Thursday, March 26, 2015



Note: The measures against citizen's human rights, increasing under the PRI as expected. In real life, associates of organized crime groups are seldom penalized. "Fines" should stop the drug cartels in their tracks.

Up to eight years in prison for carrying weapons without permission
Details Published on Thursday March 26, 2015,
Written by Special / The Journal

Mexico, DF.

Reinforce the fight against the 'black market', is the objective in the Senate.
The Senate passed the bill in committee to tighten sanctions on those who possess weapons and explosives, ranging from 30 day fines up to eight years in prison for transferring ownership of a gun without a permit. The legislation voted at the meeting of the Commission for Legislative Studies Second, headed by Alejandro Encinas, which also covers those weapons that clandestinely enter national territory firearms (not reserved for use by the Army, Navy and Air Force) is imposed in three to 10 years in prison and 180-300 days fines.

The project, which includes the minutes sent by the deputies, it is argued that the purpose of this amendment to the Federal Law on Firearms and Explosives is to strengthen the fight against the black market, updating the fines.

The reform seeks to address the need to revise the laws relating to the commission of crimes which affect or may affect the lives and safety of people through increased fines, to make them consistent with the current context of the country.

Also achieve a comprehensive scheme of graduated fines proportionally according to the degree of danger they represent the conduct classified as misdemeanors or felonies.

It was approved that are punishable by 30 to 120 day fines for holders of guns without having applied to the Secretariat of National Defense, and to holders of cartridges or ammunition in an unauthorized or unlicensed way.


Note: $1 a box?

Feds seize 5K rounds of ammo from Pharr (TX) couple
Posted: Wednesday, March 25, 2015 9:00 am

PHARR — Federal agents on Monday arrested two Mexican nationals after discovering 5,860 rounds of assault rifle ammunition that had been destined for Mexico, court records state.
Homeland Security Investigations agents received permission to search a home Monday in the 100 block of West Dicker Road, according to a criminal complaint.

Francisco Javier Mendoza Esquivel, a Mexican national in the country illegally, let agents into the property and said he had 7.62 x 39 mm ammunition in a tool box outside. Agents found about 4,000 rounds of ammo inside the house and another 1,860 rounds in a tool box outside the residence, the complaint states.
Mendoza, 37, told agents he's a convicted drug smuggler in the country illegally — making it against the law for him to possess ammunition.

Mendoza's girlfriend, Carolina Grimaldo Cruz, a Mexican national with permanent residence in the United States, had purchased the ammo via the Internet and it had been delivered to his house on Monday, the complaint states. Grimaldo, 38, told agents that Mendoza asked her to buy the ammunition so he could go target shooting on a ranch.

Mendoza told agents he expected to be paid $100 for every 100 boxes of ammunition he was able to smuggle into Mexico, the complaint states.

The couple remains in federal custody ahead of a court hearing before a U.S. magistrate judge set for Friday.

Tuesday, March 24, 2015



Note: A day north of the former border.

Huge pot growing operation found in Apache Junction
Posted: Mar 18, 2015 5:33 PM MST
Updated: Mar 18, 2015 5:33 PM MST
By Phil BensonCONNECT

The operation was found in an Apache Junction industrial park. (Source: Pinal County Sheriff's Office)
A search uncovered 469 marijuana plants, PCSO said. (Source: Pinal County Sheriff's Office)
An investigation led authorities to a man in Scottsdale. (Source: Pinal County Sheriff's Office)

A search warrant served on a building at an Apache Junction industrial park uncovered a huge marijuana growing operation, the Pinal County Sheriff's Office said.

During a routine business check Saturday night, a sheriff's deputy noticed a strong odor of raw marijuana coming from one of the structures in the area of 4800 block of South Desert View Drive. The Pinal County Sheriff's Narcotics Task Force was notified.

A search of the building uncovered 469 marijuana plants in varying stages of growth, sheriff's investigators said.

Each plant has the potential of producing about four ounces of marijuana with an estimated street value of $287,000.

As the investigation unfolded, authorities said they identified Ross Niemann, 30, of Scottsdale as a suspect.

A search warrant executed on his home led to the discovery of "a usable quantity of marijuana and various pieces of drug-related paraphernalia," according to a PCSO news release.

Investigators said they also found items linking Niemann to the large marijuana grow near Apache Junction.
Niemann was not taken into custody at the time the search warrant was executed.

The investigation is ongoing.

1,079 pounds of marijuana seized after pursuit on Interstate 10
Posted: Mar 19, 2015 1:24 PM MST
Updated: Mar 19, 2015 1:25 PM MST

Two people have been arrested for the alleged possession and transportation of more than a thousand pounds of marijuana.

On March 18, an Arizona Department of Public Safety (DPS) canine officer attempted to stop a white-colored pickup truck for a traffic violation. This happened on northbound SR 90 (Benson area). The driver of the pickup failed to yield, and sped away with the officer in pursuit.

The pickup truck entered onto westbound Interstate 10 at a high rate of speed. Attempts were made to spike the tires of the pickup, and at milepost 280 (Vail area), the pickup ran over the spikes.

With the tires deflated, the truck drove off the road and through the right-of-way fence. As it came to a stop, the two male occupants in the pickup fled on foot.

Multiple agencies began an intense search for the suspects. During the search, the nearby Acacia Elementary School was placed on lock down for about an hour.

About two hours later, the two suspects, Lance Schilling, 19, and Brent Jackson, 26, both from Phoenix, were taken into custody. From the pickup, officers seized 1,079 pounds of marijuana, which has a street value of $540,000.

Schilling and Jackson were booked into the Pima County Jail on charges of possession of marijuana, transportation for sale of marijuana, and felony flight.


Arizona Department of Public Safety Canine Officer Seizes Nearly $200,000 in Cash on Traffic Stop
DPS continues interdiction efforts with another seizure
Wednesday, March 18, 2015 -

On March 17, 2015, the Arizona Department of Public Safety (DPS) recovered $196,040 after the driver of a passenger car was stopped for traffic violations on Interstate 40 and milepost 199 near Flagstaff. The Highway Patrol officer observed numerous indicators of criminal activity and a search of the vehicle was conducted. The search led to the seizure of the cash which was believed to be connected with a crime and charges filed against the driver.

DPS will continue these interdiction efforts in order to continue its overall mission to protect human life and property.

The investigation remains ongoing.

Feds seize $104K in meth at border station
Posted: Mar 19, 2015 4:00 PM MST
Updated: Mar 19, 2015 4:03 PM MST
By Phil Benson

Meth found hidden in tires at Arizona border station. (Source: U.S. Customs and Border Protection)

An Arizona teen and a Mexican national were arrested in separate meth seizures at a southern Arizona border inspection station.

A 24-year-old man from San Luis, Sonora, Mexico, was taken into custody Wednesday after a U.S. Customs and Border Protection narcotics detection dog alerted agents to the vehicle's spare tire.
Officers said they found 30 packages of meth valued at almost $103,000.

Earlier in the day, a narcotics detection dog alerted agents to the front seat of a 17-year-old man's vehicle. Officers said they found more than half a pound of meth with an estimated value of $1,650.

Officers seized the drugs and vehicles, and referred both subjects to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's Homeland Security Investigations.

Read more:

Friday, March 20, 2015



Note: Yes, legal immigration, seasonal employment, can work. The Bracero program not perfect, but overall worked well.

Thousands come to Nogales on way to temporary work
From the front: Alejandro Torres Villella, 40, Luis Angel Gonzalez Reynaga, 22, and Juan Carlos Temblador, 23, all temporary workers from a mid-size town in Nayarit, Mexico, are on their way to Chinook, Mont. where they will be calving on a ranch. Gonzalez said they were told they would be paid around $1,100 biweekly.

Posted: Friday, March 20, 2015 8:11 am | Updated: 9:14 am, Fri Mar 20, 2015.
By Murphy Woodhouse
Nogales International

To keep out of the rain, dozens of Mexican men leaned against the walls of the downtown Burger King Wednesday night as they waited for 15-passenger vans to come and pick them up.

They kept a close eye on their tightly packed suitcases, which contained most of what they would need for the next six or more months as they work as temporary employees for U.S. farms and businesses as far flung as Slidell, La.; Rupert, Idaho and Chinook, Mont. Some would complete their journey by van, others by plane.

Miguel Angel Cabrera, a 21-year-old from the central state of Guanajuato en route to Idaho to lay irrigation in alfalfa and potato fields for the fourth year running, was on the phone with family members. He wanted to let them know he had made it safely to the United States and that he'd soon be hard at work with his father and sending money home.

"It's a good opportunity, and you've got to know how to take advantage of it," Cabrera said of the temporary worker program that had brought him across the border.

The crowd at Burger King was just a small slice of the Mexican nationals who work seasonally in the United States on any given year on either H-2A visas, which are for agricultural work, or H-2B visas, which are for any other temporary work. Last year, U.S. consular offices in Mexico issued about 155,000 such visas, roughly 57,000 of which were for non-agricultural work, according Julianne Parker, a vice consul in Monterrey, Mexico.

Nearly 310,000 H-2A and H-2B visa holders were admitted into the country in Fiscal Year 2013, according to Department of Homeland Security statistics. Nationals from 63 countries are allowed to participate in the program, though Mexicans are far and away the most represented nationality, according to Parker and the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service, which helps manage the programs.

While the lion's share of temporary Mexican workers are processed at the U.S. consulate in Monterrey, a little shy of 10,000 come through Nogales each year and are largely destined for agricultural work in the Western United States, said Megan Phaneuf, section chief for the U.S. Consulate in Nogales, Sonora. Few are from Sonora, she added.

"They typically come from Southern Mexico," Phaneuf, said. "We're not seeing a lot of homegrown workers that are coming from Sonora. We're going to see folks from Michoacan, Oaxaca, Guerrero, Nayarit, Jalisco; the southern states of Mexico."

Most of those at the Burger King Wednesday night were from Sinaloa and on their way to gardening work in Louisiana.

With growing seasons starting across the country as temperatures rise, seasonal workers become a common sight in the spring at the fast food restaurant, as well as at the nearby McDonald's, which also functions as a spot to catch vans.

Though in town only briefly, the seasonal workers' presence can be felt at the Dennis DeConcini Port of Entry, where groups of 50 or more line up almost nightly in peak season, and in Nogales, Sonora, where hotels and other businesses cater to the annual influx.

Rules to follow

To bring in temporary workers from abroad, U.S. employers have to prove several things to the Department of Labor before they can submit a petition with USCIS.

Most importantly, they must show that there aren't enough "able, willing, qualified, and available" U.S. workers to fill the jobs at the advertised wages, according to the DOL website. They must also demonstrate that the temporary workers will not adversely impact the wages of "similarly employed U.S. workers" and that their positions are temporary.

"When they've certified all that they can come to Mexico and try to find other workers and those workers are tied to the employer that is petitioning for them," Parker said.

H-2B visas are capped at 66,000 annually, though there is no limit on agricultural visas, which have risen dramatically in recent years. More than 204,000 were issued in FY 2013, compared to less than 50,000 in the mid-2000s, according to government data and several reports on the programs. That figure represents a significant part of the roughly 2.6 million workers directly employed by farms.

In FY 2014, there were 5,488 employer petitions for H-2B workers and 6,672 for H-2A, the vast majority of which were quickly approved, according to data from the DOL's Office of Foreign Labor Certification.

For their part, Mexican workers who have been selected by employers or intermediaries have to go through several days of interviews, fingerprinting and other processes at U.S. consular offices before their visas are issued. Though some pay middlemen for assistance with paperwork, most of the costs are borne by employers.

"These workers don't have to pay to get put on these petitions... They don't have to pay for their visas, they don't have to pay for their transportation," Phaneuf said, adding that housing costs are also frequently covered. Parker clarified that only H-2A employers are required to cover visa and transportation costs, though many H-2B employers do nevertheless.

The workers interviewed for this story mostly cited anticipated wages of around $10 an hour, vastly outstripping the $10 they said they could earn in a day in their home communities. Parker said that temporary worker employers are held to minimum wage laws, and even those who pay piece rates must ensure that the money earned never falls below state or federal wage floors.

Cabrera said much of his money was going towards a house that is still under construction back in Guanajuato.
"It's coming together little by little," he said. "It will be two more years until it's finished."

Fair treatment

Over the roughly century-long history of formal temporary work programs in the United States, the arrangements have been criticized for putting foreign workers at the mercy of exploitative employers and lowering the wages and working conditions of U.S. employees.

During the Bracero Program, which lasted from 1942 to 1964, more than 4.5 million Mexicans worked temporarily in the United States. While many made good money that went back to families in Mexico, complaints of withheld wages, poor work and living conditions, heavy debts to company stores and other illegal practices were widespread.

Analogous criticisms have been made of the H-2 programs by groups like Farmworker Justice and the Southern Poverty Law Center, which described them as a "modern-day system of indentured servitude" in a recent report. However, Parker and Phaneuf said there are policies in place to prevent the worst parts of that history from being repeated.

Parker said that consular offices can ask USCIS to review petitions if they hear complaints from workers about specific employers.

"We always ask them about their working conditions," she said. "Generally most of the good information we get is from guys who changed companies."

If sufficient evidence is gathered, petitions can be revoked for a year, which can spell significant crop losses or production declines for employers. However, Parker added that it "requires a lot of information" to do so.

"It's only a temporary fix on our end, but it is a pretty big detriment to the farmers or employers because they're not getting any workers," Parker said. "It is a pretty big tool that we have."

Additionally, consular staff can request that the DOL inspect employers if they believe there is sufficient reason to believe that abuses are occurring, though the department's staff for such inspections is "pretty small," Parker said.

When asked, none of the returning workers interviewed said that they had been mistreated by their employers and most said they intended to continue doing the work for the foreseeable future.

For Elvio Miranda, a 53-year-old from a small town in the Gulf Coast state of Veracruz, temporary work in the U.S. is a desirable alternative to low-wage lime picking at home, as well as crossing the border illegally in search of work.

"I don't want to have trouble with migration," Miranda said, referring to federal immigration agents.


Thursday, March 19, 2015



Note: "Authorities agree"

Reiterates ban on armed civilians
Details Published on Wednesday March 18, 2015,
Written by Special / El Diario


Authorities agree that there are no longer any reason to continue operating self-defense groups.

The Coordination Group Michoacán, which integrate state and federal authorities, reaffirmed its position of not allowing armed civilians has made public security work and install checkpoints on state highways.

The governor Salvador Jara Guerrero and special control for security in Michoacán, Felipe Gurrola Ramírez, reiterated that after the dismantling of the dominant criminal group in the state there are no longer grounds for self-defense groups continue to operate in the state.

At the meeting held at Government House, Secretary of Public Security in the state, Javier García Ocampo, said yesterday met in the Nahua community of Ostula with community leaders of guards in the town of Aquila and community authorities in Coahuayana, Coalcomán and Chinicuila.

Military commanders and officers of the security areas at federal and state levels analyzed the objectives to be attacked in the state to continue dismantling outposts of criminal groups.

Before starting the meeting, Governor Salvador Jara Guerrero thanked the commanders of the military zones, located in Michoacan, for its rapid intervention to assist people affected by climate contingency last weekend.


Wednesday, March 18, 2015



Arizonans tell senators Southwest border 'is not secure'
March 18, 2015 @ 2:25 pm

Cochise County Sheriff Mark Dannels told a Senate committee that many of his constituents along the border are afraid to leave their homes because of border security problems. (Cronkite News Photo/Jessica Boehm)
WASHINGTON -- Local law enforcement must be involved in securing "the rural parts of the Southwest border," which is still dangerously insecure, Cochise County Sheriff Mark Dannels told a Senate panel Tuesday.

"Sheriffs are a direct voice of trust in their respective counties so I think it's important that we continue that voice with the sheriffs," said Dannels, who told the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee not to "ignore us."

Dannels' testimony came during a two-hour hearing that brought residents and officials from Texas and Arizona to Washington to share their "perspectives from outside the Beltway" on Southwest border security.

The committee chairman, Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Wis., said it was the first in a series of hearings and roundtable discussions focused on problems along the Southwest border. Witnesses Tuesday had plenty to share.

"I want to be crystal clear: The border is not secure," said Chris Cabrera, a Border Patrol agent who was testifying on behalf of the National Border Patrol Council.

Cabrera said some people don't realize the extent of border issues because the Department of Homeland Security uses data that inaccurately shows that border patrol agents are "75 percent effective in apprehending illegal immigrants and drug smugglers."

A more realistic metric is somewhere between 35 - 40 percent - and that percentage is even lower when dealing with experienced criminals in the drug cartels, he said.

Dannels said trafficking of drugs and people has "diminished the quality of life" for residents of Cochise County and placed "unbearable strain" on the county's budget and resources.

Howard Buffett, chairman and CEO of the Howard G. Buffett Foundation, owns two ranches in southern Arizona, one on the Mexico border.

"When you live or operate close to the border, it's like living in another world," Buffett testified.

He said that security problems along the Southwest border have created "a serious humanitarian crisis," which has caused "people to die attempting to reach our country while putting our own citizens at risk."

"Those who live in communities along our border assume a higher risk to their personal safety that can be frightening and at times deadly," Buffett said.

Dannels laid the problem squarely at the feet of federal officials, whose changes to border priorities in the 1990s forced illegal activity into the rural areas along the border.

"I am not proud to say that today we are a product of the federal government's plan," Dannels said.

Dannels said that fear is rampant along the border - with many of his constituents afraid to leave their homes.

"It's just a horrible way to live when we live in the United States," he said.

Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., said at the hearing that the border can be secured through proper use of assets, strategies and technology.

"Those who say, well you just can't do it - they obviously are incorrect because every nation has the obligation to have a safe and secure border," McCain said.

He pointed to his introduction Tuesday of the "Arizona Borderlands Protection and Preservation Act," which would grant Border Patrol agents access to federal land anywhere along the Southwest border for security and surveillance activities.

Dannels had said earlier that federal efforts should focus on "border security first, immigration reform second."

The crime associated with illegal immigration has diminished the sense of security of people in the rural Southwest, he said, pointing to a sharp decrease in the population of Cochise County.

"People are leaving our county because of the way it is," he said. "They don't want to live in fear."

By bringing local stakeholders to the table, Dannels said the government will be able to create better solutions to the complex problems faced by Cochise County residents.

"Those that choose to live on our border should deserve the same freedom and liberty as those that live here in D.C., Iowa and beyond," Dannels said.


Tuesday, March 17, 2015



Note: How about a day in the life just south of the former AZMEX border.

Comment: On their way to sanctuary in the U.S.?

Arrested by PEI in Nogales for shooting of Choix, Sin. mayor.
Details Published on Saturday March 14, 2015,
Written by Staff / El Diario


Two people involved in the armed attack on the Mayor of Choix, Sinaloa, Juan Raúl Acosta Salas, which injured five others were arrested by agents of the State Police on this border.

Reports indicate that the PGJE know about, Nora Espinoza Haimee Acuña, who is originally from Empalme, Sonora and Victor Agustin Reyes Macedo, a native San Blas, municipality of El Fuerte, Sinaloa.

These people are identifiedin the armed aggression suffered by the Mayor of the municipality of Choix, Sinaloa and five others accompanying him in events of March 6 this year.

Both people were taken, by air, to the city of Los Mochis, Sinaloa pursuant to a search warrant, location and presentation delivered by the Deputy Public specializing in the crime of intentional homicide in Ahome
Common Law.

The armed aggression was raised on the road from Los Mochis to Choix, at the height of the Tetamboca community in the municipality of El stronger.

In this place armed men aboard a van from the GMC brand, line Yukon, gray, Model 2000, shot with an AK-47 rifle against passengers in a Suburban, model 2014, owned by the City of Choix.

In the vehicle traveling were Mayor Acosta Salas, who was the driver; and Maria Luz Lerma Lopez and Rosario Acosta Salas, wife and sister of Mayor respectively.

Also, Leonardo León Palafox, Assistant to the Mayor; Clemente Soto Miranda and Lauro Melchor Cotan Chavez, who is Treasurer and Director of Social Development of the municipality respectively. All of them, except for Rosario Acosta, were injured in said armed aggression.

After the attack, the attackers left the area due to a unit of the municipal police approaching , leaving the Yukon truck abandoned on a dirt road located about a kilometer away from where the armed attack occurred.

The Attorney General of the State of Sinaloa, Marco Antonio Higuera Gomez, reported that as a result of intelligence work and research conducted by staff of the Public Ministry and by a panel of the Ministerial Police, in coordination with the Attorney General of Sonora, the location was found in Nogales of Nora Haimee Espinoza Acuña and Víctor Agustín Reyes Macedo.

In his ministerial statement both say they are pair, living in Nogales, Sonora where engaged in drug dealing and confessed having participated in the acts for which they are accused.


Note: and a bit to the south-east.

Drug Violence in the Sierra Tarahumara leaves four executed
March 14, 2015
by Staff

Chihuahua, Chih. ( .- Four men were executed this week in the town of Uruachi, located in the Sierra Tarahumara, officials said.

The most recent case occurred last Thursday 12th at La Finca community, when a group of armed men killed Balbanedo Ramirez Alvarez and Manuel Mendoza Bertin.

The bodies were found around 13:40 hours on the road to Los Táscates to Gosogachi, shot in the head.

Baldenedo Ramirez lived in the community of Gosogachi and Manuel Bartin in La Villa, in the same municipality.

On Tuesday, 10 were killed with guns Mario Alberto Salcido Marquez, 28, and Jose Adolfo Marquez , 23, in Las Tinajas community.

The District Attorney West came forward to say that the double murder was due to personal grudges victims with a rival group. For this case, so far, no arrests in these cases.

Mario Salcido died of hypovolemic shock by bullets and José Márquez from head trauma.

In that town, a month ago, three men were executed in an armed confrontation between criminal groups.

The facts were disclosed by citizens Uruachi and confirmed by the spokesman for the prosecutor Zone West, Alexandra Lara Meraz, who said that because of the remoteness of the place, they only have the names of the victims.

Residents of the community of Aracoyvo indicate that these criminal groups that have long are settled in that region.

The bodies were found in the creek Las Tinajitas near Jicamórachi, a town that was taken two years ago by an armed group.

The fear of the people by the climate of violence inhibited the following Monday to manslaughter registered on 11 February, dozens of families Aracoyvo not come to receive the monthly support of Progresa.

Victims also were shot in the head. They are: Sergio Antonio Aguilar Rivas, 27; Guadalupe Alcalá Meraz, 62, and Omar Alcala Ponce, 32.


Saturday, March 14, 2015



AG Brnovich Letter on In-State Tuition for Undocumented Students
March 9, 2015

Hon. Raul Grijalva
Hon. Ann Kirkpatrick
Hon. Ruben Gallego
1218 Longworth House Office Building
Washington, D.C. 20515

To Raul Grijalva, Ann Kirkpatrick, and Ruben Gallego, members of congress:

Thank you for your letter dated March 3rd, 2015, concerning in-state tuition for those without lawful status in the United States. In November of 2006, Proposition 300 was approved with more than 70% of the vote, reserving cetiain taxpayer funded benefits to citizens, legal residents, and persons who otherwise have lawful immigration status. The voters were clear on this subject:

"A person who is not a citizen of the United States, who is without lawful immigration status and who is enrolled as a student at any university under the jurisdiction of the Arizona board of regents or at any community college under the jurisdiction of a community college district in this state is not entitled to tuition waivers, fee waivers, grants, scholarship assistance, financial aid, tuition assistance or any other type of financial assistance that is subsidized or paid in whole or in patt with state monies." (A.R.S. § 15-1825(A)).

The United States Citizenship and Immigration Service, which you cite with authority, makes clear that "[D]eferred Action does not confer lawful status upon an individual." In Arizona
Dream Act Coalition v. Brewer the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that "DACA recipients enjoy no formal immigration status." Indeed, the Constitution reserves this power for Congress.

("The Congress shall have the power to ... establish a uniform rule of naturalization." Article I, Section 8, Clause 4).

As the Attorney General I have taken an oath to uphold and enforce the law and to defend the Constitutions of Arizona and of the United States. Here, the people of Arizona have spoken
unambiguously and their elected and appointed representatives, including the community colleges and my office, are bound to follow.

Mark Brnovich
Attorney General of Arizona