HomeNewsBriefHRW: Neither Rights nor Security
BRIEF

HRW: Neither Rights nor Security

HOMICIDES / 11 NOV 2011 BY INSIGHT CRIME EN

In this 213-page report, Human Rights Watch (HRW) documents over 200 cases of "killings, torture and disappearances" committed by Mexican security forces. The abuses were committed by police, army and marines, all institutions which have received U.S. aid and/or training.

The report focuses on the five states most significantly affected by drug violence: Baja California, Chihuahua, Guerrero, Nuevo Leon and Tabasco. Some important trends highlighted by HRW include the shortcomings of Mexico's judicial system, with just 22 convictions for offenses tied to organized crime since 2007. This is a mere fraction of the nearly 1,000 investigations into crime-related homicides conducted by the Federal Prosecutor's Office.

The report also criticizes the incompetence of justice officials:

Judges who admit evidence that was likely to have been obtained through torture, prosecutors who obtain 'confessions' from defendants who are being held incommunicado on military bases, and medical experts who omit or play down signs of physical injuries when they examine detainees.

In addition, HRW casts doubt on the legitimacy of the government's own murder statistics. According to HRW, President Felipe Calderon has claimed that 90 percent of the "drug war's" 35,000 victims were involved in criminal activity. HRW questions these numbers due to the lack of convictions, as well as numerous cases in which security forces tampered with crime scenes, in order to make it look like homicide victims died in a shoot-out between rival gangs.

Get full version (pdf) here.

Lea versión en español (pdf) aquí.

share icon icon icon

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.

DONATE

What are your thoughts? Click here to send InSight Crime your comments.

We encourage readers to copy and distribute our work for non-commercial purposes, with attribution to InSight Crime in the byline and links to the original at both the top and bottom of the article. Check the Creative Commons website for more details of how to share our work, and please send us an email if you use an article.

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.

DONATE

Related Content

MEXICO / 16 APR 2021

After the discovery of several elaborate tunnels used to siphon fuel to two hidden warehouses, it's clear that Mexico's gas…

BRAZIL / 15 DEC 2021

A recent study of credit card cloning around the world revealed some startling disparities in the risks customers face across…

JALISCO CARTEL / 5 APR 2022

The deaths of 20 people at a clandestine fight in Mexico’s state of Michoacán has revealed how a fairly small…

About InSight Crime

THE ORGANIZATION

Europe Coverage Makes a Splash

20 JAN 2023

Last week, InSight Crime published an analysis of the role of Amsterdam’s Schiphol Airport as an arrival hub for cocaine and methamphetamine from Mexico.  The article was picked up by…

THE ORGANIZATION

World Looks to InSight Crime for Mexico Expertise

13 JAN 2023

Our coverage of the arrest of Chapitos’ co-founder Ovidio Guzmán López in Mexico has received worldwide attention.In the UK, outlets including The Independent and BBC…

THE ORGANIZATION

InSight Crime Shares Expertise with US State Department

16 DEC 2022

Last week, InSight Crime Co-founder Steven Dudley took part in the International Anti-Corruption Conference organized by the US State Department’s Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, & Labor and…

THE ORGANIZATION

Immediate Response to US-Mexico Marijuana Investigation

9 DEC 2022

InSight Crime’s investigation into how the legalization of marijuana in many US states has changed Mexico’s criminal dynamics made a splash this week appearing on the front page of…

THE ORGANIZATION

‘Ndrangheta Investigation, Exclusive Interview With Suriname President Make Waves

2 DEC 2022

Two weeks ago, InSight Crime published an investigation into how Italian mafia clan the ‘Ndrangheta built a cocaine trafficking network from South America to ‘Ndrangheta-controlled Italian ports. The investigation generated…