Monday, August 6, 2018
Crime-Related Executions Hit Record High
By Parker Asmann (InSight Crime)
Executions linked to organized
crime in Mexico have risen to record levels during the first six months of 2018, according to a new report, underscoring how
shifting criminal dynamics continue to negatively impact levels of violence in the country.
A record 11,241 executions linked to organized crime groups
in Mexico were recorded during the first six months of 2018, an average of more than 60 per day and a 28 percent increase
from the same period last year, according to a new report from the watchdog agency Semáforo Delictivo and Lantia Consultores, a non-profit that tracks killings connected to
The 310 percent increase in homicides in the Pacific state of Nayarit compared to the same time period last year was
the highest in Mexico. This was followed by a 134 percent increase in the Caribbean state of Quintana Roo and a 130 percent
increase in the central state of Guanajuato.On the other hand, northwestern Baja California Sur state, which was hit by a wave of violence in 2017, recorded a 52 percent decrease in homicides throughout the first half of 2018 compared to last year. The Pacific
state of Sinaloa, home to the notorious Sinaloa Cartel, saw the next biggest decrease with a 28 percent reduction in homicides.
Lantia Consultores used
their own methodology by collecting reports and using media coverage to gather the data on organized crime-related executions. They counted
the total number of victims of organized crime as opposed to how Mexico’s National Public Security System (Sistema
Nacional de Seguridad Pública – SNSP) counts just the total number of homicide cases.
The bloody start to 2018 comes after Mexico set record
highs for homicides and organized crime-related homicides in 2017.
InSight Crime Analysis
Mexico’s criminal landscape has grown increasingly fragmented in recent years,
and the shakeup of the country’s underworld has had a severe impact on levels of violence.
The significant increase in homicides in Nayarit and Guanajuato
states, which both border Jalisco state, the stronghold of the Jalisco Cartel New Generation (Cartel Jalisco Nueva Generación
– CJNG), is likely linked to a struggle for criminal control.
As InSight Crime recently reported, a splinter group of the CJNG known as the Nueva Plaza is battling the CJNG in and around the Jalisco capital of Guadalajara
for control over criminal economies. At the moment, the Nueva Plaza has won control over the western part of the city while
the group continues to battle the CJNG for control over several towns to the southeast of the city.
“There is an ongoing
conflict between the CJNG, Nueva Plaza and components of the Sinaloa Cartel in that area,” Mike Vigil, the former Chief
of International Operations at the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), told InSight Crime.
See also: Mexico News and Profiles
the significant decrease in homicides in Baja California Sur and Sinaloa suggests that criminal dynamics may have started
to settle in other parts of the country.
According to Vigil, the Tijuana Cartel has stabilized its control over the Tijuana drug trafficking
corridor along the US-Mexico border, which could explain the drop-in homicides starting this year.
But Vigil told InSight
Crime this “doesn’t mean that in the future some of the other cartels won’t move into the area, which could
immediately act as a catalyst for more wholesale violence.”
“They can go from passive to volatile in a matter of minutes,”
the report found that homicides in neighboring Baja California rose more than 25 percent during the first half of 2018.
This commentary was first
published in InSight Crime and reposted per a Creative Commons authorization. InSight Crime's objective is to increase
the level of research, analysis and investigation on organized crime in Latin America and the Caribbean. Parker
Asmann graduated from DePaul University in Chicago with degrees in Journalism and Spanish, and a minor in Latin American studies.
He was a freelance reporter for various publications before joining InSight Crime in June 2017.