Feds Crack Down On Illegal Border Crossings: Arizona/Mexico? No Way. Try Washinton State/British Columbia, Canada


McAuley’s World Comments:

The Pacific Crest Trail begins in Canada, crosses into the United States and continues for about 9 miles before crossing back into Canada. The trail later crosses back into the United States and continues for 2600 miles, all the way to Mexico. This article deals with the 9 miles of trail that that are bordered by “Canadian Trail” at each end ….. I do believe that asking a hiker for their ID is permitted along the Pacific Crest Trail … 

Feds warn Pacific Crest Trail hikers about crossing border

MAZAMA — For the first time, Pacific Crest Trail hikers are being warned that people who hike across the border from Canada into the United States are committing a federal crime, and risking a year in jail and a $5,000 fine.

In a June 1 letter to the Pacific Crest Trail Association, the U.S. Border Patrol urged the group to educate their members and other hikers to cross the border only at designated ports of entry.

The 2,650-mile Pacific Crest Trail, which goes from Mexico to Canada, crosses the U.S. border in the Pasayten Wilderness and continues for about nine miles to the Manning Provincial Park in British Columbia.

The nearest port of entry is 50 miles to the west, at Sumas, Whatcom County, or more than 50 miles to the east, at Nighthawk or Oroville,

Pacific Crest Trail

 Okanogan County.

Beth Boyst, a U.S. Forest Service manager who oversees Pacific Crest Trail issues, said she’ll be meeting with the Border Patrol in the next few weeks to determine the best ways to comply with security needs while accommodating hikers.

“The Forest Service is trying to work out something with the Border Patrol to try to figure out how to allow for passage in a legal way,” she said.

Danielle Suarez, Border Patrol spokeswoman in Spokane, said the warning doesn’t apply to people who cross into Canada from the United States. That’s up to Canada to enforce, she said.

Cartel Controlled "Coyote Trail", Arizona

Suarez said the letter is an effort to educate hikers that everyone entering the United States must go to a designated port of entry — even hikers on the Pacific Crest Trail. She said there was no specific incident that prompted the letter to the trail association.

“We just want to create that awareness, so it doesn’t get to a point where there are criminal penalties,” she said.

Suarez said the Border Patrol is checking that part of the border, and other trails on or near the border, for people crossing illegally.

Mike Dawson, trail-operations director for the Pacific Crest Trail Association, said he’s hoping there can be some exceptions for hikers, but even strict enforcement won’t impact a lot of the hikers — particularly not those who try to make the journey in one year.

Nearly all of those hikers travel from south to north, because there’s still snow in the North Cascades long after hiking season starts in Southern California.


He said there are people who hike sections of the trail, some of them attempting to hike the entire trail a section at a time, and others just out to enjoy part of the national scenic trail.

“If the Border Patrol determined they were going to simply not allow anybody to cross from Canada into the United States from that location in any circumstances, we would probably suggest people doing section hikes should do it south-to-north” on that section, he said.

Dawson said the association has already set up a method for dealing with hikers traveling into Canada.

Hikers can download a form from the association’s website that should be filled out. It shows the types of identification needed, and when people finish the trail, they end up at Manning Provincial Park headquarters, where they can turn in their form and show their identification.

To get home, he said, many people take a bus or other transportation from the park to one of the designated border crossings, where they’ll have to be ready with a passport to get back into the United States.


Obama’s Immigration Speech 07/01/10: “Our Borders Have Never Been Safer”

”The State Department, meanwhile, announced new travel restrictions Friday for U.S. government employees working away from the border in Mexico and Central America. As of July 15, they and their families are barred from crossing anywhere along Texas’ border, north or south, because of safety concerns. The U.S. government continues to urge Americans to exercise extreme caution or defer unnecessary travel to certain parts of Mexico.”




U.S. extends travel warning to Mexico

Vehicle Ambushed By Cartel Killers

May 7, 2010

The U.S. State Department on Thursday extended a travel warning that had been issued for Mexico because of the region’s high level of drug and gang violence.

The State Department warning also notes that the authorized departure of family members of U.S. government personnel from U.S. consulates in the northern Mexico border cities of Tijuana, Nogales, Ciudad Juarez, Nuevo Laredo, Monterrey and Matamoros has been extended.

The State Department issued similar warnings in March and April.

The Mexican government said in April that more than 22,700 people have been killed in drug-related violence since December 2006.

“While most victims of violence are Mexican citizens associated with criminal activity, the security situation poses serious risks for U.S. citizens, as well,” the State Department warning says.

Much of the recent violence has occurred in northern Mexico.

Hours-long gun battles are common, and U.S. officials were forced earlier this year to temporarily close the consulate in Reynosa, a city in Tamaulipas state.

“More than half of all Americans killed in Mexico in FY 2009 whose deaths were reported to the U.S. Embassy were killed in the border cities of Ciudad Juarez and Tijuana.”

The State Department targets six Mexican states as particularly dangerous.

“Recent violent attacks and persistent security concerns have prompted the U.S. embassy to urge U.S. citizens to defer unnecessary travel to Michoacan and Tamaulipas, to parts of Chihuahua, Sinaloa, Durango and Coahuila and to advise U.S. citizens residing or traveling in those areas to exercise extreme caution,” the warning says.


Assistant Attorney General for the State of Chihuahua, Mexico Assassinated in Ciudad Juarez

Mexican Federal Police Investigate Death of Officer; White wall marks U.S. Border

CIUDAD JUAREZ, Mexico (AP) — Gunmen have killed an assistant attorney general for northern Chihuahua state and one of her bodyguards in the violent border city of Ciudad Juarez, Mexico.

Authorities reported today that the sport utility vehicle carrying Sandra Salas Garcia and two bodyguards was chased by armed assailants through the darkened Juarez streets and riddled with bullets Wednesday night.

Attorney General’s Office spokesman Arturo Sandoval says the second bodyguard was seriously wounded.
Salas was responsible for evaluating the work of prosecutors and special investigations units in Chihuahua.

Drug violence has killed more than 4,300 people in recent years in Ciudad Juarez, which is across the Rio Grande from El Paso.


Sandra Salas Garcia's car was riddled with bullets

Mexican Murder Suspect In U.S. Consulate Killings: US Consulate Infiltrated

MEXICO CITY, Mexico (AP) —

The drug-cartel enforcer told an unsettling story: A woman who worked in the Mexican border’s biggest U.S. consulate had helped a rival gang obtain American visas. And for that, the enforcer said, he ordered her killed.

Nonsense, says a U.S. official, who said Friday the motive for the slaying remains unknown.

The employee, Lesley Enriquez, and two other people connected to the U.S. consulate in the city of Ciudad Juarez were killed March 13 in attacks that raised concerns that Americans were being caught up in drug-related border violence.

Jesus Ernesto Chavez

Jesus Ernesto Chavez, whose arrest was announced Friday, confessed to ordering the killings, said Ramon Pequeno, the head of anti-narcotics for the Federal Police. Pequeno said Chavez leads a band of hit men for a street gang tied to the Juarez cartel.

Enriquez and her husband were killed in Ciudad Juarez, across the border from El Paso, Texas, as they drove toward a border crossing. Chavez also is accused in a nearly simultaneous attack that killed the husband of a Mexican employee of the consulate.

Pequeno said Chavez told police that Enriquez was targeted because she helped provide visas to a rival gang.

A U.S. federal official familiar with the investigation said Friday that after the killings, U.S. officials investigated possible corruption involving Enriquez and found none. The official was not authorized to speak about the case and spoke on condition of anonymity.

The official said the motive behind the killing remains unclear.

Officials with the U.S. Embassy in Mexico City declined to comment. At the U.S. Justice Department in Washington, spokeswoman Tracy

American Consulate Ciudad Juarez

 Schmaler law enforcement “continues to work closely with our Mexican counterparts to bring to justice individuals involved in these murders.”

U.S. Embassy officials previously said that Enriquez was never in a position to provide visas and worked in a section that provides basic services to U.S. citizens in Mexico.

Mexican police provided no further details from Chavez’s confession on how Enriquez might have helped provide visas to a drug gang.

Enriquez was four months pregnant when she and her husband, Arthur H. Redelfs, were killed by gunmen who opened fire on their vehicle after the couple left a children’s birthday party. Their 7-month-old daughter was found wailing in the back seat.

Jorge Alberto Salcido, the husband of a Mexican employee of the consulate, also was killed by gunmen after leaving the same event in a separate vehicle.

Lesley Enriquez's Vehicle - On Site Investigation

Chavez told police that gunmen opened fire on Salcido because the two cars were the same color and the hit men did not know which one Enriquez was in, Pequeno said.

Investigators also have looked at whether Redelfs may have been targeted because of his work at an El Paso County jail that holds several members of the Barrio Azteca, the gang believed to be responsible for the attacks. Pequeno said Chavez belongs to Barrio Azteca, which works for the Juarez cartel on both sides of the border.

In March, U.S. Federal, State and local law enforcement officers swept through El Paso, picking up suspected members of the gang in an effort to find new leads in the killings. A suspect detained in Mexico shortly after the shooting confessed to acting as a lookout as the Azteca gang supposedly hunted down Redelfs, but he was never charged and was released without explanation.

Officials also have speculated that both attacks could have been a case of mistaken identity.

Much of the violence stems from rival drug- and migrant-smuggling gangs vying for power, including a firefight Thursday that left 21 people dead and at least six others wounded about 12 miles (20 kilometers) from the Arizona border.

That shootings took place in a sparsely populated area near the border city of Nogales that is considered a prime corridor for migrant

Police Investigate Nogales Shooting

 and drug smuggling. Sonora state prosecutors said all those killed were gang members.

Gangs often fight for control of the routes they use to smuggle drugs and people across the border, and also abduct migrants from each other. The violence near the Arizona border is one reason given for a controversial law passed in April.

The turf war between the Juarez and Sinaloa cartels, meanwhile, has made Ciudad Juarez one of the deadliest cities in the world. More than 2,600 people were killed last year in the city of 1.3 million people.

Sinaloa Cartel Victims - Executed with hands tied behind their backs

Chavez, 41, served five years in a Louisiana prison on drug distribution charges, according to Mexico’s central intelligence database. He was detained in Mexico in 2008 by the Mexican army on drug trafficking allegations and released, only to be promoted within the Azteca gang, Federal Police said.

Chavez was arrested along with five suspected gang associates who are accused of carrying out killings or providing support. Six assault rifles, a sub-machine gun and ammunition were seized.

Aside from the killings related to the U.S. consulate, Mexican police say Chavez also confessed to participating in the Jan. 31 killing of 15 youths at a party that was mistaken as a gathering of drug-gang rivals. That massacre fueled outrage over innocents killed.

The State Department, meanwhile, announced new travel restrictions Friday for U.S. government employees working away from the border in Mexico and Central America. As of July 15, they and their families are barred from crossing anywhere along Texas’ border, north or south, because of safety concerns. The U.S. government continues to urge Americans to exercise extreme caution or defer unnecessary travel to certain parts of Mexico.

Read more: http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/n/a/2010/07/02/international/i074349D23.DTL#ixzz0sZWJ2Uy0

Mexican Drug Cartel Kidnaps, Tortures And Murders 7 Police / Cartel Ambushes Bus – 12 Officers Killed

Seven police officers have been dragged from their homes, tortured and murdered by a drug Cartel in northern Mexico. 


Mutilated Bodies of Cartel Victims

James Jordan, Sky News Online

The officers, aged between 30 and 48, were grabbed at dawn from their homes by armed men in the northern city of Monterrey.

Their tortured bodies were found hours later in an abandoned plot of land with a message from a criminal group.

All the victims were handcuffed and one had been decapitated.

The bloody killings came after more than 50 people were killed in an ambush on a Mexican federal police convoy and in a prison uprising.

In another incident, marines were caught up in a gunfight in Acapulco while on their way to search a property where suspicious activity had been reported. Two people were detained.

SEE: Mexican Drug Cartel Violence: Mexican Marines arrest presumed leader of Beltran Leyva Cartel – Sergio Villarreal Barragan taken into custody

Acapulco: Marines Under Fire

The ambush on the police convoy in the central coastal city of Zitacuaro left 12 police officers and at least 13 attackers dead.

More than 23,000 people have died in the drug violence, as thousands of troops and police have taken on the the heavily armed cartels

which control the mutlibillion dollar business.

The recent surge in violence prompted Mr Calderon to give a television address to the nation, calling the battle against the gangs a fight for the nation’s future.

Mr Calderon pledged to continue his battle against drug cartels because “it is a fight that, together, Mexicans will win”.

http://news.sky.com/skynews/Home/World-News/Mexico-Gang-Kidnaps-Tortures-And-Murders-Police-Officers-As-Drugs-War-Violence-Surges/Article/201006315650614 lpos=World_News_Article_Related_Content_Region_1&lid=ARTICLE_15650614_Mexico_Gang_Kidnaps%2C_Tortures_And_Murders_Police_Officers_As_Drugs_War_Violence_Surges

Cartel Bus Ambush Kills 12

The bus ambush and attack on the federal police officers occurred in the central coastal Mexican state of Michoacan, the National Ministry of Information said. The convoy had originated in the city of Hidalgo and was on its way to Mexico City.

Authorities said Tuesday they believe La Familia Michoacana drug cartel was behind the ambush, CNNMexico.com reported, quoting the nation’s head of the anti-drug division, Ramon Eduardo Pequeno Garcia.

The police officers wounded in the ambush were taken to hospitals in Mexico City and Morelia, another city in Michoacan state, the Information Ministry said. They were being protected under heavy guard.

The four-truck police convoy was attacked after the criminals blocked the road with a bus that had been set on fire, Notimex said.


U.S. Embassy Employees In Mexico Assassinated For Providing Travel Visas To Rival Drug Cartel

Mexico nabs gang leader in U.S. consulate killings

By Morgan Lee:  Associated Press

Police examine anbush siteMEXICO CITY — A drug gang leader says he ordered the killing of a U.S. consulate worker because she gave visas to a rival gang in the border city of Ciudad Juarez, federal police said Friday.

Jesus Ernesto Chavez, whose arrest was announced on Friday, leads a band of hit men for a street gang tied to the Juarez Cartel, said Ramon Pequeno, the head of anti-narcotics for the Federal Police.

Pequeno said Chavez ordered the March 13 attack that killed U.S. consulate employee Lesley Enriquez and her husband as they drove in the violent border city, and he said Chavez told police that Enriquez was targeted because she gave visas to a rival gang.

A U.S. Embassy official said there would no immediate comment on the allegation.

Enriquez, who was four months pregnant, and her husband, Arthur H. Redelfs, were killed when gunmen opened fire on their sport utility vehicle after they left a birthday party. Their 7-month-old daughter was found wailing in the back of the vehicle.

Jorge Alberto Salcido, the husband of a Mexican employee of the consulate, also was killed by gunmen after leaving the same event in a separate vehicle.

Chavez told police that gunmen opened fire on Salcido because the two cars were the same color and the hit men didn’t know which one Enriquez was in, Pequeno said.

Pequeno said Chavez belongs to Barrio Azteca, a gang that works for the Juarez cartel on both sides of the border.

The Juarez cartel’s turf war against the Sinaloa cartel has made Ciudad Juarez one of the deadliest cities in the world. More than 2,600

13 Cartel Victims - Executed with hands tied behind their backs. San Ignacio, Sinaloa

 people were killed last year in the city of 1.3 million people across the border from El Paso, Texas.


For additional information on Barrio Azteca see: https://mcauleysworld.wordpress.com/2010/06/29/the-arizona-law-mexican-drug-cartels-threaten-mexican-democracy-leading-politician-assassinated-obamas-inaction-threatens-american-security/

… El Paso’s Barrio Azteca gang are some of the most dangerous in the country ….  They are associated or members of that MS-13 … “They are very active they have over 2,000 members according to the El Paso police department,” … Azteca’s are attracted to El Paso because of the accessibility to drugs from Mexico, and he said members tend to be active drug dealers… Federal authorities point to the Mexican drug cartels who are ultimately responsible for border violence by having cemented ties to  street and prison gangs like Barrio Azteca on the U.S. side. Azteca and other U.S. gangs retail drugs that they get from Mexican cartels and Mexican gangs. Mexican gangs run their own distribution networks in the United States, and they produce most of the methamphetamine used north of the border… continued … https://mcauleysworld.wordpress.com/2010/06/29/the-arizona-law-mexican-drug-cartels-threaten-mexican-democracy-leading-politician-assassinated-obamas-inaction-threatens-american-security/

The Funeral: Mourning Rodolfo Torre, candidate for Governor of Tamaulipas, Mexico

Mourners at Funeral of Rodolfo Torre

Supporters of the candidate for Governor of Tamaulipas state for the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI), Rodolfo Torre, mourn next to his coffin during his funeral at the Polyforum in Ciudad Victoria, Tamaulipas state, Mexico, on Tuesday. Torre was killed along with five other people when coming back from a closing rally of his campaign. Elections for Governor will take place next July 4 in Tamaulipas.

Gunmen ambushed Rodolfo Torre’s campaign caravan Monday less than a week before he was expected to win the governor’s race in Tamaulipas, a state torn by a turf battle between two rival drug cartels. Four other people were killed: three of the candidate’s bodyguards and a state lawmaker.

President Felipe Calderon called the attack an attempt by drug gangs to sway Sunday’s elections for governors and mayors in 12 states. He warned that cartels want “to interfere in the decisions of citizens and in electoral processes.”

“Organized crime will never meet its objectives. It will not succeed in shaking our faith in democracy or undermine our confidence in the future of Mexico,” Calderon said in a televised speech.

But the attack emptied streets in Ciudad Victoria, the Tamaulipas state capital where Torre was killed. Heavily armed federal and state police patrolled in caravans. Some parents rushed to pick up their children from schools.

“I am not going to vote because there is a lot of fear. The tension is very strong,” said Maria Pilar Villegas, a convenience store clerk who said she was on the phone with her sister when she saw the news of the assassination on television. “I got chills when I saw the TV.”

Luis Donaldo Colosio

Torre, of the Institutional Revolutionary Party, or PRI, is the first gubernatorial candidate assassinated in Mexico in recent memory. He is the highest-ranking candidate killed since Luis Donaldo Colosio, also for the PRI, was gunned down while running for president in 1994. 

Torre, a doctor who served as the state’s health secretary, had mostly campaigned on fighting poverty, even as turf wars escalated following a split between the Gulf cartel and the Zetas gang of hit men. Local politicians often avoid discussing drug trafficking, insisting it is the federal government’s responsibility to fight organized crime.

But on Sunday before his assassination, Torre announced that security would be a priority in his government. The next day, armed men ambushed his campaign caravan, killing him and four others, including his assistant and a state legislator 

Torre’s death was the biggest setback yet for the elections. Corruption scandals, threats and attacks

Two woman mourn

on politicians have raised fears for months that Mexico’s powerful drug cartels are buying off candidates they support and intimidating those they oppose.

Calderon’s government did not say which gang was suspected in Torre’s assassination or why he would be targeted.

Tamaulipas, which borders Texas, has become a battleground between the Gulf cartel and its former ally, the Zetas gang of hit men.

Drug cartels operate in many countries throughout Latin America, including Colombia, Brazil, Central America, Trinidad and Tobago, Jamaica, Mexico, Afghanistan and South Asia. Some cartels are even establishing themselves in U.S. cities like New York, Phoenix, Houston, Atlanta, Los Angeles and San Diego.
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