PRESENTER: GUY TERRILL GAMBILL
SENIOR JUSTICE FELLOW, 2010-2012
Personal Background and Experience with the Federal Republic
of Mexico:
First came to Mexico in 1973 for one month, staying in Mexico City and
Cuernavaca. Resided in Guadalajara, Jalisco from 1987-89, having visited for
short periods in 1985 and 1986. Lived in the State of Quintana Roo 1996-97, in
Cancun, Playa del Carmen and Tulum. Visited a number of times prior to 2011
and moved back to Guadalajara early that year. My wife and I have three
children and we have one house in the Bugambilias neighborhood of
Guadalajara and a second home on Lake Chapala 50 miles out of the city in
the small town of Jocotepec.
My Extended Family in Guadalajara
My wife, Maria, and her sister Monica
JOCOTEPEC ON LAKE CHAPALA
Residence at Roca Azul, Joctepec
Ivanita, House in Guadalajara
GUADALAJARA AND LAKE CHAPALA AREA
NOTES ON THE MEXICAN JUSTICE SYSTEM
•
The Federal Republic of Mexico operates under a Continental (or “Civil”) legal system
which is quite distinctive from the Common Law System we are accustomed to in the
United States. Under Common Law, case law and statutory provisions form the basis for
the legal system as opposed to legislative enactments and codification as under
Continental legal systems such as that of Mexico. The fundamental basis for the Mexican
civil legal system is the Corpus Juris Civilis, the Old Roman Law codified under the
Emperor Justinian and later refined under the French Napoleanic Code of 1804.
•
For those familiar with the US legal system there are some striking differences. Under a
Continental system the State is entrusted with the guardianship of civil rights---there is no
precise corollary to our 6th and 14th Amendment protections of due process. Thus such
legal practices as arraigo, being held for an indefinite period before being formally
charged, seem very odd to Americans.
DEMOGRAPHICS, FEDERAL REPUBLIC OF MEXICO
•
The Population of Mexico 112.3 million according to the 2010 US Census
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Spanish is the primary language, spoken by 92.7% of the population.
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In addition to Spanish, there are 63 indigenous languages spoken in Mexico.
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5.7% of the population speak Otomi, a Mayan Dialect, Nahuatl, Mixtec or Zapotec
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The largest city is Mexico City (Distrito Federal) with nearly 18 million inhabitants.
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Guadalajara and Monterey are the second and third largest cities with circa 5 million
inhabitants each.
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The overwhelming majority of the population is mesitzo, mixed indigenous and
European ancestry.
•
The Federal Republic of Mexico is divided into 42 States.
POLITICAL MAP OF THE FEDERAL REPUBLIC OF MEXICO
MEXICAN-AMERICAN RELATIONS: PROFOUND ECONOMIC AND SOCIAL TIES
•
Mexico is the third largest trading partner of the United States, after China and Canada.
U.S. goods and services trade with Mexico totaled $500 billion in 2011 (latest data
available for goods and services trade). Exports totaled $224 billion; Imports totaled $277
billion. The U.S. goods and services trade deficit with Mexico was $53 billion in 2011.

There are over 1,000,099 US citizens living in the Federal Republic of Mexico making the
expatriate community the largest in the world.

There are an estimated 12,000,000 undocumented Mexican citizens residing in the United
States. As of July, 2011 there were over 33,558,000 people residing in the United States
who were of full or partial Mexican heritage constituting over 10.8% of the US population.

Over 1,000,000 people cross the border between Mexico and the United States on a daily
basis, making it the most heavily traveled border in the world.

Spanish is the second most spoken language in the United States and English is the
second most spoken language in Mexico. The second largest Spanish-speaking city in the
world, after Mexico City, is Los Angeles.

Over one third of the Continental United States once belonged to Mexico, ceded after the
Mexican American War.
THE WAR ON DRUGS IN MEXICO
2006-2012
La Guerra en Contra las Drogas en la
Republica Mexicana
ADVENT OF THE PAN (PARTIDO ACCIÓN NACIONAL,) AND
THE PRESIDENCY OF FELIPE CALDERÓN 2006-2012
•
The Partido Revolucionario Institucional (PRI) had ruled Mexico In the wake of its
Revolution and remained in power from 1929 until 2000 when the main opposition
party, the Partido Acción Nacional (PAN), was able to win the Executive Office
and ruling authority in Mexico’s Legislature for the first time in the history of the
Republic. A third major political party, the Partido de la Revolución Democrática
(PRD), led by Lopez Obrador, leveled allegations of electoral fraud, during the 2000
national elections which led the PAN to national power under the Presidency of
Vincente Fox Quesada. Fox remained in office until 2006 when President Felipe
Calderón won a second six year term for the PAN. PAN is considered the more
conservative of the three major political parites in Mexico. It was under the
Presidency of Calderon that Mexico greatly stepped up the fight against the Mexican
drug cartels. In 2013, the PRI returned to power in Mexico after a twelve year
absence under the leadership of President Enrique Peña Nieto.
FELIPE DE JESÚS CALDERÓN HINOJOSA
CALDERÓN, BIOGRAPHICAL INFORMATION
•
Felipe Calderón served as President of Mexico from December 1, 2006 to November 30,
2012. He was born in Morelia, Michoacan the youngest of five brothers. His father, Luis
Calderón Vega, was co-founder of the Partido Acción Nacional From a very early age Felipe
was involved with the PAN, distributing leaflets and organizing in his father’s respective
campaigns. After growing up in Morelia, he attended University in Mexico City where he earned
his law degree. He subsequently earned his Master’s Degree in Economics and in the year
2000 he earned a second Master’s in Public Administration from the Kennedy School of
Government at Harvard. During the Administration of his predecessor, Vincente Fox, he had
acted as Secretary of Energy. Prior to his appointment as Minister of Energy, he had served
under the Fox Administration as Director of Banobras, a State-owned development bank. In
2004, he resigned his position as Secretary of Energy amid accusations that he entertained
aspirations of his own after the Presidency, working against the active bid of fellow PAN party
aspirant Creel His nomination, following three rounds of primaries, came as something of a
surprise both within Mexico and abroad. Despite some apparent early advances such as the
legalization of possessions of small amounts of cocaine, his policies on drugs soon took a much
more aggressive turn.
TERRITORY OF THE CARTELS IN MEXICO
THE OAXACA CARTEL
•
The Oxaca cartel is one of the smaller cartels currently operating in Mexico. Early in his
administration, Calderon responded to cartel violence in his native Michoacan and the
neighboring state of Oaxaca by moving against Pedro Díaz Parada, leader of the cartel.
Parada had first been arrested in 1985 and had been sentenced to 33 years in Federal
prison and had subsequently escaped twice. Reportedly, the Oaxca cartel formalized an
alliance with the far more powerful Tijuana cartel in 2003 and Parada, as the cartel’s
lieutenant, became the lead representative in southeastern Mexico. In 2007, Federal
agents again arrested Parada and he is currently serving a life sentence in prison.
However, members of his family and other associates continue to operate interests at the
behest of the Tijuana cartel. The arrest of Parada and the move of the Calderon
administration against its interests and operation in the States of Michoacan and Oaxaca
represented the advent, in earnest, of Federal interdiction efforts against one of the
cartels. From that point forward Federal efforts increased exponentially. The Oaxaca
cartels interests seemingly continue to be run by his brothers, Eugenio Jesús Díaz
Parada and Domingo Aniceto Díaz Parada
THE TIJUANA AND SINALOA CARTELS
•
The Tijuana Cartel devolved out of the original Guadalajara Cartel, founded and run for a
number of years by rMiguel Ángel Félix Gallardodo. Having been arrested and
incarcerated in 1989 Gallardodo had remained one of the major traffickers within the
Federal Republic—this changed following his transfer to a maximum security facility
during the 1990s and his cartel split into two major branches; the Sinaloa cartel and the
Tijuana cartel. The Sinaloa cartel was run by former lieutenants, Héctor Luis Palma
Salazar and Joaquín Guzmán Loera, a.k.a. El Chapo.(El Chapo Guzman). The Tijuana
cartel’s leadership fell to Gallardodo’s nephews. Arellano Félix brothers.
“El Chapo” Guzman
TIJUANA AND SINALOA CARTELS (CONT’D )
•
Of the cartels controlling access to US markets along the border the Tijuana cartel has,
over the course of the past decade, become the least powerful. In 2006, the cartel’s
leader, Javier Arellano Félix, was arrested by the US Coast Guard off the coast of Baja
California. In response to violence which began to spiral out of control as rival factions
within the Tijuana cartel vied for power, President Calderon sent in elements of the
Mexican Armed Forces to restore order in January-February of 2007. One of the key aims
of this Federal, military intervention was to assist in the rooting out of corrupt police,
military and other local officials. The factions within the cartel were led by Teodoro García
Simental, on the one hand, and Luis Fernando Sánchez Arellano (a.k.a. El Ingeniero) on
the other. Simental’s faction favored extortion and kidnapping while that of Arellano
focused primarily on the trafficking of narcotics. In 2008 violence reached unprecdented
levels, drawing even higher levels of military and federal police involvement. Simental
was arrested in 2010. Arellano remains the de facto head of the cartel at this point in time,
though it is widely believed that the Sinaloa cartel basically controls the Tijuana cartel,
leaving Arellano in place largely as a figurehead. Violence has ebbed dramatically in
Tijuana from 2010 forward.
Cartel violence In
Tijuana, 2006-2008
As at the national level, the numbers of people
killed in drug-related violence in the city of
Tijuana between the years 2006-2008 vary
widely. Estimates run as high as 10,000 per year
during the period—the estimates depend, in part,
on whether or not one looks at confirmed
murders, solely, without taking into account the
number of desparecidos (the disappeared,
literally—those who are presumed to have been
killed in related violence but whose deaths are
not confirmed) and whether or not totals include
civilian, military and police deaths together. By all
accounts, Tijuana, during the period and like
other border cities, was extremely violent.
THE BIGGEST CARTEL: THE GULF CARTEL & THE ZETAS
GULF CARTEL AND THE ZETAS
•
Of the three major cartels controlling ac cess to the US market (Tijuana. Sinaloa and Gulf
cartels) the Gulf cartel had, for a number of years, been by far the most powerful. In 1999,
the Gulf Cartel leader, Osiel Cardenas Guillen, contracted a group of over 30 highly
trained and elite members of the Mexican Specail Forces---the units left the Mexican
military and went rogue, taking all of their equipment with them. From 1999 until 2007 the
Zetas did the bidding of the leadership of the Gulf cartel, making the Gulf cartel the most
powerful of all Mexican drug cartels. However, following the arrest and extradition order
from the US against Guillen in 2007, the Zetas decided to break ranks from the Gulf cartel
and they set up a rival trafficking cartel. In 2010, the Zetas made their split with the Gulf
cartel public and violence escalated to horrific levels as the Zetas and Gulf cartel fought
one another for control of large sections of territory in northeastern and north central
Mexico. Under the Calderon Administration most of the leadership within the upper
echelons of the CDG (Cartel del Golfo) including; Osiel Cardenas Guillen, his brothers
Antonio Cardenas Guillen, Mario Cardenas Guillen, and Jorge Eduardo Costilla Sanchez.
Despite the considerable set-backs to the CDG both at the hands of the federal
government and through their bloody inf-fighting with both the Zetas and, sporadically, the
Sinaloa cartel, they still remain the most powerful cartel operating within the Federal
Republic of Mexico.
MIGUEL ANGEL TREVINO MORALES, LEADER OF THE ZETAS,
ARRESTED JUNE 15, 2013 NEAR NUEVO LAREDO
LA FAMILIA MICHOACANA
•
La familia Michoacana had been closely aligned with the Gulf cartel and the Zetas, but
broke away during the course of 2006. Between 2006-2011, La Familia was one of the
major cartels operating in Mexico. Felipe Calderon launched a concerted campaign
aimed at taking down La Familia in his native State of Michoacan. Federal police and
units of the Mexican army moved aggressively into action during the first half of 2009 and
the campaign continued with escalating brutality throughout the course of 2010. The US
government supported the Federal Republic in their fight against the cartel in both the
United States and within Mexico. Nearly 400 cartel members were arrested on both sides
of the border during 2009-2010. One of the cartel’s founders, Nazario "El Chayo" Moreno
González, was killed by Federal forces during the latter part of 2010 and the organization
fragmented into factions, most notably the Knights Templar (Sp. Caballeros Templarios)
and a faction which continued to call itself La Familia Michoacana led by José de Jesús
Méndez Vargas. The two factions fought among themselves but the arrest of Méndez
Vargas in June of 2011 and continuing Federal advances against both factions have all
but destroyed La Familia and its various branches prompting Calderon’s administration to
proclaim the demise of the cartel as a functional entity.
Mixing Drugs and Politics:
Narco-terrorism and political
undertones
Unlike Colombia (with FARC), Peru
(during the heyday of operations by
Sendero Luminoso) or the current
state of affairs in Bolivia—where
President, Evo Morales, arose
directly out of the indigenist
Cocalero movement--left-wing
political collaborations between
revolutionary groups and the cartels
has not materialized. However, the
impact of the cartels upon Mexican
politics has been beyond doubt.
BELTRÁN LEYVA CARTEL
• Beltrán Leyva Cartel: Founded by four brothers, Marcos Arturo, Carlos,
Alfredo and Héctor Beltran Leyva. The cartel was engaged in production,
smuggling and sales of marijuana, cocaine and heroin, as well as, in
prostitution, human trafficking, kidnapping and extortion. During the course of
2003-2005, the BLC’s membershop aligned with the Sinaloa cartel and
engaged in bloody turf wars against both the Gulf and Zeta cartels, resulting
in the deaths of hundreds of people. The last uncontested leader of the BLC,
Héctor Beltrán Leyva, remains currently at large with a bounty of 5,000,000
USD on his head and he is actively being sought on multiple indictments by
both the US and Mexican governments. The last major lieutenant operating
under the BLC, García Montoya (known as “el compayito”) was arrested on
August 11, 2011 and promptted the Mexican Atttorney General to proclaim
that the BLC had ceased to exist as a organization of any import within the
Federal Republic of Mexico. Montoya (also known as “la mano con ojos”)
personally killed over 300 people and ordered the deaths of 500 more. He
had served with the Mexican Marines and received training with the elite
Kabiles in Guatemala.
ÓSCAR OSVALDO GARCÍA MONTOYA, “EL COMPAYITO”
THE JUAREZ CARTEL
•
The Juárez Cartel was founded in the 1970s by boss Rafael Aguilar Guajardo and handed
over, in 1993, to Amado Carrillo Fuentes. Fuentes subsequently died in 1997 and control
of the organization devolved to his brother Vincente Carrillo Fuentes following a rather
bloody spate of internecine rivalry. Under the leadership of Fuentes and his brothers, an
alliance with neighboring cartels was formed and became known as, 'La Alianza Triángulo
de Oro' (the Golden Triangle Allaince), due to its control of the key Mexican border States
of Chihuahua, Sinaloa and Durango. The Alliance involved a tacit working relationship
between the Sinaloa, Juarez and Beltran Levya cartels often erupting in brutal clashes
with the Gulf Cartel and Zetas. The Juarez Cartel’s armed wing is known as La Línea
which derived out of a street gang from Ciudad Juarez. They have also been known to
use another street organization, Barrio Azteca, as enforcers. Their signature, over time,
became decapitation, brutal torture and the public dumping of mutilated corpses to send a
message to authorities or rival cartels. Following the death of Amado Fuentes the Juarez
Cartel declined in influence, though they remain major players due to their control of the
three points of ingress to the US vis-à-vis Ciudad Juarez and neighboring El Paso in
Texas. In 2001, after El Chapo Guzman from the Sinaloa cartel escaped from prison,
many members of the Juarez Cartel defected. The fight between the Sinaloa and Juarez
cartels continues today and thousands of people have been killed in the fighting.
CIUDAD JUAREZ: OVER 10,000 HOMICIDES IN 2004 ALONE
COST OF CALDERON’S WAR ON DRUGS 2006-2012
•
Official estimates of the number of people killed in drug-related violence in Mexico during
the period 2006-2012 range from 47,000-65,000 (CRS report, Apr. 15, 2013). The total
number of homicides during the Calderon Administration has been reported as being
between 100,000 and 125,000. Official numbers on the disappeared (desapercidos) also
vary widely, ranging from 10,000-25,000, again depending on the sources referenced.
•
“In March 2012, the head of the U.S. Northern Command, General Charles Jacoby,
testified to the Senate Armed Services Committee that Mexico had at that time succeeded
in capturing or killing 22 out of 37 of the Mexican government’s most wanted drug
traffickers. General Jacoby noted that their removal had not had “any appreciable positive
effect” in reducing the violence, which continued to climb in 2011.” (CRS, 2013)
•
Among those killed in drug-related violence may be counted over 3,600 police and military
personnel.
•
According to a report by the Cato Institute in 2012, the Calderon Administration spent over
60,000,000,000 USD during its six year fight against the cartels.
•
Greatly eroded public image in the eyes of the world community for the Federal Republic
of Mexico.
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The War on Drugs in Mexico 2006-2012