Police record another clandestine grave in Guerrero

With more than 150 bodies reportedly found in clandestine graves and 240 people missing thus far this year in Guerrero, Mexico, it is clear the southwest Pacific state has turned into a hotbed for criminal activity, thanks to a potent mix of criminal gangs and official corruption.

These figures, reported by Guerrero's forensic office, include 43 student protesters who went missing in the town of Iguala this September, in an ongoing case that has steadily gained international attention. On October 23, nine new clandestine graves were found in the outskirts of Iguala; these included human remains as well as pens and backpacks, indicating it could be a burial site of some of the missing students, reported El Universal.

The case led to the resignation of Guerrero Governor Angel Aguirre Rivero last week. His replacement, interim governor Rogelio Ortega Martinez, recently announced he planned to create a commission to investigate and bring to justice those responsible for the student disappearances, reported El Universal.

Meanwhile, Mexican NGO the Citizen Council for Public Security and Criminal Justice has claimed that Martinez has ties to the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) dating back to 2002. The NGO said that according to e-mails recovered from a FARC leader's laptop, Martinez once asked FARC representatives in Mexico to lend him money. They also claimed he was linked to a group involved in kidnapping.

InSight Crime Analysis

While the Mexican government has invested significant resources and attention into combating organized crime in neighboring Michoacan, Guerrero has quietly turned into a hub for criminal activity. Last year, Guerrero recorded Mexico's highest murder rate. Meanwhile, the disintegration of Guerrero criminal group Los Rojos -- whose progenitor is the larger Beltran Leyva Organization (BLO) -- reportedly led to a wave of violence earlier this year, as rival gangs battled for territorial control.

SEE ALSO: Mexico News and Profiles

Official corruption has also played a key role in the escalating chaos in Guerrero. Another splinter cell of the BLO, the Guerreros Unidos, is thought to be behind the recent student disappearances, and allegedly worked on behalf of Iguala's mayor and his wife, who are currently both on the run. Meanwhile, 36 municipal police officers had been arrested in connection to the case as of October 18.

Investigations

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
  • 6
  • 7
  • 8
  • 9
  • 10
Prev Next

Colombia Elites and Organized Crime: Introduction

Colombia Elites and Organized Crime: Introduction

The power of Colombia's elites is founded upon one of the most unequal divisions of land in the world. As of the early 21st century, one percent of landowners own more than half the country's agricultural land.1  Under Spanish rule, Colombia's agriculture was organized on the hacienda...

Honduras Elites and Organized Crime: Introduction

Honduras Elites and Organized Crime: Introduction

Honduras is currently one of the most violent countries on the planet that is not at war. The violence is carried out by transnational criminal organizations, local drug trafficking groups, gangs and corrupt security forces, among other actors. Violence is the focal point for the international aid...

Elites and Organized Crime: Introduction

Elites and Organized Crime: Introduction

Organized crime and the violence associated with it is the preeminent problem in Latin America and the Caribbean today. The region is currently home to six of the most violent countries in the world that are not at war. Four of those countries are in Central America...

Special Report: Gangs in Honduras

Special Report: Gangs in Honduras

In a new report based on extensive field research, InSight Crime and the Asociacion para una Sociedad mas Justa have traced how Honduras' two largest gangs, the MS13 and the Barrio 18, are evolving, and how their current modus operandi has resulted in staggering levels of violence...

Bolivia: the New Hub for Drug Trafficking in South America

Bolivia: the New Hub for Drug Trafficking in South America

Transnational organized crime likes opportunities and little resistance. Bolivia currently provides both and finds itself at the heart of a new criminal dynamic that threatens national and citizen security in this landlocked Andean nation.

Justice and the Creation of a Mafia State in Guatemala

Justice and the Creation of a Mafia State in Guatemala

As Guatemala's Congress gears up to select new Supreme Court Justices and appellate court judges, InSight Crime is investigating how organized crime influences the selection process. This story details the interests of one particular political bloc vying for control over the courts and what's at stake: millions...

The FARC 2002-Present: Decapitation and Rebirth

The FARC 2002-Present: Decapitation and Rebirth

In August 2002, the guerrillas of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) greeted Colombia's new president with a mortar attack that killed 14 people during his inauguration. The attack was intended as a warning to the fiercely anti-FARC newcomer. But it became the opening salvo of...

The Urabeños - The Criminal Hybrid

The Urabeños - The Criminal Hybrid

The mad scramble for criminal power in the aftermath of the demobilization of the United Self-Defense Forces of Colombia (AUC) is over. The Urabeños, or as they prefer to call themselves, the "Autodefensas Gaitanistas de Colombia," have won.

Mexico's Security Dilemma: The Battle for Michoacan

Mexico's Security Dilemma: The Battle for Michoacan

Faced with the government's failure to rein in the criminals, communities across crime-besieged Mexico have been trying for years to organize effective civic resistance. Michoacan's vigilantes express the most extreme response by society to date, but other efforts have been less belligerent. In battle-torn cities along the...

Uruguay's Marijuana Bill Faces Political, Economic Obstacles

Uruguay's Marijuana Bill Faces Political, Economic Obstacles

If Uruguay's proposal to regulate the production, sale and distribution of marijuana is properly implemented and overcomes political and economic hurdles, it could be the most important drug regulation experiment in decades.