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First I want to say, that impunity is "no consequences for one's actions".
Secondly, we know that in Mexico, there are "no consequences for outright corruption nd criminal behavior".
Now the controversial part, thirdly, if impunity exists in the USA then there is no law and order. Don't get me wrong, but how many lives have been lost in the USA, because people resisted arrest, and the situation escalated? I believe that everyone is equal and really are the same under different skins. What I don't understand is impunity.
Impunity is looking the other way, discreetly rewarding crime, not casting blame. Most of all, no repercussions, or false accusations based on personal bias.
We've seen this in disappearances in Mexico, judicial cases, incorrect service of law, etc.
Is it race that resists arrest? Is it race the commits crimes? Let's be clear.
If impunity invades the USA system, then there is simply no law and order, witness Mexico.
One bad cop and his rookie cronies, do not represent 18,000 police stations, who deal on the edge of impunity and law/order.
Don't want to stir anything up, because we are all the same, but shouldn't behaviors change on both sides of the fence?
I'll expect this post to be deleted, but it's only my opinion not an election endorsement.
Lastly, our Mexican friend, who was killed by the police in Mexico for not wearing a mask? Justice is short served everywhere.
[IF A CARTEL OWNS A PLAZA, THEY OWN THE TRANSIT POLICE, MUNICIPAL POLICE, STATE POLICE AND THE FEDERAL POLICE. LASTLY THEY OWN THE STATE GOVERNORS AND THE HEADS OF STATE UP TO THE HIGHEST RANKS. THIS IS IN ORDER TO LOOK THE OTHER WAY AND HAVE FREE PASSAGE FOR DRUG AND HUMAN TRAFFICKING ROUTES. THESE BRIBES ARE EXPONENTIAL. TO TAKE A PLAZA, YOU DEFEAT THE REIGNING CARTEL, AND THEN YOU OWN ALL THE POLICIA AND FEDS, NO CHOICE BUT TO DEAL WITH YOU! SUCCESSFUL AND GREEDY CARTELS ARE THOSE THAT OWN THE MOST PLAZAS PAST THE BORDER TO THE USA]
MEXICO CITY – Justice is driven by a series of precise gears – if one fails, the system suffers. But often it is only the consequences of such breakdowns that come into public view. In Mexico, for example, 90% of crimes go unreported. For those that are called in, impunity is astronomically high: 96.1% in local cases and 94.6% in federal ones. In other words, of all the cases investigated by authorities, only 4%-6% reach an adequate conclusion.
Failures of the justice system are similarly palpable in levels of violence. In 2019, Mexico’s homicide rate was the highest in 20 years, averaging 94 murders per day. Despite this, and the implications for public life, not enough attention is paid to the causes – the grinding of those little gears – that have brought the system to the edge of collapse.
Recent violence in the state of Guanajuato offers an illustrative view of the shortcomings in Mexico’s justice system – and some of what can be done to address them.
First, the pervasiveness of cartel violence in the state suggests a clear absence of public policy at all levels designed to prevent crime in the first place. Under previous administrations, as well as under President Andrés Manuel López Obrador, security strategies have focused first and foremost on the use of public force. It has not worked. In Guanajuato, 706 members of the Santa Rosa de Lima Cartel and 662 of the Cartel Jalisco Nueva Generación have been arrested in the last 18 months even as the homicide rate has spiked to record highs.
But just as significant is a lack of planning, coordination and prioritization among local and federal authorities tasked with dealing with crime in general, and organized crime in particular.
The arrest among other alleged cartel members on June 20 of the mother of “El Marro,” the leader of the Santa Rosa cartel, is a case in point. This was a direct action against an organized crime group, but was nonetheless coordinated not by the federal attorney general’s office (FGR) but by state authorities. Having not been involved in the arrest, the FGR was limited to a public pronouncement on inconsistencies and procedural errors in the operation, saying it would open an investigation into the state attorney general’s office. “El Marro’s” mother was released a week later, her detention declared invalid. It was a prime example – but far from an isolated one – of the consequences of failed coordination between state and federal authorities.
In such cases, media and public attention tends to focus on the judges who allow alleged criminals to go free. But much of this dysfunction is baked deeper into the cake of Mexico’s justice system. Management models and criminal policy are inadequate at both the state and federal level, and lead to numerous disconnects between authorities in the cases they pursue, how they use limited resources, and their strategies for dealing with organized crime.
In Guanajuato, for example, the state’s attorney general has made the strategic decision to pursue all homicides as individual cases – despite the fact that many if not most are clearly part of a broader network of criminal activity (evident enough in the types of weapons used and the nature of the crimes committed). This prevents authorities from analyzing criminality on a macro scale, and limits local and federal agencies in efforts to prosecute organized crime writ large.
Indeed, in many instances a highly inefficient modus operandi persists at the local level, in which authorities investigating a homicide often only concern themselves with prosecuting triggermen, who can be replaced by organized crime groups almost immediately.
A shift in focus is needed. Dismantling organized crime requires coordinated action between federal and local authorities. Without it, cartels will prevail because they have both the economic means and the manpower to keep their basic operating structures in place.
Again, Guanajuato shows the urgency of reform. Last year, 814 state investigations were sent to the FGR. In 2020 so far, the number is 398. But despite the huge caseload, there is no existing strategy governing joint investigations of high-impact crimes, nor one for coordination throughout the justice process.
A clearer line of competency – who is responsible for what – in pursuing organized crime is sorely needed, alongside greater collaboration and coordination among municipal, state and federal authorities. For that to happen, the FGR needs to take ownership of investigations that fall within its purview, such as those related to organized crime. Too often, federal prosecutors take their autonomy as justification for absenting themselves from their obligation to coordinate criminal investigations with and among state authorities.
Immediate reforms could focus on building a more functional judicial framework that establishes clear rules over how high-impact crimes will be pursued at all levels of government. This was partly the intent of the Federal Organized Crime Law originally passed in 1996. But that law, meant to provide exceptions to normal criminal procedure, has since permeated the entire judicial system, as anti-crime strategies have focused increasingly on punitive policies. When the exception became the rule, the law ceased to be a functional way to deal with high-impact crimes. Nor does the law establish specific guidelines and methods to prioritize attention on such crimes, leaving prosecutors without the resources they need to succeed.
But while the gears of justice in Mexico need to be adjusted, they should not be replaced. López Obrador has spoken of the need to overhaul the system, but in truth existing mechanisms have never been given a chance to function fully. Allowing them to do so would start with criminal policy that takes a comprehensive view of security and justice priorities. Policies and management models need to be put in place that will encourage collaboration between the FGR and state attorney’s offices. Criminal investigations need to be technical and specialized, rather than being the sole remit of prosecutors’ offices who, as it stands, substantiate their own investigations in court (compromising their validity and creating an opening for corruption).
Finally, Mexico needs a new normative framework specific to organized crime that clarifies the competencies of distinct local and federal agencies. Without such basic reforms, new anti-crime strategies will be built over existing defects – and the gears of justice will continue to grind fruitlessly away.
[I POST THIS ARTICLE, BECAUSE IT IS IDEALISTIC AND NAIVE. WHY COORDINATE ACTIVITIES WITH FEDERALES WHO ARE COMPLICIT WITH THE CARTEL. THIS ONLY TIPS THEM OFF, AND A WARNING GIVEN. MY TAKE IS, START AT THE TOP AND WORK YOUR WAY DOWN, NOT THE OTHER WAY AROUND, IF YOU WANT TO BUILD TRUST AND HAVE A REAL STRUCTURE. WE SEE THIS IN THE USA, IF THEIR IS IMPUNITY, YOU HAVE NO LAW AND ORDER, BUT ONLY ANARCHY]
In reply to this post by Parro
I wonder what it costs in terms of all the bribes to own a plaza?
[BLANCO PURO, ASKED ME ABOUT THE COST OF A PLAZA. IT WAS UNDER THE HEADING OF IMPUNITY, SO I CHANGED THE SUBJECT TO PLAZA COSTS. THIS IS FROM THE COSTS IN THE MID 1980's 3 1/2 DECADES AGO]
There are many books with varying amounts of money paid to own the plaza.
To new readers, "la plaza" refers to a place of gathering - a town square, a marketplace, a bullring. Thus "la plaza de armas" is a parade ground or town square, "la plaza de toros" is a bullring, and so forth. Colloquially, however, la plaza refers to a police authority and a police commander's jurisdiction. And so the inquiry "Who's in charge here?" would bring the answer, "Commandante So-and-So."
To the Mexican drug underworld, however, the question has another meaning, a very precise and well-understood meaning. When someone in the drug trafficking world asks who has the plaza, it is interpreted to mean, "Who has the concession to run the narcotics racket?"
From, "Drug Lord: A True Story" - Pablo Acosta, Ojinaga Plaza
The plaza holder has a dual obligation: to generate money for his protectors and to lend intelligence gathering abilities by fingering the independent operators, those narcos and drug growers who try to avoid paying the necessary tribute.
Pablo had to pay 200,000,000 pesos, to have a warrant quashed regarding his murder of a dealer named Fermin. Then worth about a million dollars, approximate 1983
According to DEA, April 1986, Pablo spent $100,000/month for protection to both federal to local gov't in Ojinaga.
Outside traffickers to Ojinaga, paid Pablo $11,000 for the privilege to move drugs through his plaza, (200 lbs. of pot)
Private pilots, charged $10,000 a load, to $40,000 a load to Pablo up to 1,100 lbs. in a twin engine across the border.
Later as cocaine dealers, Carlos Lehder Rivas in Columbia and Amado Carillo Fuentes, started using Pablo's plaza for crossing cocaine into the states. This was 1987. Pablo was paid anywhere from $1,000 to $1,500 per kilo for warehousing and ensuring the safety of the cocaine.
Federal and state police were paid $12 to $17 per pound for protection to cross marijuana across the border at Juarez.
Pablo made a $100,000 "down payment" to the federal police to get off his back, after several smuggling mishaps.
The costs and income of a plaza were big numbers and they are much higher now.
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