One of the godfathers of Mexican drug trafficking looks set to see out the last ten years of his sentence in the comfort of his own home after a federal court granted him permission to be held under house arrest earlier this month.
Ernesto Fonseca Carrillo, better known as “Don Neto,” was one of the most prominent leaders of the Guadalajara Cartel, Mexico’s first dominant drug-trafficking organization, throughout the 1970s and 1980s.
He was arrested in Puerto Vallarta in 1985 and sentenced to 40 years of imprisonment for his role in the abduction, torture and murder of DEA agent Enrique “Kiki” Camarena in Guadalajara earlier that year.
One of the most infamous crimes in the history of Mexico’s drug war, the killing provoked the largest manhunt in DEA history and soon led to the breakup of the Guadalajara Cartel…
Eight Mexican tourists were killed and six more injured when Egyptian armed forces bombed their tour group after mistaking them for terrorist insurgents on Sunday.
The governments of both countries confirmed the death toll on Tuesday. Four Egyptians were also killed and at least two more injured in the attack, which took place near the Bahariya oasis in Egypt’s Western Desert.
The attack occurred at around midday on Sunday, when the tourists, who were traveling in a convoy of four 4×4 vehicles, had stopped for a picnic. A witness said they came under fire from an Apache military helicopter, which then gunned down several victims as they tried to flee toward the top of a nearby sand dune…
Perched beside me on a plastic stool in Mexico City’s San Juan market, Francisco, a pensioner from the nearby town of Amatepec, is chowing down a plate of skunk meat.
“I’ve tried everything: armadillo, iguana, turtle, snake, you name it,” he tells me between mouthfuls, “but skunk is my favourite. I used to hunt them out in the mountains but it’s been years since I last ate it.”
So what does it taste like? “It tastes like skunk. You can’t compare it with anything else. Every meat has its own distinct flavor,” Francisco replies.
As appealing as skunk sounds, I’ve come here in search of two even more unusual meats: lion and crocodile…
Mexican authorities announced a nightmarish discovery in the western state of Jalisco last week, after raiding a property where gang members are thought to have dissolved their victims in barrels of acid.
The white-walled building, which has no street number and is covered in graffiti, is located at the end of an uneven dirt road in Santa Lucia, a small, underdeveloped town just northwest of Guadalajara, Mexico’s second biggest city.
Inside, investigators found five 450-liter tanks containing several human teeth, bones, plastic tape and traces of acid. The courtyard housed an empty swimming pool and a shallow grave that measured just over 50cm in diameter and contained human pelvis, femur and shoulder bones.
The top floor of the property was marked with bloodstains and the police also found a 9mm handgun, two knives, a shovel, gasoline, jewelry, clothing and 13 discarded cans and bottles…
I was kindly invited to appear on the Guadalajara Geopolitics Podcast this week to discuss the war on drugs, corruption, forced disappearances and journalism in Mexico. The podcast is presented by Hrvoje Moric, a humanities professor at the Guadalajara campus of the prestigious Tec de Monterrey university. You can listen via Soundcloud (above) or Youtube (below). Comments or questions are always welcome!