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maryannborman

Loredo Crossing Shakedown Problem

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I appreciate that you have taken my post in good faith and undertaken some further investigation. The incident occurred at 5:00am on the morning of Thurday, September 30th. It was pitch dark at that time, and the group who stopped them had large lanterns.....

This is part of the problem, don't drive at night in Mexico. In 30 yrs of driving in Mexico on the autopista, I have had no problems, but on the libramiento, it is more likely that something could go wrong. I would not like to be driving around Detroit at night either. There's a reason you see cameras at the toll booths on the autopistas and that is to discourage the bad guys.

I would suggest that about 90% of your personal safety concerns in Mexico are dependent upon the informed and responsible choices you make. Night driving on the libra is not a good choice, just my opinion.

No different NOB; However, NOB the bad guys have a lot more guns to twist the odds in their favor.

There is good, bad, and ugly in every country. Learning how to navigate thru it all can be a challenge.

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No different NOB; However, NOB the bad guys have a lot more guns to twist the odds in their favor.

nope, NOB the good guys, which includes police officers, the army, and ordinary citizens have more guns than the bad guys

thats why I have never worried about driving night or day on a US highway and thinking, "hey, maybe this checkpoint is manned by Zetas"

please give us cites for incidents NOB where criminals take over major highways pretending to be the army

as a citizen in most US states I am allowed to carry arms and defend myself, here in Mexico, not so much

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as a citizen in most US states I am allowed to carry arms and defend myself, here in Mexico, not so much

Bet all the gun totting law-abiding US patriots would just pull their 45 pistolas and blow them dozen Zetas with AK47s away wouldn't they...

Actually,

I dont really think they'd defend themselves, I think they'd be cleanin' their shorts - unless they actually pulled a weapon - then, they'd be really dead

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I don't know the stats for Mexico but a reported 35,000 attempted/successful carjackings occur in the US every year despite their "superior" police and military forces.

There are no safe places in the world anymore, just our personal illusions of safety. I've lived full time on both sides of the border, neither country is "safer" than the other if you insist on ignoring common sense rules that are applicable in that country.

Anyway off topic I suppose, I just think anyone driving to Mexico for the first time should adhere to the don't drive at night rule.

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I don't know the stats for Mexico but a reported 35,000 attempted/successful carjackings occur in the US every year despite their "superior" police and military forces.

again, please show us some cites for USA residents afraid to drive night or day on major US highways

there is a diference between carjackings and wondering if the army or police are imposters

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again, please show us some cites for USA residents afraid to drive night or day on major US highways

there is a diference between carjackings and wondering if the army or police are imposters

There have been numerous reports of crimes in the states by those who have posed as police. Google "crimes reported in US by police imposters", 148,000 hits in .36 seconds. Is that enough?

Cities where the residents are afraid to drive at night? Ever driven in Algiers across from New Orleans after dark, how about Detroit, Baltimore (murder rate 39/100,000) downtown Houston's fifth ward?

Comparing crime in Mexico to crime in any other country has been beaten to death on this webboard. There is crime everywhere in the world. We all just have different perceptions of how it affects us.

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There have been numerous reports of crimes in the states by those who have posed as police. Google "crimes reported in US by police imposters", 148,000 hits in .36 seconds. Is that enough?

Cities where the residents are afraid to drive at night? Ever driven in Algiers across from New Orleans after dark, how about Detroit, Baltimore (murder rate 39/100,000) downtown Houston's fifth ward?

Comparing crime in Mexico to crime in any other country has been beaten to death on this webboard. There is crime everywhere in the world. We all just have different perceptions of how it affects us.

What the OP was describing are risks directly related to narco violence and the cartel wars, not crime in general. Lumping the two together is the proverbial mixing of apples and oranges. There is crime everywhere. Nothing remotely similar to cartel violence exists in New Orleans, Baltimore, Detroit or Houston. One can easily avoid Algiers, the Fifth Ward or inner city Detroit/Baltimore and eliminate or greatly reduce the possibility of being a crime victim. It is not quite that easy in some parts of Mexico where the cartels operate openly.

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What the OP was describing are risks directly related to narco violence and the cartel wars, not crime in general. Lumping the two together is the proverbial mixing of apples and oranges. There is crime everywhere. Nothing remotely similar to cartel violence exists in New Orleans, Baltimore, Detroit or Houston. One can easily avoid Algiers, the Fifth Ward or inner city Detroit/Baltimore and eliminate or greatly reduce the possibility of being a crime victim. It is not quite that easy in some parts of Mexico where the cartels operate openly.

I don't see much difference between the drug cartel operations in Mexico or the drug gangs that run the inner cities in the states. In New Orleans for example, the police escort the meter readers for elec and water into the housing projects,

Drug related violence in some of those areas is very similar to what you would find in some parts of Mexico today. A traveler can avoid inner city violence by driving around it, but those that live there cannot. If your risk factor is great about traveling the Monterrey/Laredo autopista, then yes by all means, you should fly. A wise choice for some. I too struggle with my choices to drive around Monterrey/Laredo, not exactly Mexico's shining moment.

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The Zetas recruit military and police officials, offer them better pay, food and working conditions. Remember the recruitment banners in laredo in 2008, strung across reforma ave? some said that it was just an attempt to demoralize the military but even if that is soo it does not change the fact that many memres of the Zetas are ex-military and police. Where do you think they get the uniformes?

A lot of people believe that clandistine military soldiers cooperate with the zetas, or at least look the other way and stay out of their path.

I don´t think anyone would make this up. This situation is getting worse and we need to be reminded of that. Just because nothing has happened to you or myself does not mean that it does not happen.

I have been wondering , what with all of the drug activity, drive by shootings, an assasination in the middle of Chapala, headless corpses and a high concentration of tourists...why is there not a military post here? There used to be one in Ixtlauacan for years, although I thought it was on the wrong side of the road.....and that was back when nothing ever happened around here.

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The Zetas recruit military and police officials, offer them better pay, food and working conditions. Remember the recruitment banners in laredo in 2008, strung across reforma ave? some said that it was just an attempt to demoralize the military but even if that is soo it does not change the fact that many memres of the Zetas are ex-military and police. Where do you think they get the uniformes?

A lot of people believe that clandistine military soldiers cooperate with the zetas, or at least look the other way and stay out of their path.

I don´t think anyone would make this up. This situation is getting worse and we need to be reminded of that. Just because nothing has happened to you or myself does not mean that it does not happen.

I agree with the bolded statement. But my original doubts were based partly on the rather vague description about where the incident occurred and moreso on my personal experience of driving these roads on a daily and weekly basis. I also try to stay as well informed as I can through various sources about the situation in and around my city and the area and events like this usually become known.

Your information about the Zetas is a little dated. Alot has changed since 2008. Most of the newer, rank and file members are not ex-military or police. They are mostly 20-something, un/underemployed thugs who are no match for the specially trained military units who are hunting them down. The 2008 banner with the Maruchan comment was taunting not to be taken literally. This link shows the reality in Nuevo Laredo for Zeta foot soldiers(VIEWER CAUTION ADVISED) and it is not as romantic a picture as the 2008 banner depicted.

Balacera en Nuevo Laredo

Whether the situation is getting better or worse depends the part of the country you are talking about. This thread is about Nuevo Laredo and I would say the situation is relatively stable and certainly has not gotten worse. We have been spared the inter-cartel fighting between the Zetas and Gulf that has plagued Reynosa, Tampico and the cities in central Tamaulipas and La Ribereña. Here the military is aggressively tracking down the Zetas which has them keeping a low profile. That is another reason why I was surprised by the OP's account of the incident.

I think this area is safe enough to drive through--this account notwithstanding--and certainly is safe if you don't drive at night, which is not advisable in any event.

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"" Most of the newer, rank and file members are not ex-military or police. They are mostly 20-something, un/underemployed thugs who are no match for the specially trained military units who are hunting...""

These are exactly the type of "narcos" that were caught in Mazamitla a few months ago, about a dozen from Guanajuato, 16-20 yr olds with a pile of money, AK-47's, grenades, and meth in their hands. A lot has changed in the last 4 years.

There was one weekend of narco crime related activity in the Lakeside area some months ago, but not much since. Overall to keep it in perspective you have to remind yourself that the vast majority of the violence has been contained to the narcos or the police and not targeted at the expat community.

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"" Most of the newer, rank and file members are not ex-military or police. They are mostly 20-something, un/underemployed thugs who are no match for the specially trained military units who are hunting...""

These are exactly the type of "narcos" that were caught in Mazamitla a few months ago, about a dozen from Guanajuato, 16-20 yr olds . . . . Overall to keep it in perspective you have to remind yourself that the vast majority of the violence has been contained to the narcos or the police and not targeted at the expat community.

I seriouly doubt that narcos will ever target the ex-pat community specifically, but the increasing risk comes from the public nature of the violence. The youth and inexperience of the foot soldiers who replace older, experienced members as they are killed and captured present a danger because they lack the discipline and restraint and are more likely to just open fire indiscriminately. There have been two incidents in Monterrey during the last week--a grenade tossed in a public plaza and an attempted hit on a main street in the crowded downtown shopping district. The photo link I provided of the July balacera demonstrates the potential danger to innocent civilians when these guys get engaged in the public.

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