On Friday, Mexican authorities announced the detainment of 158 police officers in Northern Mexico allegedly working with organized crime over the past three years. Police officers from Southern Mexico and the army have stepped in to fill the void left by the mass detainment.
Over the past three years, Mexican authorities have conducted an investigation into how to take down the drug cartels and smuggling operations along the U.S.-Mexico border. During the investigation, evidence turned up showing cozy connections between the police and the drug cartels. In several instances, the police were running drugs or turning a blind eye to the cartels.
Since 2006, over 65,000 people have been killed in gang related violence as Mexican officials have combated the entrenched cartels. The United States has offered training and support to the Mexican army in combating the cartels. Strike commando teams have been mentioned as a possible means of American assistance.
Authorities have confiscated weapons issued to the 150 officers. They are testing them against shell casings to see if any were involved in crimes in Mexico or the United States. If so, further charges will be filed.
This is not the first time Mexican officials have cracked down on police involvement in drug cartel activities. In 2008, authorities fired over 3,200 police officers for ties to the cartels. Another 145 officers were fired in Nov. 2012 for failing vetting tests.
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