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Viewing cable 09MONTERREY411, OUTGOING MAYORS SPEAK ON THREATS FROM ORGANIZED CRIME;

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Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
09MONTERREY411 2009-10-30 18:06 2011-02-10 12:12 CONFIDENTIAL Consulate Monterrey
Appears in these articles:
http://www.jornada.unam.mx/2011/02/10/index.php?section=politica&article=006n1pol
VZCZCXRO5071
PP RUEHCD RUEHGD RUEHHO RUEHNG RUEHNL RUEHRD RUEHRS RUEHTM
DE RUEHMC #0411/01 3031829
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
P 301829Z OCT 09
FM AMCONSUL MONTERREY
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 4062
INFO RUEHME/AMEMBASSY MEXICO PRIORITY 5142
RUEHXC/ALL US CONSULATES IN MEXICO COLLECTIVE
RHMFISS/DEPT OF JUSTICE WASHINGTON DC
RUEFHLC/DEPT OF HOMELAND SECURITY WASHINGTON DC
RHMFISS/FBI WASHINGTON DC
RUEABND/DEA HQ WASHDC
RHMFISS/HQ USNORTHCOM
RUEHMC/AMCONSUL MONTERREY 9680
232351
2009-10-30 18:29:00
09MONTERREY411
Consulate Monterrey
CONFIDENTIAL

VZCZCXRO5071
PP RUEHCD RUEHGD RUEHHO RUEHNG RUEHNL RUEHRD RUEHRS RUEHTM
DE RUEHMC #0411/01 3031829
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
P 301829Z OCT 09
FM AMCONSUL MONTERREY
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 4062
INFO RUEHME/AMEMBASSY MEXICO PRIORITY 5142
RUEHXC/ALL US CONSULATES IN MEXICO COLLECTIVE
RHMFISS/DEPT OF JUSTICE WASHINGTON DC
RUEFHLC/DEPT OF HOMELAND SECURITY WASHINGTON DC
RHMFISS/FBI WASHINGTON DC
RUEABND/DEA HQ WASHDC
RHMFISS/HQ USNORTHCOM
RUEHMC/AMCONSUL MONTERREY 9680

C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 03 MONTERREY 000411 
 
SIPDIS 
 
E.O. 12958: DECL:  10/30/2019 
TAGS: KCRM KCOR ASEC SNAR PHUM PGOV MX
SUBJECT: OUTGOING MAYORS SPEAK ON THREATS FROM ORGANIZED CRIME; 
LOCAL CONSULTANT CALLS FOR TARGETED ACTION AGAINST COMMON CRIME 
 
MONTERREY 00000411  001.2 OF 003 
 
 
CLASSIFIED BY: Bruce Williamson, Consul General. 
REASON: 1.4 (b), (d) 
1.  (C) Summary:  During separate conversations with Consul 
General, two outgoing Mayors briefed us on threats they had 
received from narcotraffickers during their tenure.  The worst 
instance involved armed sicarios who stormed into one mayor's 
city hall office and demanded that he stop resisting their 
dictates.  Meanwhile, a Monterrey-based security consultant told 
PolOffs on October 23 that he was frustrated by the state of 
Nuevo Leon's delay in adopting a security proposal that had 
garnered positive results in Sonora.  His approach involves 
public release of common crime statistics and significant 
community involvement.  He criticized efforts by new State 
Secretary of Public Security (SSP) Carlos Jauregui Hintze to 
weed out police corruption before tackling escalating crime 
rates and called for state authorities to expand the release of 
crime statistics.  End Summary. 
 
Outgoing Mayors Depart the Pressure-cooker 
------------------------------------------ 
2. (C)  During the past few weeks, Consul General spoke with the 
mayors of four Monterrey region municipalities, all of whom 
expressed relief that their terms were ending October 31 given 
the pressure they were under from organized crime.  Rafael Paz, 
the Mayor of Santiago, a suburban city south of Monterrey, 
painted the clearest picture of the situation he had faced.  He 
stated that during his three year term he: 
 
---   Had been threatened by narco-traffickers in the presence 
of the written and broadcast press; 
---   Had been confronted by an armed group of narco-gunmen 
which burst into his city hall office demanding that he stop 
resisting their demands. (Per the Mayor, he was told "they're 
200 of us and only 9 on you security detail;  who do you think 
is going to win?" 
---  Had the military raid a kidnapper's safe house several 
doors away from his home; and 
---  Had received telephone threats from the Zetas threatening 
to kill him and take his decapitated head to his wheelchair 
bound spouse. 
 
3. (C)  Paz recognized that his police force had been thoroughly 
penetrated by the narco-traffickers, pointing out that his 
municipal Secretary for Public Security had been detained by 
military and state authorities and had subsequently confessed. 
However, he felt that the narco-traffickers focus upon him was 
because the municipality had begun to sell land tracts and an 
unexpected rush of potential buyers, with pockets full of cash, 
wanted to buy the plots.  Paz had refused some offers (in one 
case, an interested buyer sought to pay 25 percent in cash for a 
95 million peso property) due to his suspicions of money 
laundering. 
 
4.  (C)  Outgoing San Pedro Mayor Fernando Margain Berlanga has 
also faced difficulties, although not as severe as Paz. 
Margain's challenge has been how to deal with several notorious 
night clubs which have become centers for drug-dealing.  While 
the city has mandated closing times, in practice the clubs don't 
close on time because the gangsters frequenting these 
establishments don't let that happen.  City efforts to shut down 
the clubs have faltered as club owners have gotten federal 
injunctions allowing them to continue doing business.  For his 
trouble, Margain has received implicit and explicit telephone 
threats. 
 
Security Program Lacks Traction 
------------------------------- 
 
5.  (C) In an October 23 meeting, security consultant Santiago 
Roel told PolOffs that the State of Nuevo Leon had yet to 
implement fully a crime prevention program similar to one in 
Sonora that had significantly reduced many common crimes  there. 
 Roel, a private consultant who designed the Sonora program, 
uses traffic lights, "semaforos," to indicate if a particular 
crime statistic has reached a target reduction percentage. 
(Note:  Green signals that crime rates are at or below a 
predetermined goal, red that crime rates have risen above 
historical averages, and yellow that the statistics are 
in-between.)  Roel's program also involves citizen and 
government participation in weekly meetings to discuss publicly 
released crime statistics, broken down by individual police 
districts.  Citizen groups hold police officials accountable for 
failing to reduce criminal activities in their districts. 
 
6.  (C) Based on his observations, organized crime has more 
heavily infiltrated the Nuevo Leon state police than Sonora's 
state police.  Even so, he believes the Nuevo Leon police 
situation is salvageable.  In the Monterrey metro area, Roel has 
 
MONTERREY 00000411  002.2 OF 003 
 
 
targeted the suburbs of San Pedro, San Nicolas and Guadalupe as 
initial candidates for his program.  He said he refused to work 
with the suburb of Apodaca after the city's police chief 
confided to him that he has no control over his police force. 
 
Semaforos Incorporated 
---------------------- 
 
7.  (C) Roel explained that public pressure had forced the 
previous Nuevo Leon state administration to accept the semaforo 
indicators, but the state had not incorporated any of the other 
elements of his program, which he judged key to success.  Former 
Nuevo Leon Governor Jose Natividad Gonzales Paras had opposed 
his program, he stated.  While new governor Rodrigo Medina de la 
Cruz has been supportive of his initiative, the state has yet to 
implement his full program.  Real reform, he noted, requires the 
support of the Citizen's Councils for Public Safety. 
State Approach Needs Reform 
--------------------------- 
 
8.  (C) Roel said he believed the state's new Secretary of 
Public Security (SSP), Carlos Jauregui Hintze, had good 
intentions, but was hampered by a corrupt police organization 
and opined that Jauregui has taken the wrong approach by 
initially attempting to weed out corruption instead of reduce 
crime.  He pointed out that the state police also have 
jurisdiction in part of Monterrey, which dilutes the 
organization's focus and efficacy.  The State police, he 
recommended, should return control of the city to the municipal 
police and focus 80 percent of their activities on prevention 
instead of reaction, as he said was currently the case. 
 
9.  (C) Criticizing the state's emphasis on a "top-down" control 
system, he explained that crime reduction requires an inverse 
approach - active participation by citizens and district police 
units to help calibrate law enforcement activities at a local 
level.  Unlike Sonora, Nuevo Leon has not broken down crime 
statistics to the degree where authorities can use them to 
identify crime rates at the community level.  Doing so would 
help assign responsibility for underperforming geographical 
areas and political subdivisions.  Roel opined that Jauregui was 
trying to emulate federal Secretary of Public Security Jorge 
Tello's method of exerting central control over police, instead 
of tailoring police actions to the needs of neighborhoods. 
 
The Way Forward 
--------------- 
 
10.  (C) Any program to address corruption must have support at 
the top and offer a mechanism for accountability, Roel said. 
His approach would identify specific geographical areas and, by 
association, those who were responsible for either good or bad 
outcomes.  Roel noted that, based on his Sonora experience, it 
becomes readily apparent where the problems are after analyzing 
the statistics at the neighborhood level. In Sonora, he said, 
the state focused on those 20 percent of the geographic areas 
where 80 percent of all crimes occurred. 
 
11.  (C) He pointed out that some crimes, such as car theft, are 
good indicators of corruption in a political subdivision, 
because this type of crime requires a sophisticated distribution 
network.  Collusion by public authorities is usually necessary 
for this type of crime to flourish.  Roel's strategy involves 
establishing accountability, publishing and widely disseminating 
crime statistics, publically announcing crime reduction goals 
and involving civil society groups along with local and federal 
police authorities in the process.  He would expand this to all 
11 political subdivisions in the Monterrey area.  Roel 
emphasized that authorities can quickly reduce crimes such as 
domestic violence, rape and sexual assault by focusing on 
problematic communities and releasing targeted statistics. 
Often, the statistics alone are enough to generate positive 
community action. 
 
 
Comment 
------- 
 
12.  (C) While Roel is clearly trying to sell his consultancy 
services, he does have an impressive track record in Sonora.  He 
notes that, while using his program, that state reduced rape by 
26 percent, domestic violence 34 percent, robbery 30 percent, 
house breaking 22 percent and assault 17 percent.  While he is 
eager to tout his success in Sonora, Roel is clearly nervous 
about associating his efforts with operations against organized 
crime, quickly declaring to PolOffs that his operations did not 
 
MONTERREY 00000411  003.2 OF 003 
 
 
target cartel activity.  Roel was highly critical of San Pedro 
municipal authorities, who he claimed, refused to heed his 
advice.  Indeed, Roel is a vocal member of the local San Pedro 
Citizen's Security Council and that body has engaged in a 
long-running debate as to whether to emphasize Roel's strategy 
or state Public Security Secretary Jauregui's current approach 
of trying to weed out corruption before addressing local crime 
rates.  Fellow Council member Mauricio Ramos Pons, a former 
security chief for the Monterrey-based multinational ALFA 
corporation, has argued just as persuasively that ensuring that 
local police forces are reliable, honest, and well-motivated and 
well-trained is the most important goal to be pursued.  Clearly 
both need to be done, but the difficult question that must be 
answered is which should have a higher priority. 
 
13.  (SBU) Roel, 52, is a forthright and self-assured 
interlocutor.  He began as a government consultant in the early 
1990s, but did not address security issues until the latter part 
of the decade.  In addition to his consulting business, he is a 
residential real estate developer, rents vacation properties, 
and runs a call-center software company.  Roel has a law degree 
from the Autonomous University of Nuevo Leon, an MBA from 
Monterrey TEC and has done post-graduate studies at Harvard's 
John F. Kennedy School. 
WILLIAMSONB