrifice. Muchas Gracias PFP.

Ovemex said...

"El principal problema que tiene la policía mexicana no es la corrupción, es la baja moral y autoestima. Ninguna guerra se puede ganar en esas condiciones.

Mas de 2000 policías han sido asesinados ante la enorme indiferencia de sociedad y gobierno.

Parece que a nadie le interesa esta horrorizante cifra. No se oye ni una voz de solidaridad, luego como les exigen que sacrifiquen su vida o que no se corrompan?"

This comment was sent to EL NORTE from a man in San Pedro. I have never thought about this, and sadly after reading it, it really hit home.

Corruption, violence, extortion, betrayl: Nobody trusts anybody anymore. More often than not when news is published about a police officer being killed, you will find a flood of insensitive comments such as "one less dirty cop".

There are still many, the majority, who ARE risking their lives for Mexico everyday. These men and women in uniform, for the most part, are either lumped together with the "bad" or simply forgotten.

Abuela Chivis said...

Thanks Ovemex for posting that comment, it really made me stop and think deeply. I cannot imagine being emotionally beaten from all sides because one cannot distinguish good from bad so we walk and talk assumptions. I think this supports my suggestion that money is the motivator to join cartels and the probre policia get paid shit and then hated and mistrusted by everyone and yet they put their lives on the line, they must be respected, paid fairly, trained well and properly weaponed. All police of Mexico, yes there will always be an element of bad guys in any group, but chances are greater of sucess with a force of determination and high morale. It really is so sad.

Justin B said...

Somebody said, "They don't have a prayer".
Nope, they've got mine.

And everybody said, Aye.

Anonymous said...

New federales have arrived in Juarez, officers who were involved in the rebellion will be rotated out of Juarez to new posts. Officials maintain that it is a 'routine' rotation.

"De forma extraoficial se supo que vienen a relevar a los efectivos que participaron en la protesta del sábado."

Se buscó a voceros de la Secretaría de Seguridad Pública federal para conocer el motivo de la llegada de más policías, pero no estuvieron disponibles.

Sin embargo, fuentes de la corporación señalaron que son relevos normales que se realizan en diferentes periodos y que en esta ocasión sería más de 200 los que arribaron.

Este movimiento se dio luego de que el sábado unos 300 agentes de la Policía Federal (PF) estallaron por la mañana una rebelión contra sus jefes, a quienes acusaron de corrupción y extorsión.."

Anonymous said...

Why isn't Calderone paying these officers?Does he want them to roll-over to the Cartels? Especially in these economic times, police need to be paid fairly for putting their lives on the line, I don't know of anyone who would put their lives on the line for $79/mo.That's just assinine. I'm just saying.

Anonymous said...

I'm so proud of them! I knew Mexico still had a soul!

Anonymous said...

Mexico needs a rebellion of good people. But I have friends in Juarez who say the Federales continue to knock on their doors seizing their weapons. How can the common folk defend themselves against this corruption?

This is why the US needs to FIGHT valiantly for it's right to bear arms!!

Anonymous said...

amen on the right to keep and bear arms...if we lose our right s...in 10 years the USA will be worse than Mezico

Anonymous said...

What about Ciudad Ixtepec? And al the PFP guys were released by the army? No charges? The chief of PFP should be firing those guys. Obviously they were overlooked when they fired the 3,400 recently.

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