martes, 7 de mayo de 2013

TV journalist's sons among some 40 reported killed around Mexico

The two sons of a prominent financial journalist were among at least 40 killed in recent days around Mexico in presumed criminal incidents. Aged 20 and 21, the sons of David Páramo and his journalist wife Martha González Nicholson were shot at close range in the northern city of Chihuahua late on 4 May; one or two suspects were being questioned on 6 May, the Prosecutor-General of Mexico Jesús Murillo Karam told the press. A 26-year-old municipal official of Chihuahua was also killed on 5 or 6 May, his body being left in a car outside an army base there, Proceso reported. Other recent victims of crime included: seven whose bodies were found in a car early on 5 May in Ecatepec outside the capital and six executed or killed in gun fights in the north-eastern state of Tamaulipas. The latter included two criminals, a soldier and a policeman killed in a shootout and car chase outside Ciudad Victoria on 3 May, which was abandoned apparently for the criminals' resolve and firepower. The fleeing gangsters blew up lorries, blocked roads and fired assault weapons on police helicopters pursuing them, forcing them to turn back, Proceso reported. In the western state of Michoacán, police found five bodies in the district of Tingambato on 4 May, four of them with their hands cut off, while four women were murdered in the state capital Morelia on 3-4 May, Proceso reported. It separately counted 15 killings on 3-4 May in the north-western state of Sinaloa, including of six men abandoned by a road in the district of Ahome and of a policeman shot in his home in nearby Los Mochis. On 3 May, the army arrested six suspects thought to have killed three policemen in the district of Gran Morelos in Chihuahua on 27 April; they may have been among 20 gunmen said to have indulged in a shooting spree in Gran Morelos from a convoy of three cars. The six were detained near Gran Morelos, with firearms thought used in the incident, Proceso reported.

Army extends firearms ban in Bogotá, shown to cut murder rate

The army extended through May a firearms ban imposed in the Colombian capital Bogotá at the mayor's request, which officials believed had led to a comparative reduction in homicides, the Bogotá city government reported on 2 May. The ban apparently in force from 1 February to 29 April 2013 affected civilians and legal entities and was renewed from midnight on 2 May to midnight on 30 July 2013; the first such ban was imposed from 1 February to 29 April 2012, the office of the city's Government Secretary coordinating security affairs reported. Figures seemingly indicated a link between banning guns and fewer homicides: there were 166 reported homicides using guns in Bogotá from 1 February to 29 April 2013, down from 196 for the same period in 2013, and in contrast with 232 homicides cited for 2011, presumably for the same three-month period that year when there was no ban. The report stated that in the February to late-April period, police caught 40 suspects in flagrante delicto and 212 whom courts had ordered detained in relation with homicides. Hundreds of guns were also confiscated or handed in since 2012, the municipality stated. The ban did no apply to the armed forces, members of the diplomatic corps, registered security personnel and officials of the judiciary. Separately, police said they had detained 1,466 people in Bogotá so far in 2013 for stealing mobile telephones or related devices, RCN La Radio reported on 7 May. Police most recently detained eight suspected of selling stolen mobile devices in the districts of Fontibón and Kennedy in south-western Bogotá; in all 3,940 stolen devices were recovered this year, RCN radio reported.