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Round up — the usual suspects

9 September 2010

With 24,000 recorded denunciations (which probably means the actual number of crimes is much higher) and growing an estimated thirty to fifty percent over just the past two years, a crime statistically tied with the number of narcotics-export related murders that have come to define the  Calderón era has received little attention.  And, if the shoot-outs between various gangster factions, gangster (or alleged gangsters) and the law, and the occasional lynching, sometimes makes it seem as if the  present administration is turning Mexico into the wild west, we shouldn’t overlook the rapid rise in cattle rustling.

Of course, cattle rustling has been known to open up other career opportunities

Cattlemen say the jump in cattle rustling is a result of common criminals taking advantage of a general “climate of insecurity”, while others (unnamed) claim this is the handiwork of the narcotics exporters diversifying their business.  Either — or both — could be true.

If it is just common criminals, it indicates two worrisome facts.  First:  common criminals have easy access to firearms (most of the rusting involves firearms) — meaning despite promises by the United States and supposed cooperation with the Calderón Administration — illegal weaponry is becoming more and more available in this country.

Of the 51,962 persons sent to prison since October 2009, only five were sentenced for cattle rustling.  This is the second worrisome fact.  Whether the rustlers are common criminals or narco-gangsters, it means the crime is being ignored.  If the rustlers are just “ordinary decent criminals”, the inference could be that the administration is too focused on one type of crime to pay attention to crimes that don’t warrant the attention of the United States government and media.

And, if the rustlers are narco-gangs, there’s perhaps an even bigger concern.  The great anti-narco crusade  is doing nothing to lower the access to narcotics among consumers north of the border, and is only encouraging well-trained, violent professional criminals to diversify into what had been just cottage-industry and part-time criminal activities.

3 Comments leave one →
  1. 10 September 2010 7:11 am

    here in my part of Mexico they take care of cattle rustlers the old fashioned way. 1 or 2 a year found dead, very little if any investigation it seems.

  2. steve permalink
    10 September 2010 10:57 pm

    maybe the criminals would make more money by
    kidnapping the cows, and making them phone home, for a large ransom…

  3. Frank permalink
    11 September 2010 2:32 am

    I guess now, we can expect to see convoys of drug cartels riding on cattle through city srteets.

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