Things That Matter

This Mexican City Has So Many Unclaimed Bodies That It’s Building A Massive Cemetery To Bury The Dead

Although Mexico’s Sinaloa state has claimed that homicides were down 61% over the last 10 years, it’s a different story across much of Mexico. In fact, the country saw its most violent year in history (since the 1918 Mexican Revolution).

In some states, violence is so brutal and widespread that authorities struggle to keep up with investigations or simply can’t identify the deceased’s remains. This has led to a sporadic patchwork of unmarked grave sites across the country. So one state is deciding to construct a mega-cemetery for unidentified, unclaimed bodies.

The border city of Ciudad Juárez will build a massive cemetery for the thousands of unidentified and unclaimed bodies.

The Chihuahua state government announced that they will build a 50,000-square-meter (that’s more than 12 acres) mega-cemetery in Ciudad Juárez for the burial of unidentified and unclaimed bodies.

Ciudad Juárez lays just across the border from El Paso, Texas and is one of the most violent cities in Mexico. In fact, 58% of the entire state of Chihuahua’s murders occur in the city of 1.5 million people. In 2016, the state was estimated to have had more than 17,000 homicide victims.

In the state-operated mega-cemetery, there will be “complete control” both in the burial and exhumation of bodies.

Chihuahua Attorney General César Augusto Peniche said in an interview that the cemetery is needed because unidentified and unclaimed bodies are currently buried in regular cemeteries where the corpses of crime victims are sometimes not managed as they should be.

“We intend to comply with the highest standards,” Peniche said, adding that the International Red Cross participated in the process to design the new cemetery. Adding: “We intend to have a dignified space, to manage remains professionally and [to have] strict control on the entry, location and removal [of bodies].”

The State Forensic Interment Center will be located on the state government-owned San Isidro-Zaragoza reserve in the northern border city and include facilities capable of storing up to 800 bodies prior to burial.

Construction of the cemetery and facilities that will include an ossuary, or bone room, and six refrigerated morgue chambers will cost 50 million pesos (US $2.65 million).

Thousands of murders are never even investigated let alone solved.

According to Insight Crime, a detective in Nuevo León state said that the cases “aren’t filed or closed, but there is also no follow-up police work, just the report with the crime scene information and the victim’s identification … and that’s how they stay.”

It is no surprise, then, that solving a homicide case in Mexico is the exception to the rule. In 27 states, including Nuevo León, nine in 10 crimes go unpunished.

In 27 of Mexico’s 32 states, the rate of cases without convictions tops 90 percent. Among the more successful states, Jalisco edges out with 88.9 percent of its cases unsolved, Mexico City is at 76.5 percent, and Yucatán is at 56.6 percent unsolved.

This means that Mexico has a rate of five convictions for every 100 homicide victims, whereas the Americas as a whole have an average rate of 24 per 100 victims. The conviction rate in Asia is 48, and in Europe 81, according to info from the United Nations.

The cemetery, officials say, is needed to keep up with the ever-growing need for burial space for crime victims.

Between October 2016, the month Governor Javier Corral took office, and October 2019, state authorities buried 818 unidentified bodies and 207 corpses of people whose identities were established but went unclaimed nevertheless.

Of the former number, 468 bodies – or 57% of the total – were killed in Juárez.

Homicides in the border city located across the Rio Grande from El Paso, Texas, increased 61% from 771 in 2017 to 1,245 in 2018 before rising an additional 12.6% last year even before data for December murders was included.

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It’s No Surprise El Chapo’s Wife Is In Jail, Her TikTok Was A Look Inside #CartelLife

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It’s No Surprise El Chapo’s Wife Is In Jail, Her TikTok Was A Look Inside #CartelLife

Drew Angerer/Getty Images

The recent arrest of Emma Coronel Aispuro – the wife of drug lord Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzman – follows a telenovela-style life that straddled hyper-violent Mexican cartels, fame and motherhood. And it’s a life that Coronel shared with her thousands of followers on social media platforms like TikTok.

The former beauty queen used social media to give her fans a peek into the luxurious life she lived and helped birth the large #CartelLife movement that is booming on apps like TikTok.

Parties, TikTok and Reality Shows: the luxuries of Emma Coronel.

Although Emma Coronel Aispuro is now in the news for her recent arrest in the U.S., she was all about flaunting her larger than life and luxurious lifestyle. She has long stood out for sharing her life of luxury on social media, and many of her videos went viral for her dancing and singing.

Since being arrested and brought up on charges related to drug trafficking, Coronel now faces a minimum sentence of 10 years behind bars and even life imprisonment, in addition to an eventual $10 million fine, should she be found guilty of the charges.

But before being placed in a maximum security prison, Coronel was a social media influencer that helped bring the world into the #CartelLife.

Coronel’s social media life was a window into the world of Mexican drug cartels.

In 2018, Coronel decorated her home to mimic that of everyone’s beloved Barbie, in order to celebrate the birthday of her daughters. At the meeting there were even rides, inflatables and an incredible spread of all kinds.

Then, on her own birthday, images of her celebration went viral where she posed with some friends near a pool, as well as a table decorated as white candles.

In 2019, Coronel tried to launch her own clothing brand, inspired by her husband’s nickname. The company “El Chapo Guzmán JGL LLC”, would focus on wallets, sweatshirts, blouses and pants, among other items, but it failed to take off.

She even appeared on a VH1 show to share just how “normal” she was.

Emma Coronel has also participated in the reality show “Cartel Crew”, produced by the VH1 channel, where she spoke about the disadvantages of being the wife of a drug trafficker, since she says that she is judged by the people who don’t truly know her.

“It is very unfortunate that they judge us without knowing us. It’s hard because sometimes you want to do what you see everyone around you doing […] We are normal,” she said during her run on the show.

The son of El Chapo has also turned to TikTok to flaunt his millionaire lifestyle.

Supuestos lujos del hijo de "El Chapo", Jesús Alfredo Guzmán.

El Chapo’s wife isn’t the only one who has taken to social media to share her luxurious life. Jesus Alfredo Guzman, one of the drug lord’s sons, – who is already on US’s Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA)’s most-wanted fugitive list – has also created a TikTok account and quickly amassed more than 15,000 followers.

So far, he’s only shared six videos but they reveal his luxurious and extravagant mansion, which includes an indoor movie theatre and a swimming pool decorated with pillars and fountains.

Although it cannot be confirmed that it is officially the account of Jesús Alfredo, the profile appears to indicate that it could be an authentic. He also spares no details on his fleet of supercars, including three Rolls-Royces, an Audi R8, a white Bentley, and an azure blue Lamborghini.

The clips are all set to narcocorridos, a controversial ballad-style music with lyrics that speak approvingly of illegal activities, mainly drug trafficking.

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An Alleged Rapist Is Running For Governor In Mexico And Still Has The Support Of President AMLO

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An Alleged Rapist Is Running For Governor In Mexico And Still Has The Support Of President AMLO

Guillermo Gutierrez/NurPhoto via Getty Images

For years, Mexicans have been taking to the streets to denounce violence against women and to demand accountability from their leaders. However, much of that messaging doesn’t seem to have reached the very top as President Andres Manuel López Obrador (AMLO) continues to support a candidate for governor facing multiple allegations of sexual assault.

A candidate for governor faces multiple sexual assault allegations and still enjoys widespread support.

Félix Salgado Macedonio, a federal senator (currently on leave) is accused of sexually assaulting five women and yet is still in the running for governor of Guerrero.

Despite the accusations he faces, 64-year-old Salgado, has maintained the support of President AMLO, who has claimed that the allegations are politically motivated, and other high-ranking party officials including national party president Mario Delgado. He was considered the frontrunner in the election for governor.

AMLO came to the candidates defense, calling on people to stop politicking and avoid “media lynchings” and asserting that people should trust the party process that was used to select Salgado as candidate.

“We have to have confidence in the people, it’s the people who decide. If polls are taken and and the people say ‘I agree with this colleague [being candidate],’ I think that must be respected. Politics is a matter for everyone, not just the elites,” López Obrador said.

The MORENA party has committed to reselecting its candidate for governor but Salgado is still in the running.

Officials from the MORENA party announced that they would conduct a new selection process to find a contender for the June 6 election. The party’s honesty and justice commission said its members had voted unanimously to order a repeat of the selection process.

While the honesty and justice commission has ordered a new candidate selection process, Salgado was not precluded from participating in it. He indicated in a social media post on Friday night that he planned to seek the party’s backing for a second time.

“Cheer up colleagues! There is [still fight in the] bull,” Salgado wrote on Facebook.

Activists continue to fight back against his candidacy and the president’s support for an alleged rapist.

Women have protested in Mexico City and Guerrero state capital Chilpancingo and the hashtag #NingúnVioladorSeráGobernador (No Rapist Will be Governor) has been used countless times on Twitter.

Yolitzin Jaimes, a member of the feminist collective Las Revueltas, said the withdrawal of Salgado’s candidacy is a positive first step but urged the authorities to continue investigating the rape allegations.

“… He has to go to jail, … he mustn’t return to the Senate and he mustn’t be nominated [for governor] by any political party because … it’s very probable that he’s seeking to go to the Labor Party [a Morena ally],” she said.

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