Saturday, August 28, 2010

The Beat: Death in Juarez: Two Burned Alive, Three Presumed Extortionists, Others

At 10:30 a.m. on Friday the bodies of two men were found murdered in a Chrysler Voyager, in Col Los Nogales. One apparently tried escaping, as the door was open and a leg was hanging out.

More Junk Yard Mysteries: Ten minutes later two men were found dead in the patio of the office of a junk yard called "yonke 68 Zaragoza," on the Juarez-Porvenir highway. Moments after the assassination newspaper reporters came, and observed federal and municipal police agents arrive. The dead men were identified as federal police, Aldo Holguín Crespo and Aurelio Iván Musiño Reyes, 27 and 29, respectively, shot shortly after arriving in a 2008 Nissan Altima to pick up some used parts. As Diario reporter Luz del Carmen Sosa relates it (click here) when federal police learned the dead men were federal agents they ordered the municipal police to leave the scene. They entered the office and began to question the owner, Alberto, and an employee of his. The owner explained that moments after the federal agents arrived gunmen came in and started shooting. One of the agents tried to flee between some cars but was hit by gunfire. Federal agents confiscated Alberto's cell phone and radios and then began to arrest Alberto. They took him outside and asked him to put his hands on the hood of a car. While he was doing this a federal agent took the butt of his rifle and smacked Alberto on the forehead with it. He began to bleed profusely, and a witness offered him a handkerchief to wipe off the blood from his face. Witnesses explained that Alberto had been present during the attack on the federal agents but had not participated in it. Federal agents arrested Alberto anyway, as well as an employee of his.

Junk yard owners have complained to Diario that they are often required to sell stolen used car parts brought in by the very persons who extort money from them, and then hand over the proceeds to the extortionists. And speculation about the motive for the killings began among witnesses, who indicated the 2008 Nissan Altima the dead agents were driving is far above the financial ability of a young federal police officer to afford--new automobiles carry high tariffs and many persons in Juarez purchase used vehicles brought in from the U.S. at no tariff as long as they are more than seven years old. Witnesses also explained that Alberto had rented out his license to sell junk cars to someone else three months ago, but was using the lot to try to sell a used Mustang a few weeks ago when federal agents driving an Eclipse offered him their car plus two thousand pesos (about $150) in exchange for the Eclipse. When he said no the agents threatened to take the car anyway, and Alberto finally caved in and lost his Mustang.

Presumed Extortionists Killed: Three men were found dead with signs of torture, hands bound, and faces covered with tape, last night at about 11 p.m. in an empty lot behind Wal-Mart. There was a sign next to one of the bodies saying, "For Being Extortionists."

Burned Alive: At about 5:30 yesterday morning neighbors heard noises in an empty lot in col.
Ángel Trías. According to one witness a man was taken out of a Dodge Caravan, still alive. Shots were heard (although no empty cartridges were found) and the man's body was then set on fire and the Caravan left. No signs of violence were found on his body, except for the burns. The man had on only cowboy boots and he was found face down.

Then last night, just before 9 p.m., in Col. 9 de Septiembre near Jimenez and Delicias, witnesses saw several men get out of a black SUV. They threw gasoline on the body of one of the men from the car, and then lit a match. Witnesses heard the man screaming and at least one person tried to put out the flames with a bucket of water, but it was too late.

Burned Bodies Found in Chihuahua: At about 8 a.m. yesterday the bodies of 9 men shot to death and then tossed into the cabin of a 1998 or 1999 Ford Expedition and incinerated, were found at km. 23.5 on the Chihuahua-Juarez highway just north of Chihuahua. Fifteen spent 9 mm. cartridges were found near the vehicle.

Compiled from stories in Diario. El Mexicano, Nortedigital

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