Reporting on the Mexican Cartel Drug War

The Treatment of Americans in Mexican Prisons

Saturday, September 29, 2012 |

Chivis Martinez Borderland Beat
Julio and Tony Americans serving time in a Mexico City prison
You may have read Vato's post regarding the complaints of Narcos in American prisons, now we take a look at how Americans are treated in Mexican prisons. It doesn’t differ much from the treatment of Mexicans in Mexican prisons,  however the distinction is critical, Americans are targets by all other prisoners,  as it is thought they have money to steal.

The conditions are deplorable, making conditons in the US prisons Club Med by comparison.  It is unfortunate that Mexican narcos can't spend time in Mexican prisons, but truth be told they would have it far differently than the conditions in this video.  Money buys everything wanted in Mexican prisons.
 
I had the “opportunity” to vist a prison as a “guest” of the prison director.  If I ever go on a return visit I will not eat before I go.  If the conditions don’t turn the stomach the smell surely will.  Perhaps it is because water is scarce in the prisons, water for drinking or enough to partially fill a bucket to bathe.  It is estimated that bathing occurs every couple of weeks.  Water and food are withheld from prisioners for 23 or the 24 hours they are locked in a cell., prisoners will bang on cell walls and bars chanting "Water! Water! Water!", going almost a complete day without.   The meal they are provided is slop, cooked in a kitchen that shares its space with the sewer and rats as big as small cats.
One of the rats sharing the kitchen with prison cooks and sewer below

Half of the food is stolen and “sold” as barter.  This means the meal will run out before all prisoners are served.  Starving bad guys are not happy and this can lead to violence.  Prisoners have created a system of trade, either by work such as tatooing or gambling.

Killing and being killed is the number one issue of each prisoner.  Killings are rampant and Americans are targeted by just about everyone and the suicide rate is extremely high.  Often to escape the conditions will lead one to death, or rivals on the outside will send a message “we have your family, die or they will be killed”

This full length video follows the lives of the inmates of two of the worlds toughest prisons. Julio and Tony are former LA gang members serving time for homicide in Mexico Citys high security prison - Santa Martha.

Seen as outsiders with money they have both been attacked many times but they are more than willing to fight back Lurigancho Prison in Peru was built for 3600 inmates but now houses nearly 10,000, with only 100 unarmed guards. To control the prisoners the authorities have handed over the running of the prison to a council of inmate leaders.  This video is a rare look inside a Mexican prison and its every day life.

Water and a "meal" are given once a day to the "lucky"
Kitchen
 Full length video
 Now a look at the living conditions and luxury cells capos and the wealthy enjoy in the same Mexico City prison and others in Chihuahua and throughout Mexico.  It will cost 6000USD per month but nothing is off limits.  Sex, drugs, VIP game rooms with fully stocked bars, 3 and 4 room air conditioned "cells", with refrigerators, microwaves and stoves, living areas with sound systems, and Television/DVD players.  In VIP sections there is work out area with equipment and patio areas with tables with umbrellas, and outdoor kitchens and bars. Chef's and women are brought in for parties.
If you read the book the last narco you will remember the desciption of El Chapos cell and surroundings.  These EFE photos will give you a visual.

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44 Borderland Beat Comments:

DFL said...

The prison where the Americans are attcked Looks just about right to me. Don't do the Crime if you can't do the time!! Fuck those two piece of Shit L.A. Gang banger ass wipes. We should have an exchange program with Mexico. Commit a crime here and that will be their destiney and vise versa!! Fuck these assholes. Society is better off with them in what ever prison hell they dug themselves into. Its their Fault. What went around came around!!

Anonymous said...

These pictures are the same pix tht were used to describe Pablo Escobar's prison time living conditions!!!

Anonymous said...

I seen something similar in Venezuela on a documentary it had the top boss of the prison living with cell phones, air conditioning unit, flat screen tv, etc, and half of the prison was for the people who were of no use, they slept on the floor. It was made by a guy called Ross Kemp, these prisons have the right treatment but it should be for everyone to have it tough no food or water even the top bosses but alas we know it's not like this in reality.

Anonymous said...

nice to see that the big Capos that are apprehended have the life of luxury when they get in prison. What a joke! The system is so damn corrupt!

Anonymous said...

It won't play it in Europe it says nat geo blocked it on copyright grounds, anyone have it by a YouTube link? Cheers.

Chivis said...

youtube:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ODA86LD
auCE&feature=player_embedded

as for the photos those at top i made from vid
at bottom they are from EFE and El Universal also had them about a year ago but gave credit to efe.

Out Yonder said...

I lived in Thailand for 7 years. Get this- prisoners don't get fed in Thailand by the authorities. Rather, families must bring bags of rice, vegetables, etc. so the inmate can cook for himself on makeshift open fires. Otherwise you would have to barter/buy that food on the inside, or starve.

THE FLIPSIDE is you can have whatever you want so a mob boss and live like a king inside.

It's hard for me to shed tears for crooks and bad guys but I do believe in prisoner's rights. You can't keep them in subhuman conditions.

The #1 prison issue? Overcrowding.

Anonymous said...

Thanks a lot Chivis for the link, keep up the great work. Saludos from Europe.

Chivis said...

Anonymous said...
Thanks a lot Chivis for the link, keep up the great work. Saludos from Europe.
September 29, 2012 5:02 PM Chivis said...
you're welcome. we have the same issue in mexico often we are not able to play videos sent. saludos

note to all the vid is on the national geo website i saw it on the nat geo channel. I believe it was released in the later part of 2009. My visit to the prison was subsequent to this and all i can say is the documentary does well but in person it is worse. the conditions have worsen as the overcrowing has become even a greater issue. though I have little compassion for known killers not all the people in prison have been convicted or even tried. in mx you are guilty until proven otherwise. my connection was to bring basic supplies to central american migrants.

95% of all crimes in Mexico are NOT solved
of those there is only a 2% conviction rate

Anonymous said...

This show was on National geography channel like a year ago.. those two guys are not American.. they were raised in the US , but then deported for big crimes in LA.. so yeah they deserve what they get... The same for every other criminal..

Anonymous said...

i dont feel sorry for those inmates they murdered someone they deserve to suffer they all deserve to suffer.

Chivis said...

@6:10pm Nat Geo who made documentary. They say they are "Americans" clear as can be on the video and on the promo. Both were born in Losa Angeles California, but have dual citizenship.

When Julio killed the 2 guys that tried to kill him he was arrested and said he wanted to be sent to Mexico to be tried under Mexican law. He would have had 3 strikes in calif and would be in prison for life or death row.

In mexico he only got 17 years. If he can stay alove he will still have a life outside prison. I have no compassion either, but lets keep the facts straight. maybe you should watche the vid.

Anonymous said...

That's good food for a killer. If I was cooking there I will mix some shit in it to give it extra flavor you just have to remember all the inocent people they killed

Anonymous said...

Great job putting it altogether. It is a nice comparative to US Prisons. Perhaps you can put together a post highlighting them as well. As a dual citizen I know this is confusing but it depends on the treaty held between the two countries. In this case he flees to Mexico to escape a lethal injection, really pretty smart because when the Mexican authorities caught him he elected his right under Mexican law to be tried in Mexico under Mexican law. I am guessing you also are dual citizenship? Not all countries allow this option. Mexico should end this practice. I don’t believe it absolves Julio is the US, but I could be wrong.

Anonymous said...

These dipshits get free room and board free rat stew and all the sex they could handle! If you.ask me that's the real crime!!

Anonymous said...

In the video there is 3 Americans, but that isn't the point, this I am sure is to highlight how ridiculous the claims of narcos in EU making such complaints.

Anonymous said...

what is the name of that mexican prison on an island? suppose to be straight up prison no one gets a pass

Anonymous said...

I am looking foward to reading that these two peices of shit died in prison.. so if anyone finds out please post a link. I will do the same...thanks

Anonymous said...

And now a quick look at the prisons that make every other prison look like an outhouse, norwegian prisons. Comfort and luxury all the way.



http://www.time.com/time/photogallery/0,29307,1989083,00.html

Anonymous said...

I would rather be looking after myself with other prisoners,than be on no human contact in a"clean"supermax.Shit some places i've stayed on travels are worse than this.People eat rats all over the world,nice big fat field ones.Its your own perspective,i would rather be doin my time with others.Then the hierarchy kicks in.Keep yourself in shape religiously people are a bit less eager to fuck with you if you in good shape and buffed up.

Anonymous said...

Florencia 13 all the way to Mexico. The F13 produces hardcore gangstas, they always represent the hood well wherever they go. They tend to be pretty aggressive and arrogant too cause they back it up.

Anonymous said...

Las Islas Marias .. I believe ...

Anonymous said...

12:42 pm I didn't know forencia 13 had their own cheerleaders! They must be hardcore.

Anonymous said...

Yeah Florencia sounds pretty gay to me. Everybody in Mexico needs to go to jail as far as I'm concerned, including womean and children who keep producing these scumbags.

Anonymous said...

pinche culo, one of this days culo....

Anonymous said...

I actually remember going to see an uncle in Matamoros and I also expected the same shitty conditions. However, when we went in to his quarters it was air conditioned and they had some tvs set up on the walls with some round tables as well. The conditions for him were obviously not what I saw coming. Very strange. I never knew what he was in there for or did I ever see him again, but he obviously knew someone.

Anonymous said...

Go see Get the Gringo with Mel Gibson.

Anonymous said...

Man,this crazy,we even got an argument about who got the toughest prisons,US/Mexico?
I would rather be with people than be locked down 24/7 no human contact.Wherever that may be.

Anonymous said...

Lol yea Fuck florenica or whatever the Fuck these gayboys call themselves. If your such a badass why don't you get a college diploma your Fucking losers

Anonymous said...

This is so sad nobody deserves to live in this conditions they are people not animals.
By being in a cell is enough!

Anonymous said...

CHIVIS YOU SHOULD COVER THE STORY , ABOUT THE BORDER PATROL AGENT SHOOTING THAT WOMAN FROM CALIFORNIA..

Chivis said...

@12:13AM

Wow what a sad story that is, I am not sure what happened, the BPA says she was trying to run into him, but sure doesn't make sense. Anyway, sorry but this site is Mexican Drugwar related info and news....Paz, Chivis

Anonymous said...

10/1 5:47PM,

Yea you say that now...but isolation 24/7 sounds a lot better than getting your "shit" pushed in by a bunch of hardcore gangbangers (as in raped)! The only way to survive in prison is you have to have something to offer or your made into a slave! It's pretty much survival of the strongest...no one does time on their own without encountering "problems!" Like they say prisons are run by the inmates with rules of their own making...not the prison officials!

Anonymous said...

"Yea you say that now...but isolation 24/7 sounds a lot better than getting your "shit" pushed in by a bunch of hardcore gangbangers (as in raped)"
What kind of inmate would you be?What could you do to someone who wanted to fuck your ass?
The worst thing you can possibly do to hurt or kill them,simple as that.Believe or not.

Anonymous said...

damn you dumb morons.. in the u.s. you don't even have to do the crime and get a life sentence..examples.. conspiracy..life..attempted murder...life..know who committed the crime..life..and hell yes.. in the u.s it may be club med...but how can you asswhipes make a comparison.. when doing a life sentence for a crime that in mexico you'll most likely get 5 to 10 yrs....as for all you asswhipes that think you're saints.... how many people did you murder.. while being in the service..after you answer that one..... tell me of criminals..shit heads, Oh I forgot.. they were sanctioned by the u.s... so that makes it alright..murder is murder and a crime is crime regardless how you put it..

Anonymous said...

You say conspiracy holds a life sentence but you don't specify. Ex: Conspiracy to commit murde, yes it is possible. How bout someone tried to kill your dumb ass, what do you think they deserve 2 weeks probation?

Anonymous said...

"Know who committed the crime.. life" that's kindda like conspiracy don't you think ass wipe? I don't think judges are giving out life sentences to you if you know your buddy stold a battery from autozone, you think.

Anonymous said...

You ask how many people have our service members "murdered" yet I would bet you would be the first dumb motherfucker to give props to mexican military that kill some cartel members right? Because you're an American hater and like most American harers you itch for a reason to point your dirty ass finger at us!!

Anonymous said...

I hate all you racist ass fools.

Anonymous said...

I just caught this docu again, I wonder how it turned out for Julio. And that Peru prison is fuuuucked up. I don't feel sorry for rapist,child molesters and cold blooded killers, but I do feel for the minor criminals who are in these situations because of stealing to eat n feed their families. And I feel bad for people like Julio who are in there for defending themselves by taking someone else's life.

richardfg7 said...

Anybody who even goes to a third world country is nuts. And to go there messing with dope is just stupid,stupid,stupid.

Anonymous said...

Where was Carlos, Peru or Santa Martha?

Anonymous said...

Lmao are you guys american haters?? Haha I was a marine ..been in irak came back ...been in mexican border drug cartel infested towns came back haha can you guys please cut the racist remarks and gt a damnn jobb

Anonymous said...

If you can not do the time, please do not do the crime!! I been in prisons and no much different in U.S. state prisons or some county jails than what is said of the Mexico side. Been to Mexico and never got stopped or held because I know the law says "NO WEAPONS ALLOWED" . Not to hard to read or know that as it is also not allowed to go across state lines in U.S. without legal permits to do just that. Now with all this said, why should being American matter if criminal acts are done? Criminal is still criminal! Where is not the problem unless the reach of family money can not help him out of U.S. where it would move politics to favor him. People get locked up, beaten, and mistreated everyday all around the world. Some are innocent and some guilty. This man was caught with not one, not two, but three guns and screams AMERICAN! SORRY BUDDY, learn Spanish and eat, sleep and live your reward for your actions. Fair charge this time people.

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