DEA and Dirty Money; Mexico and the USA

 

Dirty Money

DEA and Dirty Money

Todd Robinson, deputy assistant secretary of the International Narcotics Affairs and Law Enforcement United States government, acknowledged that his country does use agents to infiltrated the Mexican financial system to investigate the flow of washing money to Mexico.

Interviewed on the premises of the National Institute of Penal Sciences (INACIPE), where the U.S. official came to review the implementation of educational resources as part of the Merida Initiative, said that Mexico and the United States will continue working to combat criminal organizations.

When asked about whether U.S. agents have been laundering money in Mexico and if they are covert operations or part of a strategy, the officer replied that “it will use all the tools able to fight organized crime and narcotics trafficking.”

The theme of the infiltration of agents of that country in the Mexican financial system to investigate money laundering flows caused great controversy after The New York Times reported that President Barack Obama has not only implemented strategies of infiltration into the flow of weapons such as the Fast and Furious operation, but also agents of the Federal Drug Enforcement (DEA, for its acronym in English) money launderers Mexican cartels to identify members of these criminal groups. Interviewed after a tour of the INACIPE, Robinson reiterated that the governments of both countries are working on coordinated actions to combat organized crime and drug cartels.

“We have many programs and many ways of collaborating with the Mexican government are partners in this fight against organized crime and narcotics trafficking, and we will continue the collaboration. They are good partners and we will continue with this, “he said. On Sunday, the influential newspaper in the U.S. revealed that the DEA is working with Mexico’s drug cartels to launder money from drug sales in U.S. territory.

The New York Times revealed that the DEA helps Mexico to located and identify unknown amounts or millions of dollars. “undercover U.S. drug agents have washed or smuggled millions of dollars from drug sales, as part of Washington’s growing role in the fight against cartels in Mexico,” presumably on the grounds to detect and identify the strategies used by drug traffickers to launder money, says the report signed by Ginger Thompson, whose base are statements of agents and former agents of the DEA who remain anonymous.

In addition the report highlights that the DEA agents “have handled shipments of thousands of dollars to the border crossing “and even deposit the money in accounts that they designate the same drug or other authorities created by the Obama administration.

 

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Latin American Leaders Demand Action on Illicit Arms Trafficking!

Latin America is the area south of the Rio Gra...

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At the close of the summit, the member countries issued a separate and special declaration (available in pdf format here) defining public security as a precondition for economic and social progress and calling for international cooperation, technical assistance and legislation to combat the illicit trafficking of weapons.

Mexico’s President Felipe Calderon also called on the international community to provide financial and technical assistance to the region and urged his counterparts in Latin America to strengthen legislative controls on the possession and use of firearms, ammunition and explosives.

These calls for a more regional approach to curbing arms trafficking were overshadowed by a controversial outburst from Ecuador’s president, the absence of 11 heads-of-state and the summit’s macro-economic themes.

But inside the summit walls, public security emerged as a top concern and representatives of a region struggling with high rates of violence and criminality used the platform to call for agreement on regulating the international arms trade. The surge in violent crime in Latin America has been particularly devastating to countries that have resources important to drug trafficking networks and relatively weak state institutions. Honduras, for example, is a transit country for the majority of cocaine smuggled out of South America and is on track to have the highest murder rate in the world.

A recent United Nations report (pdf available here) says that 31 percent of the estimated 468,000 intentional homicides committed around the world in 2010 occurred in the Americas. And firearms, which were used in 42 percent of violent deaths, “undoubtedly drive homicide increases in certain regions and, where they do, members of organized criminal groups are often those who pull the trigger,” according to the UN.

The ability of Latin American countries to control firearm availability certainly depends on international cooperation. Unfortunately, weapons transfers can take place on a relatively small scale without triggering attention from federal authorities. A variety of obstacles prevent stricter control over domestic guns sales in the U.S., such as powerful lobbying groups like the National Rifle Association and their congressional allies who block legislation that would tighten federal control over gun sales.

The availability of powerful assault weapons in the U.S. has likely had an effect on violence in the region. An analysis by blogger Diego de Valle illustrates how the expiration of the ban on assault weapons in the U.S. is correlated with rising homicide rates in the war against (and amongst) the drug cartels. Access to U.S. assault weapons may also be related to the rise in incidents of multiple homicides in Mexico.

The U.S. is an important player in controlling the circulation of illegal weapons in Mexico, but it is only one of many. According to arms expert Keith Krause, substantial quantities of weapons seized from Mexico’s criminals originate in Mexico or Central America. Honduras, for example, recently admitted that it cannot account for thousands of guns that disappeared from government warehouses. Many weapons that were funnelled to Central America to fight 20th century conflicts are still circulating today, fueling narcotics-related conflict in Mexico, El Salvador and Guatemala.

But controlling this market is a tall order for any country or region. The illicit global market for small arms and light weapons (SALW) is estimated to be worth approximately $1 billion dollars annually. Trade flourishes in part because of a large gray market of legal guns that become illegal when they are lost or stolen from government stockpiles. Government weapons and ammunition stockpiles that are poorly monitored can be diverted to this gray market with little risk because, in the absence of a universal marking and tracking system, it is difficult to trace to a “legitimate” owner and hold that person accountable.

The long career of international arms dealer Victor Bout, and his eventual capture in a DEA sting explicitly demonstrates of the need for a global treaty on the weapons trade, according to Oxfam International. Despite significant evidence of Bout’s participation in illegal weapons sales, he was able to continue to sell guns and fuel conflict in the world’s worst war zones for two decades.

Currently, only 73 (out of 154) countries regulate trade in light weapons and, of those, only 56 have laws criminalizing their illicit transfer. The lack of a global treaty addressing the trade in SALW allows gun traffickers to avoid both arrest in countries that lack penalties and extradition to countries with comprehensive, enforceable laws.

Currently, commodities like bananas and electronics are highly regulated under international law, but there are no substantial agreements requiring states to monitor and restrict transfers of arms and ammunition around the globe.

This may change. A proposed global Arms Trade Agreement will be debated in the UN next year. And while it will not eliminate the illicit trade in guns, it can reduce the availability of military-grade weapons on the shadowy gray market and clarify the fuzzy boundaries between licit and illict trade in weapons responsible for hundreds of thousands violent deaths. It may also give Latin American and Caribbean governments a template for further regional and domestic action on this issue.

 

Army Stops 8 policemen in Sabinas Hidalgo- Mexico

Map including Sabinas Hidalgo

Map including Sabinas Hidalgo

The Army and Federal Police on Saturday arrested six civilians and eight uniformed officers, all allegedly linked to organized crime in the town of Sabinas Hidalgo,

According to reports, the troops carried out intelligence work for the whereabouts of the alleged members of organized crime and after a series of interviews they gave the names of the soldiers who were in their service.

This information was presented to the Police and they proceeded to arrest the accused.

Among those arrested are members of the state and municipal police of that place.

The 14 people were taken to the State Agency of Investigations, where they  remain in detention while the investigations are ongoing.

So far has no one has leaked the names of the accused individuals connected with the crime.

The officers were in Sabinas state as commissioners to monitoring the municipality because the municipality had been effective dismissed for his ties to organized crime.

Currently some of them are held while they disclaim responsibility for what they are accused.

It should be recalled that on October 14, 11 police patrols and traffic officers in the municipality of Sabinas Hidalgo was arrested by Federal Police and state Civil Force.

The policemen were arrested for their possible links, as well as provide protection to organized crime groups in the state.

The uniformed people, located about 120 kilometers north of this city, were taken to facilities where the state police pay his statement to the authorities.

The Federal Police have since been relocated to the town to strengthen surveillance.

Members of The Sweeper captured! El Chivo and El Beni!

Shield of the Mexican Federal Police (Policía ...

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Members of the Federal Police arrested four suspected members of criminal groups and freed a kidnap victim, as part of the coordinated actions of the Warrior Insurance.

Regional Security Chief of the Federal Police, Luis Cárdenas Palomino, reported that one of the operatives arrested was Martin Campos, alias El Chivo and Ascencio Benito Cardenas, also called El Beni, who are considered alleged criminal group members of the Sweeper.

These individuals were arrested in the vicinity of the Grand Plaza in Acapulco, Guerrero, in possession of two coolers containing human remains and are considered likely responsible for the kidnapping, said the official from the Ministry of Public Security (SSP) federal.

The suspects were holding a 16 year old victim, who was rescued alive, and confiscated  a vehicle, rifle, and several rounds of ammunition, also found was some radio equipment and communications and other documents.

He added that a another person arrested was Joel Ramos, identified as El Indio , and Samuel Castro Oliver Bello, known as El Moreno, alleged members of the criminal group called Independent Acapulco Cartel, a rival criminal organization sweeper .

During the presentation of the four alleged kidnappers at the Command Center Cárdenas Palomino facilities of the Federal Police, they explained that these people were captured in the streets of the Colonial Revival of the port city.

He said that the suspects attempted to board a car and when they noticed the presence of federal agents attempted to escape on foot but were apprehended.

These people were found in possession of two handguns, several rounds of ammunition, two phones, documents, five kilograms of marijuana and 25 doses of a white powder suspected cocaine.

Detainees and the insured will be made available to the Federal Public Ministry will continue with investigations