International Law

Calif. Prosecutors Seek State Bar Help to Fight Mexican Drug War Spilling into US


A raging drug war in Mexico isn’t just hurting people there—including police officers, judges and lawyers affected by the ongoing violence.

It’s also spilling over into the United States, as the same drug gangs responsible for killings, kidnappings and other related crime there travel across the border to ply their illegal trade here, two prosecutors write in the Daily Journal (sub. req.).

Among the gangs being dealt with by law enforcement officials in both countries are MS-13 and the 18th Street gang, the article states.

Participants at a recent International Prosecutors Forum in Mexico City said they would welcome additional help from the U.S. to combat the violence. And their legal brethen here would be well-advised to offer it, suggests the article written by Rocky Delgadillo, who is the Los Angeles city attorney, and Bruce Riordan, a former federal prosecutor who directs anti-gang operations for the city attorney’s office.

“The Mexican criminal justice system is very different from ours, but the leaders of the Mexican government and legal community are currently studying the American system in an attempt to adapt their system to the crisis,” they write. “We urge the leaders of the California Bar and California judiciary to assist our neighbor in this effort.”

Possible confrontations between the Mexican Gulf Cartel and U.S. law enforcement are also a growing concern in South Texas, the Associated Press reports today, relying on an FBI report obtained by the McAllen Monitor.

Following a crackdown on drug smuggling in Texas, the leader of the cartel’s enforcement group has positioned reinforcements across the river from McAllen, the FBI report states. “These replacements are believed to be armed with assault rifles, bulletproof vests and grenades and are occupying safe houses throughout the McAllen area.”

Updated at 5:50 p.m. to include information from Associated Press article.

Related coverage:

ABAJournal.com: “Spying in Mexican AG’s Office Could Be Linked to US DEA”

ABAJournal.com: “35 Indicted, $9.5M Seized in Alleged Calif.-Mexico ‘Operation Money Train’ “

ABAJournal.com: “‘Raging Drug War’ in Mexico Worsens”

ABAJournal.com: “‘Project Reckoning’ Drug Bust Tally: 500 Arrests, 16 Tons of Coke and $60M”

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