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

Sunday, December 30, 2012

Over 25,000 names on secret list of "disappeared"

El Diario/Proceso 


Anabel Hernandez

Translated by un vato for Borderland Beat

During the six-year Calderon administration, and as a result of his war against drug trafficking, 25,276 persons acquired the classification of "desaparecidos" (disappeared). They are 25,276 human beings who officially are neither alive nor dead. They simply are not there. They are only statistics, but behind each of them there is a woman, a man, or a child with names, last names and families, and of whom so far nothing is known. This weekly journal gained access to the "Integrated Database of Persons not Found" (Base Integrada de Personas no Localizadas) and  the report from all the attorneys general in the country, which was presented last July 17 (2012). From an analysis of both documents comes the first official count of the "disappeared" in Mexico, a phenomenon that is part of the inheritance that, like it or not, the government of Enrique Pena Nieto received and must confront.

Distrito Federal (Proceso).-- Disappeared Person No. 2,586: Martha Teresa Chacon Corral. Housewife born in Durango, Durango; 1.70 meters (5'7") tall, medium build, medium dark skin, wavy brown hair, has some facial discoloration.  On February 14, 2011, after 5:00 p.m.,she was with her son, Jose Angel Martinez Chacon, in her home, when two men entered all the way into the ironing room, where Martha Teresa was, and took her. She was wearing blue jeans, cap, grey T-shirt with blue sleeves, pink felt boots and a pink sweatshirt. Since then, her whereabouts are not known.

Disappeared Person No. 15,822: Newborn male whose parents did not have time to register. March 33, 2007, in Ciudad Madero, Tamaulipas, disappeared. The report was filed that same day.

Case No. 22,889: Juan Antonio Mota Macias, 28 years old. Commander of a Zacatecas corrections facility (Centro de Readaptacion Social). On March 11, 2010, at 1:30 in the afternoon he was in his home in the town of Trancoso, Zacatecas, with his wife and son, when a group of armed men came into his house and took him. He was wearing underwear only and was barefoot. At this time, his whereabouts are unknown.

Brothers Gerardo and Eduardo Bahena Cabrera are numbers 2,728 and 2,739 on the list. The first was 29 years old and the second, 26. Members of the Armed Navy (Marines), they disappeared on January 1, 2010, in Matamoros, Tamaulipas, and nothing is known about them since.

Numbers in the shadow

All are part of the list of persons who disappeared in Mexico during Felipe Calderon's war against drug trafficking, and they are in a report drafted by the Attorney General's Office (PGR) and the justice departments of all the states and the Distrito Federal. They are simply some of the thousands of women, men, children and babies that during six years appear to have vanished on a highway, a military road block, in their homes, on the way to grocery store or simply out walking.

While the government of Enrique Pena Nieto and local authorities have remained silent regarding the list of persons who disappeared in Mexico from December, 2006, to July, 2012, Proceso obtained access to the  "Integrated Database of Persons not Found" and to the most recent report created by the PGR and the attorneys general of 32 states and the Federal District (Distrito Federal) that was presented July 17 (2012) at the Interior Ministry  (Secretaria de Gobernacion).

The database and the report jointly reflect the horror of the "desaparecidos" in Mexico. The integrated database, updated to February, 2012, contains 20,851 cases, but the report presented on July 17 states that the number of disappeared persons reached 25,276. On Tuesday, December 18, Proceso had access to the documents and analyzed the statistics and facts. This is the first information about the Calderon's government human disaster.

According to the investigation and the official documents that  were accessed, the "Integrated Database of Persons not Found" and the attorneys general report presented on July 17, 2012, at the Interior Ministry was prepared and organized by personnel at the PGR's Planning , Analysis and Information Center against Crime (Cenapi; Centro de Planeacion, Analisis e Informacion para el Combate a la Delincuencia). Cenapi gathered and organized the information provided by the state attorneys general.

Each disappeared person was assigned a number, the date, state, township or police station and town where the disappearance took place were noted, and the date of each particular report. The name of the disappeared person was noted, along with the age, gender, occupation, nationality and aliases, if this was known. The report also details whether there are photographs of the person.

Also, there was a section where their physical and health characteristics were described, as well as the registration of any vehicle the person may have been traveling on and a brief description of the incident. Finally, it was thought advisable to also include data about the relative who reported the disappearance.

On reviewing the data, one can see that not all the states include the same degree of detail in the information about the victims. Some states provided very vague information.
The numbers in the database only reflect those disappeared persons for whom there was a report made or police complaint filed. Disappearances not reported (to the authorities) are not included, as in the case, for example, of undocumented immigrants that cross Mexican territory on their way to the United States.

Through the National Commission for Human Rights (Comision Nacional de los Derechos Humanos) it is known that there are hundreds or thousands more cases.

In addition to the reports provided by local authorities, Cenapi added information from the Center for Investigation and National Security (CISEN; Centro de Investigacion y Seguridad Nacional), according to the documents that were reviewed for this article.

The integrated database contains just one case from 2005, which was not reported until 2006, without specifying the date; there's also a report from August, 2006), but the rest involves persons who disappeared between December 1, 2006, and February, 2012. The figure of 20,851 (disappeared) persons was obtained from this document.

According to official documents that Proceso has, on May 24 and 25, during the XXVII Ordinary Session of the Plenary Meeting of the National Conference on Procurement of Justice (XXVII Sesion Ordinaria de la Asamblea Plenaria de la Conferencia Nacional de Procuracion de Justicia) in Monterrey, the PGR and the state prosecutors agreed to complement and finalize the reports in the database no later than June 5, 2012, and to develop a permanent method for amplifying, updating and validating the information.

In that session, it was also agreed that, in order to comply with the requirements in the decree by which the Law for the National Registry of Facts on Lost or Disappeared Persons (Ley del Registro Nacional de Datos de Personas Extraviadas o Desaparecidas) was promulgated, information referring to the "general facts about persons not located" should be forwarded to the National System of Public Security.

According to the document, of which Proceso has a copy, "towards that end, on June 13, the PGR/Cenapi and the National Information Center of the National System of Public Security began to work on a project proposal, taking into consideration the structure of the database required and the legal document upon which to base the corresponding exchange of information, in order to comply with the referenced law."

As far as can be determined, the intent was to make the numbers public. But it didn't happen that way.

The numbers increased noticeably in the reports provided by the state attorneys general and Cenapi personnel began to clean up the list to determine how many of the disappeared persons had already been found, dead or alive, so they could have a figure that was closer to reality. 

The numbers were overwhelming. No government was safe, except the Nayarit government, which reported zero disappearances. All of them, including the federal government, maintained silence on the numbers.

On July 17, 2012, in the third national meeting of the Executive Secretaries of the state public security systems or councils at the Interior Ministry, a report was presented on the progress on the Collaboration Agreement for the Unification, Integration and Exchange of Information on the Matter of Persons not Found (Convenio de Colaboracion para la Unificacion, Integracion e Intercambio de Informacion en Materia de Personas no Localizadas).

The gross number of disappeared persons was 29,386, but it was cleaned up: 3,895 persons were found alive and 215 were found dead. The final number was 25,276. This report is not as detailed as the database, but is instead a summary, updated up to the day of the meeting, of the number of persons whose disappearance was confirmed.

Cenapi personnel had in their possession the database and the report was released by then-Attorney General Marisela Morales days before the Calderon administration ended. The former public servants have expressed fear that the information on disappeared persons was erased from the PGR archives, but they point out the National Public Security System and the state governments also have (the information), but have chosen to remain silent.

Presumably, this is the reason that they leaked part of the information to the Washington Post and another part to the Investigation and Training Center Civic Proposal (Centro de Investigacion y Capacitacion Propuesta Civica). The complete information was provided to this reporter on Tuesday, December 18.

2011 and the DF, the worst

From December, 2006, to July, 2012, the year with the greatest number of disappeared persons was 2011. According to the report from the state attorneys general, the number was 8,977; that was the year that had the most murders in the Calderon war against drug trafficking. In February of 2012, the PGR officially admitted to a figure of 12,903 deaths in executions or confrontations between organized crime groups.

From confrontations between criminal organizations,  48 persons a day were murdered and 24 (per day) disappeared, on average.

The year with the second highest number of  disappeared persons was 2010, with 7,246. It was also the second most violent year in the six year administration, with almost 11,500 murders by organized crime, according to tallies from several sources. The states in which there appeared to be less explicit  violence were the ones with the most disappearances.

According to the report presented on July 17, the entity with the most disappeared persons was the Federal District (Distrito Federal), with 9,268 cases, 36% of the 25,276 disappeared persons in the entire country.
(Anabel Hernandez/Proceso)


  1. That's some sad shit

  2. That shit ain't no phenomenon , it's just a bunch of sick fucks who are going to end up in the same mireda they are dishing out, I'm willing to bet that the majority on that list ain't exactly innocent either . Feel sorry for the real innocents tho, infants? C'mon son that ain't cool

  3. Thanks for this. There is a definite lack of articles about the disappeared. One of the messed up things is that the biggest group of the disappeared is not on a list. Thats why I think that the low ball number for the disappeared should start at seventy thousand and the true number probably well above that. There is obviously a concerted effort to suppress death and disappeared numbers. Its no wonder folk like the finger pointed at the cartels as there are plenty of greedy side liners taking advantage, too.

  4. chapo guzman dead..............

    1. Its was just a joke , the mexican december fools day :D

    2. that was the mexican april fools day..Dec 28!

    3. I got fooled also...I was going crazy trying to investigate if this was true or not

  5. I wonder how the numbers of killed, wounded and dissapeared in Mexico are in relation to - for example - war in Afghanistan, and war in Iraq.

  6. Alguien save algo sober ambrosio carrizales Morales "El nene "?? Era De nvo Laredo y pariente details Jose Luis Carrizales "El tubi "


  7. Mexico's failure to protect its people.
    This is just terrible, and we all know the numbers are worse. In many cases the government has victimized its own citizens.
    Many states in Mexico (Tams,Coa,Sin,Mich) citizens are living under a criminal dictatorship. The 'Drug War' label is a convenient way for Mexico and the US to put a positive spin on the tragedy.

  8. just 25,000? seems incredibly low.

  9. The 25k figure was from Calderon. He announced that over one year ago. It is the conservative tally of those most likely in fossa. when he first said the figure he defined it specifically in the frontera states. So these media projections are old and out dated. even when calderon said 25K that was clearly low. Credit should go to Calderon as being the first president to give such records. He made many mistakes but remember he was the first to tackle org crime he had no precedent, and the first narco president was some 70 years prior.

    I am sicken that Mexico treats any issue to do with economic migrants as a separate issue,and in this case hernandez says "25k human beings" so what are the 10k per year migrants that go missing?

    guess they do not count.

  10. I understand calderon tried to take out all the high ranking cartel bosses but he failed , n some of them were snitched on by Z40 ,they got lucky with el lazca sopposely someone called in from a different city, el coss had connects with the mexican navy so they turn their back on him before anyone found out bout it , there's more than the soppose 60.000 dead in the 6year war , they had that # since 2011 like wtf and now 25.000 missing, thats just not right , there's more than 100.000 dead n maybe 50.000 missing n nobody's doing nothing bout it , its just sad , the mexican army n navy are always talking about how they found someone with naval intellegence all they do is torture prisoners or innocent people to catch someone or make deals with cartel members , just thought everyone should know about this

  11. This is by anabel hernandez so you bet your ass I was gonna read it...

  12. hey BB could you put that story up on those town folk that went badass on the thiefs they caught in there town of Cuautlapan....heehee just love it when town folk get the upper hand on those robbing parasites...there aint much info out there maybe you guys can find more.

    Thanks BB keep up your great work!!!

  13. @ 5:49 AM. go back and re-read the story. Feliz dia de los inocentes

  14. Calderon had a list of his targeted Most Wanted leaders.
    It is a list of 25.

    He captured or killed 15 or 16, that is a success in the plan but a bad plan of action. Cartels are businesses that prepare for any scenario that would take out 1 or more leaders.

  15. This 'drug war' will continue to fail as long as Mexico does not stop all forms of corruption that its politicians and elites enjoy as well. The Mexican citizens have no one to trust at this point, therefore they will not cooperate.
    Maybe Calderon deserves credit for trying, but the execution failed. Besides what can one man and a week federal government do against throngs of corrupt politicians in other states.
    This was just as much a war between the PRI and the PAN as it was the Zetas vs. CDS.

  16. it's all on Calderon. What a piece of shit he is.

  17. There has to be people that know where some of those persons are but because of fear and distrust they do not report it. Perhaps if there was a direct anonymous tip call line to a trustworthy government (usa maybe) people would call in to make reports. Many of those on the list would be found. And who knows what else they would report.

  18. i wonder how many times the report omitted that the police or military was involved. Alot of the missing go missing after contact with the military or police.

  19. Is the "Integrated Database of Persons not Found" (Base Integrada de Personas no Localizadas) really secret?" or is this just a sensetionalized title. If so,. how did "this weekly journal" get access to it? Are there any consequences to obtaining secret information and then publishing it?

    Parents didn't have time to register a newborn? Wow, they must have been reaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaal busy. Was this even narco related or backwoods parents that didn't like the sex of the child? Wouldn't put it past them.

    Yeah, how 'bout them 10k migrants disappearing in Mexico????? Do they count, or is it only an issue when an Arizona police officer asks you some questions? Now, THAT's the real torture (segun los Mexicanos)

  20. When you mention "disappeared" and "Mexico" in the same article besides the usual blaming of Calderon y los Griiiingos, you need to mention Tenancingo, the sexual slave capital of Mexico.

    This is an open and disgusting "secret" in Mexico where many immigrants going though Mexico are mistreated by Mexicans as they disappear while being systematically forced into sexual slavery.

    Tenancigo is command central. Goggle TENANCIGO TRAFFIKING y veras.

  21. I never thought a family member of mine would end up on the "disappeared" list. Even though it's going to be two years that you have been tooken away from us, I still miss you like the very first day. We love and miss you grandpa, we still dont know why this happened to you and still have no closure. You will forever be in my prayers and live in each of our hearts.

  22. @ 10:40 am. Right on! Its surreal, watch, then come the articles about how the military are fighting the cartels. To the rescue, eh? The military disappears people, steal their houses, empty bank accounts at a terrific pace.

    The poorest of the poor do not get on a list when they disappear. Its odd to see whats left of the media offer numbers of the dead and missing. The numbers are kept low because the numbers are so high.


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