Teaching Comparative Government and Politics

Saturday, February 09, 2013

Grass roots law enforcement

Vigilantes and mobs have a deservedly bad reputation when it comes to law enforcement. And in Mexico, grass roots activism is notably rare. So there are high standards to meet if this local effort to end crime and violence is to be judged.

And we have to ask if there are political dimensions to the situation. Is there an ambitious local jefe involved in the movement as well as widespread frustration with mounting violence?

Mexico's vigilantes turn over 11 detained suspects
The Mexican farmers who took up arms against drug-gang violence and crime in the mountains of southern Mexico have turned over to authorities 11 of 53 people that the vigilantes have detained over the last month as suspected criminals.

Movement leader Bruno Placido says the 11 are the detainees accused by local residents of the most serious crimes… The vigilante movement sprang up in the Pacific coast state of Guerrero after a series of kidnappings in early January.
The Guerrero state government says Placido's group has agreed to turn over "the first 20" detainees, implying more will eventually follow. But Placido says a residents assembly in the township of Ayutla will determine the next step.

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