Benjamin Arellano Felix, head of Mexico's Tijuana
cartel: In a U.S. court
Monday, Felix was sentenced to 25 years in
prison and fined $100 million,
after pleading guilty to racketeering and money-laundering.
he begins his U.S. sentence, he is being returned to Mexico to
22-year sentence in that country.
Before ‘Aiding’ Mexico, U.S. Must Deal with its Own Corruption (El Universal, Mexico)
“Mexico has made the U.S. aware of its mistakes in regard to high drug consumption
and the indiscriminate sale of assault weapons on its territory. … But what has
not been achieved is participation from our northern neighbors
commensurate with the responsibility that they have now accepted. Organized
crime is transnational, and will only be eliminated if attacked with equal
force in all countries in which it resides.”
Mexican federal police present the newly-arrested 'El Zopilote' [the 'Buzzard'], a member of the Jalisco New Generation Cartel, at the Attorney General's Office in Guadalajara, Mar. 19. Most people in the United States have yet to acknowledge that the Mexican drug war, along with all of the corruption, money laundering and murder that it brings, is to some extent being waged in the U.S.
The presidents of Mexico and the United States and the prime
minister of Canada met yesterday at the White House to discuss the shared
issues of economy and security. The encounter served to reiterate that the
issue of violence in Mexico also rests with its neighbors, not just because of
their shared responsibility, but because the consequences are inevitably
President Calderón said: “If we
don't have mechanisms to forbid the sale of weapons [such as we had in the
‘90s, or for registry of guns, at least for assault weapons], then we are never
going to be able to stop the violence in Mexico or stop a future turning of
those guns on American society itself."
In fact, the violence has already reached several U.S.
border cities, where mayors and local departments of justice have had to request
federal aid to get a handle on threats and assassinations. There have also been
reports of all kinds of official corruption, from U.S. Border Patrol agents to federal
officials. Just last week, three soldiers from our neighboring country were
arrested after the DEA discovered that they were acting as paid assassins for a
Although the most striking effects occur in Mexico, hard
data confirms that the rest of the region also suffers. Drug trafficking alone,
just one of the businesses of organized crime, leaves 45,000 people dead in the
three countries of the North American bloc every year, the highest rate in the
world according to the 2011 report of the U.N.’s International
Narcotics Control Board.
In recent years, Mexico has made the United States aware of
its mistakes in regard to high drug consumption and the indiscriminate sale of
assault weapons on its territory, both of which feed the growth of criminal
organizations south of the Rio Grande.
But what has not been achieved is participation from our northern
neighbors commensurate with the responsibility that they have now
accepted. Before giving "aid" to Mexico, they would do well to reduce
corruption within their own borders.
Organized crime today is transnational, and will only be
eliminated if attacked with equal force in all countries in which it resides.
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