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Mexican President Replaces AG Who Fought Drug Cartels

Posted Sep 8, 2009 6:34 AM CDT
By Debra Cassens Weiss

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Mexican President Felipe Calderon has replaced his attorney general who fought the drug cartels and replaced him with a little-known lawyer who has worked as a state and federal prosecutor.

Calderon accepted the resignation of Attorney General Eduardo Medina Mora without giving a reason for the change, Reuters reports. However Calderon said the drug crackdown would continue.

Arturo Chavez, a federal and state prosecutor in Chihuahua, was nominated to replace Medina Mora.

Medina Mora’s image was hurt when a top deputy was arrested and accused of taking bribes to pass on knowledge of drug cases, according to the Associated Press. Critics also pointed out that a crackdown by police and troops failed to stop drug violence that has killed more than 13,000 people.

Jose Luis Pineyro, a drug expert at Mexico's National Autonomous University, told AP that Medina Mora’s departure could signal an intention to change its drug-fighting tactics. The new plan may focus on “attacking the financial nerve center and property of organized crime,” he said.

Related coverage:

ABAJournal.com: “Lawyer for Suspected Drug Kingpins Is Murdered; 2nd Such Killing in 1 Month”

ABA Journal: “Justice in the Rough”

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