Homicides are on the rise in Mexico after years of decline, and it's the result of a new criminal dynamic

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Homicides are on the rise in Mexico after years of decline, and it's the result of a new criminal dynamic

Mica
Homicides are on the rise in Mexico after years of decline, and it's the result of a new criminal dynamic Business Insider
After several years of declines, Mexico's homicide rate has started to rise, with the total body count for the first half of 2016 the highest since 2012.

The total number of homicides in the first half of this year — 10,301, or about 57 a day — is about 15% more than the 8,979 in the same period in 2015, though it is fewer homicides than in the first halves of 2011 and 2012, when the drug war's violence was considered to be at its peak.

The high rates of killings recorded in those two years are thought to be related to the bloody fight over Ciudad Juarez, contested by "El Chapo" Guzmán's Sinaloa cartel and the Juarez cartel, which resulted in about eight homicides a day on average.

The fight for Juarez started around 2008 and ended during 2011-2012, tapering off before current President Enrique Peña Nieto took office in late 2012.

The slowdown in killing in Juarez is thought to be the reason for the decline in homicides during the first years of the Peña Nieto administration. The rise in homicides in recent years — a 19% jump in 2015 to 18,650, the most since 2012, and a roughly 15% jump in the first half of this year — seems to give lie to the Peña Nieto government's claims that it has halted the bloodshed.



'Really nasty fights'
The rise in homicides seems likely related to another criminal dynamic in Mexico: The fragmentation of the major criminal organizations that once operated in the country.

Mexican security analyst Alejandro Hope told Vice News that the bloodshed was tied to "really nasty fights" between larger cartels and "increasing violence" among smaller gangs and criminal organizations.

The breakdown of larger cartels has been driven by infighting, outside competition, and pressure from law enforcement.

"Their demise, however, has created a vacuum that has been occupied by a large array of smaller, more local, more predatory gangs," Hope wrote earlier this year.

The role smaller criminal groups have played in the killings is most evident in southern Mexico, particularly in Guerrero state, where the fragmentation of, and rivalries, between larger cartels are occurring alongside the emergence of smaller, regional groups competing for influence.

In that state, the Sinaloa cartel and the Jalisco New Generation cartel (CJNG), generally considered the country's two most powerful cartels, are competing for influence, while the fragmentation of the once powerful Beltran Leyva Organization along with the presence of other groups like Los Rojos, Los Ardillos, and Guerreros Unidos — and the shifting alliances between all those groups — has added an element of confusion to the mayhem.

These groups are mostly fighting over stakes in the heroin trade, for which Guerrero is an epicenter.
"The single most important source of [drug-trafficking organization] earnings are profits from the sale of heroin derived from poppy that is grown in the mountains" in Guerrero, which produces about 60% of Mexico's crop of the drug, University of Alabama at Birmingham professor Chris Kyle wrote in early 2015.

Guerrero's 163 organized-crime-related homicides in May were almost twice as many as recorded that month in other states with high homicide rates, and the state's homicide rate jumped 39% to 2,402, or 67 per 100,000 people, the second-most killings in the country last year.

In the long-term, these smaller criminal organizations won't be able to wield power like the larger, transnational cartels of the past, but in the near term, they will continue to be responsible for bloodshed and deep disorder in Mexico.

A wave of violence
While Guerrero has proven to be the most glaring example of the spike in deadly violence in Mexico, much of the country has seen an increase in organized-crime-related killing over the last year and a half.



Like Guerrero, Mexico state — which reported the most homicides last year, 2,671, about 17 per 100,000 people — is also experiencing fighting between smaller criminal groups.

In northern Mexico, organized-crime-related violence is also rising.

In Tamaulipas, fighting among various factions of the Zetas cartel, along with the Zetas' clashes with the Gulf cartel, has resulted in a number of killings, and the continued fighting and realignment of those groups augurs more bloodshed in the future.

In the northern states of Chihuahua and Sinaloa, with homicides rates of 42 and 36 per 100,000, respectively, recent violence is likely related to some criminal groups "smelling weakness in Sinaloa" after the rearrest of  Sinaloa kingpin "El Chapo" Guzmán earlier this year, Hope told Vice News.

In June, it was reported that a faction of the Beltran Leyva Organization launched an attack on Guzmán's hometown in Sinaloa, killing several and forcing hundreds to flee, including Guzmán's mother.

That attack was reportedly backed by Rafael Caro Quintero, a former ally of Guzmán who is himself on the run from authorities after he was released 28 years into a 40-year sentence for killing a DEA agent. Caro Quintero has denied he is at all involved in the drug trade.

Chihuahua reported the third-most homicides in the country last year, with 1,541, while Sinaloa recorded the fifth-most, 1,089.

n Baja California, the Sinaloa cartel is believed to be fighting the CJNG for control of trafficking territory in Tijuana, while in Baja California Sur, Sinaloa cartel infighting is thought to have been exacerbated by the recent arrival of the CJNG.

Farther south, in Colima, Mexico's smallest state, criminal groups — including Sinaloa and CJNG — are suspected of launching a new round of violence, competing for lucrative smuggling routes centered around Manzanillo, one of Mexico's major Pacific ports. The state saw a 338% increase in homicides in the first half of this year, compared to the same period last year.

In Michoacan, formerly a battleground between the Knights Templar cartel and various civilian-organized self-defense groups, there were 480 homicides in the first five months of this year, a 37% increase over the same period last year, according to Hope.

In Zacatecas, in north-central Mexico, homicides have risen 93% this year. In Nuevo Leon, just west of Tamaulipas, killings are up 45%.

Veracruz, site of recent killings of journalists as well as fighting between CJNG and Zetas cartel factions, has seen a 77% spike in homicides (which has occurred amid continued allegations about government corruption).

The southern state of Oaxaca has seen two multiple killings in just a few days this month, including eight members of a family of fishermen. On July 26, La Silla Rota reported that the state had seen 20 homicides in two weeks.

Oaxaca, on Mexico's Pacific coast, is believed to be a transit point for drug traffickers.

Some Mexican states haven't seen significant spikes in their homicide rates. Based on national statistical board data, Aguascalientes and Yucatan both had rates of 3 per 100,000 in 2015, while Querétaro y Campeche had 7 per 100,000. The US, for comparison, had a homicide rate of 4 per 100,000 in 2013, down from 8 in 1995.

Figures released by the Executive Secretariat of the National Public Safety System (SESNSP), which gathers data from law-enforcement sources, showed 2015 had 18,650 homicides in Mexico, the most since 2012 and the first increase since that year.

Another set of data from the national statistical board (INEGI), which bases its reports on death certificates, showed that 2015 had 20,525 homicides, a 2.5% increase from the year before. The INEGI's figures indicate that the national homicide rate last year was 16.9 per 100,000 people, a slight increase from 16.7 in 2014.

June this year, with 1,828 homicides, was the second-most deadly month since the SESNSP started recording monthly totals in January 2014.
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Re: Homicides are on the rise in Mexico after years of decline, and it's the result of a new criminal dynamic

deelucky1
What is this televisa report?
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Re: Homicides are on the rise in Mexico after years of decline, and it's the result of a new criminal dynamic

Mica
Where do you see the word, "televisa"?
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Re: Homicides are on the rise in Mexico after years of decline, and it's the result of a new criminal dynamic

elgordo
Quick question for a long time now I've seen here on BB with a lot of people saying CDS has been out of Juarez n tookn out by La Linea so how is it that a
Cartels are moving in on taking Juarez from them. I think government has a lot to do with these news of Caro and BLO and everything else but who knows just a question n a little thought I have
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Re: Homicides are on the rise in Mexico after years of decline, and it's the result of a new criminal dynamic

deelucky1
In reply to this post by deelucky1
I just don't see the graph for people being killed from corrupted government officials. how can you possibly have an acurate report if you leave them out of the picture .people get killed because these officials get so greedy and take bribes from the same people that are mentioned here.this is what you call a big pot of finger atole for the  people .taste so good your finger stays in your mouth forever.
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Re: Homicides are on the rise in Mexico after years of decline, and it's the result of a new criminal dynamic

deelucky1
The decline in homicide can also be do to fact the peña  nieto administration buying there votes with gift cards and TV 's for each vote . killing people at that time would be ridiculous they where in the season of giving .televisa was  all up peña nieto's jockstrap giving inacurate votes to make it seem nieto was winning ..I can just imagine the amount of their nice gift cards!
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Re: Homicides are on the rise in Mexico after years of decline, and it's the result of a new criminal dynamic

jlopez
In reply to this post by Mica
These numbers may be understated. As sources such as Zeta have pointed out in past reports, government statistics count as intentional homicides only those cases in which criminal investigations are initiated by the local ministerio publico, the equivalent of a District Attorney in the U.S., or other appropriate government authority.

This classification has different consequences. The most obvious is the erroneous classification of a homicide as not intentional, which would require an investigation. The reason may be political or simple incompetence, but it happens routinely in Mexico.  Cases that would be classified as murder in the U.S., for example, may not be "doloso" enough for a Mexican investigator.

But there is also a problem when the government is reluctant to even admit there was a homicide. So, for example, there have been many instances in which local residents' statements about the number of victims in a shootout differ substantially from the figures reported by the government involving those same incidents. The recent confrontation in La Tuna is a good example of that, with the government reporting between 3 to 5 deaths, but the locals asserting that there were at least 11, and stating that there have been numerous subsequent deaths.

Another dark number, to use the term used by the Mexican press ("cifra negra") is made up of victims who are "disappeared" by government or non-government criminals. Allende exemplifies this situation, but the large number of remains found in unmarked graves all over Mexico is further evidence that such murders are under-reported. The families or associates of disappeared persons or victims found in unmarked graves more than likely suspect that their loved ones are dead. But until the government identifies the remains and conducts a criminal investigation, the victim will not be included in the murder statistics.

Bottom line, the government has many reasons for under-reporting murder statistics, so these official reports have to be evaluated with some degree of skepticism.  

 
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Re: Homicides are on the rise in Mexico after years of decline, and it's the result of a new criminal dynamic

deelucky1
The penetration of cartels  in state ,local and federal forces  of the country. is a serious risk to national sucurity .these people honor protection to organized crime to let them do their dirty business.and that includes murder
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Re: Homicides are on the rise in Mexico after years of decline, and it's the result of a new criminal dynamic

juris
 This is Mexico. Of course the numbers are bogus. You need an unbiased, outside NGO to get anything even approaching a true accounting.
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Re: Homicides are on the rise in Mexico after years of decline, and it's the result of a new criminal dynamic

deelucky1
This post was updated on .
In reply to this post by deelucky1
No you dont its naked to the eye!some people forget to take off their beer goggles!
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Re: Homicides are on the rise in Mexico after years of decline, and it's the result of a new criminal dynamic

Bajadrone-2
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Re: Homicides are on the rise in Mexico after years of decline, and it's the result of a new criminal dynamic

deelucky1
No panhandling please !you see how the guzmanes kids are cause they gave them everything !you will thank me later
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Re: Homicides are on the rise in Mexico after years of decline, and it's the result of a new criminal dynamic

deelucky1
I honestly think this is one the best interesting post in a while .
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Re: Homicides are on the rise in Mexico after years of decline, and it's the result of a new criminal dynamic

Bajadrone-2
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Re: Homicides are on the rise in Mexico after years of decline, and it's the result of a new criminal dynamic

Mica
I can tell you that the real number is unknown.  Think about how often we hear about mass graves.  If the total sum number calculated people missing for over 6 or 12 months it would probably increase big time!
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Re: Homicides are on the rise in Mexico after years of decline, and it's the result of a new criminal dynamic

deelucky1
In reply to this post by Bajadrone-2
If i cant encourage you to read its ok !its what i see and the way i see it .never heard of right or wrong reading dosnt exist.what do you see? i never said i was right and i could care less if someone agrees Or disagrees.this is somthing someone posted and obviously not what he wrote !so what people are you talking about ?who needs to know ?maybe you see this as your gossip hour !
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Re: Homicides are on the rise in Mexico after years of decline, and it's the result of a new criminal dynamic

Bjeff
In reply to this post by Mica
I would say the interesting thing about these recent stats is that murders are increasing and the agency behind the statistics AKA the Mexican government is not trying to hide that fact.
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Re: Homicides are on the rise in Mexico after years of decline, and it's the result of a new criminal dynamic

J. Stewart
This post was updated on .
Yes, it's interesting. But at some point even the Mex. Gov. can't turn the blind eye, but how much is still undeclared and hidden, that's the million dollar question.
Since media is selfcensored there is an impossible mission to answer I think. There is no one that can opposite the governmental numbers. All we really know, or have a feeling of, is that violence and murders is going up steep since the last six months or so.

It would be great if Deelucky can/want to share his point of veiw in the region he knows of. As I understand the threads in this good forum there are something going on in Sonora/Baja Calif. +Sur/Sinaloa/Nayarit/Durango but we only get fragments in separate incidents, not the bigger picture. So if there is a bigger picture please speculate about it and the possible outcome in near future.
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Re: Homicides are on the rise in Mexico after years of decline, and it's the result of a new criminal dynamic

Bajadrone-2
This post was updated on .
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Re: Homicides are on the rise in Mexico after years of decline, and it's the result of a new criminal dynamic

jlopez
In reply to this post by Bajadrone-2
Baja: Tijuana's Zeta magazine reviewed all local news reports around the country and counted the number of homicides reported by news media. The result differed significantly-- by several percentage points -- from the government reports. I don't recall whether they made any allowance for remains found in unmarked graves. Most news services also routinely report on the thousands of disappeared persons every year and usually state that they believe that, for several reasons, the number of reported cases is vastly understated.  You can Google the Zeta report, but I bet they will come out with another report soon, if only to make EPN look like a liar.
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