Mexican authorities have disarmed and suspended Acapulco’s entire municipal police force amidst a massive murder and corruption investigation.
Heavily armed soldiers and marines staged a daylight raid on the resort city’s police headquarters yesterday, arresting two senior police commanders on homicide charges and seizing the guns, bulletproof vests and radios of the rest of the force.
The Pacific coast city of 800,000, once a playground for foreign tourists, is now known as Mexico’s murder capital. The local murder rate is 103 homicides per 100,000 residents, one of the highest in the world.
Most of the killings are connected to the drug trade, with up to 50 gangs currently battling for supremacy.
Drug violence in Mexico has left more than 200,000 dead since 2006. Another 35,000 people have simply disappeared.
Last year, Mexico recorded 31,174 murders, a 27 per cent increase from 2016, and the country’s murder rate is now at its highest point since 1990. To date, 2018 is proving even more deadly, with almost 19,000 killings over the first eight months of the year, a 20 per cent jump from 2017.
Horrors have become commonplace.
This week, authorities in the Gulf state of Veracruz issued photos of clothing items found in a mass grave, including an infant’s pants, toddler’s sandals, and tiny T-shirts decorated with Pokemon and Tinkerbell. So far at least 174 skulls have been discovered in the massive pit and the excavation continues.
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