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Offlinelonestar2004
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Victims blame police
    #4347280 - 06/28/05 05:42 PM (11 years, 5 months ago)

http://www.lmtonline.com/news/s1.htm



Victims blame police
43 to be taken to Mexico City for further questioning


By MIGUEL TIMOSHENKOV
LAREDO MORNING TIMES

NUEVO LAREDO - The 43 people rescued over the weekend have all said they were kidnapped by uniformed Nuevo Laredo city police officers using city patrol vehicles, accompanied by other men wielding guns, in what's believed to be the work of Zetas, federal authorities said Monday.

Authorities have long suspected that there are Zetas, a group of Mexican military deserters who are enforcers for the Gulf Cartel, inside city police departments up and down the border.

Meanwhile, several hundred family members gathered outside military headquarters in Nuevo Laredo, seeking their loved ones among the rescued victims. Some were thrilled to find their relatives; many others left with hearts still heavy, fearing the worst.

Nuevo Laredo Mayor Daniel Pe?a Trevi?o did not return phone calls Monday seeking comment on the statement issued by the national Ministry of Public Safety in Mexico City about the victims' allegations. City spokesman Manuel Antonio Ulloa initially said no such allegations had been made. After he was sent a copy of the official statement, Ulloa no longer returned phone calls.

The 43 victims - 37 men and six women - were kidnapped at various times over the last three months, officials said.

Rafael R?os, a high-ranking official with the Public Safety ministry, confirmed at a news conference late in the day that Nuevo Laredo police officers were involved in kidnapping the victims.

The entire police force was relieved of duty two weeks ago after a federal agent was injured when city police opened fire on a group of federal officers arriving in the city to augment law enforcement efforts. Last week, Pe?a Trevi?o said that 150 officers had been fired because they failed to meet federal standards, but a check of city records shows no one has actually lost his or her job yet.

All 43 people rescued late Sunday night from two homes in a southeast part of the city by a force of about 300 federal and state officers will be taken to Mexico City for further questioning, R?os said. He added that some of the victims are believed to be connected to the Sinaloa Cartel run by "El Chapo" Guzman, the Zetas' rival, but he didn't give any details.

Officers also released the names of the three men arrested during the Sunday night raids at the homes on Loma Real street in the Benito Ju?rez neighborhood. They are Marco Antonio Tapia Escobedo, 35, Miguel ?ngel ?brego Ch?vez, 33 and Fidel Torres Castillo, 34.

The three play a major role in the investigation, officials said, because of their alleged involvement with the gang that guarded the safe houses where the victims were found.

Clearer details emerged Monday about the raids, which officers said were prompted by a man who escaped his captors and was able to identify the safe houses.

As officers and soldiers arrived at the houses, those inside opened fire and threw a grenade at the officers in a futile attempt to get outside the police cordon.

The rescued victims were handcuffed and blindfolded, several were gagged.

In addition to a variety of federal police uniforms, military-style camouflage gear and bulletproof vests with law enforcement insignias, the raiding officers found cell phones, radio equipment, two machine guns, three guns, 300 rounds of ammunition and an unspecified amount of marijuana. Two vehicles also were confiscated; both had Texas license plates.

Gilberto Higuera, deputy attorney general, said federal and state officers continue to search for more safe houses. Rumors that as many as 100 more victims had been rescued Monday morning proved untrue.

"We have information that there is not just one group of kidnappers," Higuera said. "They are several groups of narco-traffickers."

As for the victims themselves, officials would not say whether there were any Laredoans among them.

Family and friends milled around outside the military installation where the rescued victims were being held under armed guard. Several of the victims leaned outside open windows, having shouted conversations with family members outside under the watchful eye of soldiers carrying rifles.

Mar?a de Jes?s Olmos, 69, was among those who didn't find any peace Monday. With a look of infinite sadness, she said her son Melesio Robles Olmos and his wife, Lourdes Chapa, were not among those rescued.

"She's from Laredo, Texas," Olmos said. "She's my daughter-in-law. They disappeared two months ago. Even their truck disappeared."

Others also left disappointed, their hopes dashed.

Sandra L?pez said her husband, Miguel ?ngel Molina, was kidnapped outside their home several weeks ago. The mothers of three young men who disappeared Feb. 21 and the family of a worker who was kidnapped on his way to work on a roof at a ranch three months ago also are still searching for their loved ones.

Then there was the case of a man from Monclova, Coahuila, who was one of the lucky ones. At least partially - he found one brother but discovered the other is deceased.

The man, who is identified only as ?ngel for safety reasons, said he and two brothers were returning home from the United States in March when city police officers stopped them in the downtown area, demanding money. They then were forced to get into a pickup and taken to a place south of the city.

"They robbed my brothers of their money," ?ngel said. "I had money hidden in the sole of my sneaker that they didn't get. They forced us to get into the truck."

He said the city police officers turned him and his two brothers over to some men dressed in black who had their faces covered. He said there were about 30 other people at the place, all handcuffed.

He said he was released after he gave his captors the money he had in his shoe. His documents were taken, and he was beaten, then left naked in a remote part of the city. He was warned not to talk or his brothers would suffer the consequences. Since then, he said, he has been desperately searching for his brothers, unwilling to go home without them.

"My brother is in there (military headquarters). I've talked to him, and he's all right," ?ngel said, then added, his voice breaking: "He said our brother was executed."



06/28/05


--------------------
America's debt problem is a "sign of leadership failure"

We have "reckless fiscal policies"

America has a debt problem and a failure of leadership.

Americans deserve better

Barack Obama


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Offlinelonestar2004
Live to party,work to affordit.
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Registered: 10/03/04
Posts: 8,978
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Re: Victims blame police [Re: lonestar2004]
    #4347292 - 06/28/05 05:46 PM (11 years, 5 months ago)

I use to live in Laredo. and now i live 1 hour and half away.
imagine walking to the south side of town, and it turning into Columbia. that's what is happening over there. IMO

and all we hear about is Iraq and some missing white girl in Aruba.

move along people nothing to see here.


--------------------
America's debt problem is a "sign of leadership failure"

We have "reckless fiscal policies"

America has a debt problem and a failure of leadership.

Americans deserve better

Barack Obama


Edited by lonestar2004 (06/28/05 05:47 PM)


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Offlinelonestar2004
Live to party,work to affordit.
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Registered: 10/03/04
Posts: 8,978
Loc: South Texas
Last seen: 5 years, 8 months
Re: Victims blame police [Re: lonestar2004]
    #4347313 - 06/28/05 05:55 PM (11 years, 5 months ago)

Laredo awaiting promised troopers
San Antonio Express-News ^ | 06/24/2005 | Jeorge Zarazua




LAREDO ? A week after Gov. Rick Perry promised to send additional state troopers here to beef up security in the wake of bloody violence across the border, city officials here said they have yet to see the help.

The governor's office had announced 100 additional troopers would be dispatched in response to Mayor Betty Flores' written plea for help in stopping the violence from spilling into Texas.

"It will be a sizable enough contingent that the people who live there will see the increased security," Perry spokeswoman Kathy Walt said last week.

Pressed for clarification Thursday, the governor's office said troopers are being sent, but their presence might not be so pronounced.

"It is being done as we speak," said Robert Black, another Perry spokesman. "It is being done now."

For security reasons, Black wouldn't say when Laredo residents should expect to notice the reinforcements ? or if any of the troopers had already arrived.

"I don't necessarily think you will see troops dropping out of helicopters on the street," he said.

Black said the 100 extra troopers are being reallocated to this area from the surrounding region, with up to 100 more ready to be called in within an hour's notice if needed.

"Texas will do all that it can," he said against the drug-related violence gripping Laredo's sister city, Nuevo Laredo, Mexico. "But the bottom line is that this is a federal issue."

The two cities are known as "Los dos Laredos" and are a crucial funnel point for truck and train cargo to and from the United States and Mexico.

Tela Mange, a spokeswoman for the Texas Department of Public Safety, declined to talk about the governor's plans to reallocate troopers.

"DPS policy is we don't discuss security issues," Mange said. "We never did say where they are going to be and I can't discuss it more."

The issue of drug-related violence Thursday drew hundreds of concerned residents to gather at street corners in Nuevo Laredo to rally for peace.

The group distributed about 25,000 stickers with an image of a white dove.

"Paz en los dos Laredos, vale la pena," read their campaign slogan, "Peace in both Laredos, it's worth it."

Later in the day, authorities found yet another victim of the violence. An unidentified man was found near Nuevo Laredo's municipal cemetery, nearly naked, his body burned and his hands bound.

The peace group had planned to march earlier in the day, but scrapped the idea out of concern for participants' safety.

Instead, organizers distributed the decals and asked motorists to drive with their headlights on in a show of support for the peace effort.

"The youth are very enthusiastic about the campaign," said Jorge Rosales, a Boy Scout instructor in Nuevo Laredo. "They want to do something so that they won't feel so hopeless."

In Nuevo Laredo alone, more than 70 people have been killed this year, many victims of a violent turf war being fought among drug cartels vying for control of a key smuggling corridor.

Private businesses donated Thursday's stickers, one of which was planted squarely on the chest of Nuevo Laredo Mayor Daniel Pe?a as he walked past the group with an entourage of city leaders.

"I think we all have a duty to seek peace," Pe?a said. "We have to search for peace within ourselves, within our family. That's true peace."

Earlier this week, Perry called upon both the U.S. and Mexican governments to work together rather than "continuing to burden the states with the protection of our citizens along the international border."

He also said it was a coincidence that a $1.2 million grant to pay for a better police radio system in Laredo was being discussed at the time the mayor wrote her letter requesting the money.

That help arrives July 1, Black said.


--------------------
America's debt problem is a "sign of leadership failure"

We have "reckless fiscal policies"

America has a debt problem and a failure of leadership.

Americans deserve better

Barack Obama


Post Extras: Print Post  Remind Me! Notify Moderator
Offlinelonestar2004
Live to party,work to affordit.
 User Gallery

Registered: 10/03/04
Posts: 8,978
Loc: South Texas
Last seen: 5 years, 8 months
Re: Victims blame police [Re: lonestar2004]
    #4347324 - 06/28/05 06:00 PM (11 years, 5 months ago)

they had a police chief killed a few weeks ago. and now the Gov of Texas is thinking about sending down some national guard.

I last few years this town has gone to hell. (i have been 5 times this year.) and can not even explain what i have seen.

I predict in a few years we will see a "black hawk down".


--------------------
America's debt problem is a "sign of leadership failure"

We have "reckless fiscal policies"

America has a debt problem and a failure of leadership.

Americans deserve better

Barack Obama


Post Extras: Print Post  Remind Me! Notify Moderator
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