Blog dedicated to reporting on Mexican drug cartels
on the border line between the US and Mexico

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Mexican President Critical of Low Conviction Rate

By E. Eduardo Castillo
Associated Press Writer
President Felipe Calderon questioned prosecutors and judges Wednesday as to why so few people are caught and punished for violent crimes in Mexico.

Calderon is conducting a series of public conferences on anti-crime strategies, amid increasing criticism of his offensive against drug gangs in which more than 28,000 people have died in drug-related violence since late 2006.

"There are a large number of people who are detained in police actions, caught in the act or in the company of other criminal suspects, and not withstanding that, the number of people who are finally brought to trial or convicted is significantly less," Calderon said at a meeting of officials from Mexico's judicial branch.

Calderon did not offer any specific figures on the conviction rate, but figures obtained by The Associated Press indicate that only about 15 percent of drug suspects detained between December 2006 and September 2009 have been convicted or acquitted.

The chief justice of Mexico's Supreme Court, Guillermo Ortiz, said Wednesday that while some charges are dismissed for lack of evidence, 85 percent of people formally held over for trial on crimes in general are convicted.

But officials also acknowledged that a highly touted legal reform allowing the government to seize alleged drug traffickers' property before they are convicted has been of little use since it was enacted in May 2009.

Ortiz said less than 10 cases had been brought under the property seizure law, saying it had "been of little use."

Attorney General Arturo Chavez said the law has been hampered because it requires prosecutors to reveal evidence from criminal cases to prove they have grounds for the seizures.

Criminal cases are usually kept sealed in Mexico.

Mexico has been under increasing pressure to combat an estimated flow of as much as $10 billion a year in suspicious funds possibly linked to drug trafficking.

Elsewhere on Wednesday, police in the northern state of Chihuahua reported finding four dead men tied to a fence in the crucifix position and five others shot to dead inside a ranch home.

The Chihuahua state prosecutors office said the men were tied to the fence with ropes, and a sign found nearby read: "Keep sending us kidnappers, and we will kill them."

The bodies were found on the side of a highway near the city of Cuauhtemoc.

Police also found the bodies of five people inside a ranch in the town of Villahumada. All had been shot to death, Chihuahua state prosecutors' spokesman Arturo Sandoval said.

In the northern state of Durango, state prosecutors reported Wednesday they had found the hacked-up bodies of three people stuffed into sacks in the city of Santiago Papasquiaro.

The sacks were dumped on a street. The victims had been dead for around a day by the time their bodies were found.


  1. ...Elsewhere Wednesday?
    ...Elsewhere Wednesday?

    Finally... a story about The Executive picking a fight with the Judicial Branch in public and we get detoured to an "everyday" bloody story?


    How did they react? Who are the players? What lobbies are influential? Reform of the judicial branch has to be someone's hobby pony...Who is that? Did you get any quotes? Did you remember to wash behind your ears? Do you need help wiping?

    Le mentaron la madre?

    Did anyone in a robe say that they say that they would immediately demand the state and federal legislatures to enact new rules of evidence?

    Did anyone in the legal community demand the that legislatures IMPOSE a synergistic relationship between the police and the prosecutors?

    Por lo menos hicieron un llamado para que los policias no se madrearan a los acusados? ...especialmente antes que salgan ante las camaras?

    Did they call the President any names?

    Did anything useful come out of it? Did anyone demand Justice?

    Is it me, or are these questions media relevant?


  2. Quieto prieto, saco lo del dialogo para mañana

  3. he, he....

    ...if your work makes anyone ask the relevant questions, then you're doing a hell of a job...

    Todos ustedes son mis heroes; yo nomas soy lengua larga.

    gracias compa...

    Por el Campestre en

  4. What makes Calderon or anybody think that judges and prosecutors are not paid off, just like police,journalist, politicians, customs,etc.Mexico needs and is getting a attempted housecleaning.

  5. The whole key to breaking the dope industry is the siezure of property and money strictley account for it then use the money to turn the tables on the cartels. Create a real judiciary, real law enforcment,real prisons,real death penalty,allow private ownership of guns,force politicians to reveal assets, CREATE NEPATISM LAWS---

  6. Seizure of property, monies, and also hitting those who launder narco money and doing the same.(of course this includes banks, notary publics, businesses, auto agencies, you name it..Not to mention the fact that it would have to be an international project as Mexican cartel money doesn't just get laundered in Mexico)

    Drug trafficking is a business, businesses run on economics...The source and the power is the money.

    "Un capo sin dinero es nada. Un capo sin
    dinero no puede corromper ni comprar
    seguridad…Un capo sin dinero,es hombre
    muerto”. - Antonio Luigi Mazzitelli "

    A drug lord without money is nothing. A drug lord without money can not corrupt nor buy security. A drug lord without money, is a dead man.-Antonio Luigi Mazzitelli

  7. We don't more laws: just enforcing what we have. I am sure the Nafta Agreement provided for a suitable framework for both the US and Mexico to collaborate and, jointly put the hurt on the bad guys financially. Seize their properties and goods, to them and EVERYONE linked to them unable to properly explain the origin of their wealth. The list (and value) of the properties and businesses is larger on the United States side. Restaurants, gyms, forwarding agencies, trucking companies, socialite publications of "free distribution". They all need to be hit hard and the proceeds spent on social entitlement programs.

  8. How phony can this get? Calderon and everyone in that meeting know the answers to all of thse questions. We know the answers. The Mexican people know the answers.What other words besides phony describe the drug war in Mexico.Corrupt government, Army and Police. Tragic. Ridiculous.Stupid.Never ending.Un- winnable. And so it goes. On the way to a failed state.

  9. Mexico needs to triple its jail capacity; and that's just for starters.

  10. @ 11:08...

    Do find it useful to say nothing? To do nothing? To leave nothing behind when you're gone? Sabes que es ser un "zero a la izquierda."

    Why brush your teeth if were just gonna have breakfast in an hour and a half? Why take a shower if we'll just get sweaty and stink up again. Why bother with wiping our butts is we're just gonna need to poop again in a few hours?

    Maybe I'm a narcissist, but, do you realize that you are now a part of The Media? Do you understand that the language you leave here is meant to influence those that read it?

    ...and...since you've now called attention to yourself...What positive influence do you want to have on me?

    You know...I think Calderon's point is exactly your point; he knows the state of our beloved country, but he has not stopped there. The nation needs many things, but most of all it needs positive leadership. Leadership is what he peddles. He doesn't build widgets he doesn't harvest crops. His stock in trade as an executive is influence; just like you when you grace the BorderlandBeat with your musings. His goal is to influence his country to keep its chin up, to not give up, to wake up and want to do a good job, to get up and daily do our part to keep moving forward towards creating a better society; centimetro tras centimetro.

    How are you using your influence?

  11. President Calderon is fully aware of what is wrong with the Judicial branch of is government. It is corrupted to the core. The corruption is endemic and it will be next to impossible to excise the corruption in the Judiciary.

    H. Matamoros, Tamps.

  12. Hola Christian.

    Ese es mi punto. Si; Calderon lo sabe. Y todos nosotros los sabelotodo lo diagnosticamos muy facilmente. Y pues decimos...que no se haga pato el Presidente, ¿no?

    Lo mas dificil, y lo que le toca al presidente, es ingeniarsela para influenciarnos a ti y a mi; a nosotros nos toca hacer lo mismo con Baltazar para que no nomas anden todos alli haciendole como ala de mosca, nomas fastidiandole al Presidente sus propuestas en la legislatura.

    Necesitamos hechos. Solidaridad con el. Tienen que haber intereses en comun. La justicia no descrimina entre partidos politicos, a todos nos esta llevando la que nos trajo.

    Y si no, pues les cedemos a esta bola de perros nuestro pueblo y nos vamos a tomornos las chelas al Piedras, no?. No hay tercera opcion.

    Por la Treviño-Zapata en
    Heroica Matamoros.


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