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Mexico sends more police to airport after assaults
Saturday, 07 February 2009 23:08

SecurityCornerMexico.com Recommended READING: Airport crime persists despite heightened security. AIRPORT SCAMS, How the Mafia Loots JFK Airport 






Mexico City Airport

As in many other cities in the world, when you arrive to Mexico City, you have to follow some basic common sense rules to protect yourself. Practically, you are taken by the hand, before you even land in Mexico City airport –if this is your first time here- to make sure that your destination, whether a hotel or home is safe. Useful information that includes round the clock taxi and other transportation services operating from the airport is provided. As of late, sad to say, foreigners have been the victims of crime in the vicinity of the airport. Pertinent recommendations to help you avoid becoming a statistic are provided.

UPDATE, by our Readers: CUSTOMS - You are required to complete two different customs forms upon arrival.  One applies to yourself the other pertains to your baggage. CURRENCY EXCHANGE – Exchanging your currency at a US airport may cause you to lose 10% of your currency’s value, wait.  There is no difference in currency exchange rates between Mexico City airport exchanges and the exchanges downtown. Additional TIPS by The Economist. 

RECOMMENDED Reading: Airport Security Technology Stuck In the Pipeline, by Washington Post, February 8, 2008

Mexico City Seen from a Helicopter 

Thanks to Oscar Ruiz, our pilot


The Associated Press, February 7, 2009

— Mexico has assigned 100 more federal police officers to the capital's airport following a series of assaults on travelers who exchanged money.

Five of the victims have been foreigners, including a French scientist who was killed.

Federal Police official Brig. Gen. Alfredo Fregoso says the reinforcement brings to 500 the number of federal officers patrolling the airport.

Prosecutors say at least 18 people who were recently robbed outside the airport were apparently followed after exchanging money inside.

The French scientist was shot in the head last month after assailants intercepted his car and stole 4,800 euros ($6,336).

Fregoso's announcement Saturday came a day after a Colombian man became the 18th reported

© Copyright 1995-2009 Union-Tribune Publishing Co.

French scientist shot near Mexico City airport dies

By JULIE WATSON Associated Press
Jan. 31, 2009

MEXICO CITY — A French scientist who was shot in the head during a robbery near Mexico City’s airport died on Saturday.

Christopher Augur died at a Mexico City hospital four days after his assault, the fourth such incident near the airport involving foreigners in a year, the Mexico City prosecutor’s office said.

Augur was a member of France’s Institute of Research for Development, or IRD, and had been working with Mexico’s Metropolitan Autonomous University’s biotechnology department for several months, according to a statement from French Ambassador Daniel Parfait.

He helped to train French and Mexican researchers, and Parfait said he had a great love for Mexico. The embassy did not confirm Augur’s age.

“Mr. Augur was respected and esteemed as much in scientific circles as by the numerous friends that he made during his trips, which took him often to Mexico,” Parfait said.

Mexican police on Friday said they’d arrested two suspects, aged 19 and 29.

A string of at least 17 airport robberies, including the four involving foreigners, could be the work of two or more crime gangs, or one organization with several cells, city prosecutor Luis Vasquez said. Victims in all the attacks appear to have been followed after changing money at the airport and then robbed outside the terminal.

Thieves apparently have lookouts posted near airport money exchange counters and use radios or cell phones to alert accomplices to potential targets, Vasquez said.

The other foreign victims include an English man, two Ecuadoreans and a man from Guinea. The rest were Mexican citizens.

Augur was assaulted after exchanging money and leaving the airport, as he and a driver traveled along a major boulevard. Prosecutors believe seven assailants were involved in the attack, in which three vehicles surrounded Augur’s car and forced it to stop, Vasquez said.

The driver later identified one of the suspects as the man who broke the car’s window, grabbed a bag containing money and shot Augur.

Both suspects may have been involved in a similar robbery in 2008, police said.

Copyright © 2008 The Houston Chronicle


1/27/2009, 9:59 p.m. ET
The Associated Press

MEXICO CITY (AP) — Thieves apparently targeting people who exchange money at Mexico City's international airport shot a French citizen in the head on Tuesday, and authorities warned that gangs have put lookouts at exchange windows in the terminal.

The 55 year-old French biotechnology researcher, who works at a Mexican university, was attacked and robbed of euro4,800 ($6,336) on a street near the airport, assistant city prosecutor Luis Vasquez and police said. He is in serious condition at a local hospital.

Officials at the French embassy said they could not confirm the victim's name or home town.

Mexico City police chief Manuel Mondragon said criminal gangs have posted lookouts at some of the money exchange businesses inside the airport. The lookouts tip off associates waiting outside who rob the victims after they leave the terminal. The gangs often use extreme violence.

The lookouts "send a message by radio or telephone about who has changed money ... and then cars are sent out to intercept the person," Mondragon said. "When the victim resists, it unleashes the most incredible violence, like shooting this man in the head."

The Frenchman's driver testified that two cars appeared to follow them after they left the airport, then cut them off, police said. One man got out with a gun and shot the victim when he refused to hand over the bag containing the money.

There have been about three other reported cases of foreigners being held up under similar circumstances in recent months, police say.

In one case, a tourist from Guinea was shot during a similar attack near the airport in January.

Vasquez said the two crimes may be related.

"We believe it could be members of the same gang, or another gang using the same methods," Vasquez said.

The airport itself is under the auspices of federal police, while the streets outside the terminal are patrolled by city cops.

Mexico has seen a wave of drug-related killings that claimed more than 5,300 lives in 2008, as well as violent kidnappings and common crime, but relatively few foreigners have been among the victims.

On Dec. 10, American anti-kidnapping expert Felix Batista was abducted in northern Mexico and has not been heard from since.

Copyright 2009 Associated Press. All rights reserved.
This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
© 2009 NJ.com All Rights Reserved.
Times Online

Gunmen kill three in drug-war shootings in Marseilles

Attackers armed with a Kalashnikov assault rifle and up to three large calibre automatic pistols ambushed the victims' Peugeot 405 in one of the city's rough northern districts

(Gerard Julien/AFP/Getty Images) Police at the scene of the killings today in Marseilles

El Universal has no official political affilation and is the most read newspaper in Mexico.

Refuerzan aeropuerto tras robo a extranjeros

La Policía Federal no ha contribuido con las autoridades capitalinas para hacer trabajo de prevención y así detener los asaltos a usuarios de casas de cambio del Aeropuerto Internacional de la Ciudad de México, es por ello que la Procuraduría General de Justicia del Distrito Federal (PGJDF), busca reuniones de coordinación

Muere científico francés baleado

Dos de los presuntos responsables del asalto al científico francés fueron presentados por la PGJ del Distrito Federal (Foto: EFE ): Muere científico francés baleado.

17 denuncias antes del asalto al francés

Claudia Bolaños
El Universal

Sábado 31 de enero de 2009, This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Un total de 17 averiguaciones previas registradas desde el año pasado por asaltos a usuarios de casas de cambio ubicadas en el interior del Aeropuerto Internacional de la ciudad de México acumuló la Procuraduría General de Justicia del Distrito Federal (PGJDF) y en las cuales las víctimas refieren un mismo modo de operar.

Sin embargo, fue hasta el asalto del científico francés Christopher Augur, quien fue baleado, que autoridades federales y locales tomarán medidas para proteger a los usuarios de esos establecimientos.

Ayer, durante una conferencia de prensa se indicó que la primera de esas denuncias data de marzo del año pasado.

Lo anterior fue reconocido por autoridades de la PGJDF ante una reportera de un periódico francés que les cuestionó la falta de acción a sabiendas de las 17 averiguaciones.

Luego de la conferencia, el subprocurador de Averiguaciones Previas Desconcentradas, Luis Genaro Vázquez, se acercó a la reportera extranjera a aclararle sus dudas.

Durante el evento se señaló que se cuenta con cuatro detenidos por la agresión contra Christopher Augur, cuyo estado de salud se reporta aún grave.

Luis Genaro Vázquez indicó que una mujer identificó a Miguel Ángel Herrera García y a Giovanni Omar Apanteco López como los responsables de un asalto similar, ocurrido en marzo de 2008.

La aprehensión de los sujetos se realizó en la cantina La Flor de Mixhuca, ubicada en la colonia Magdalena Mixhuca, en el DF, donde además se detuvo a Ulises Valdez Barca y Carlos Héctor Ortiz Enrique.

El modo de operar de estas personas es usar vehículos como “muro” para bloquear el paso a sus víctimas, las cuales acudieron a casas de cambio del Aeropuerto Internacional de la ciudad de México.

También otras tres personas han hecho contacto con la Procuraduría, para acudir al Ministerio Público a identificarlos como sus posibles agresores, ya que a través de los medios observaron semejanzas físicas.

No obstante, todavía quedarían ocho personas más por detener, pues los videos captados señalan que se usaron tres vehículos para cerrar el paso al vehículo donde viajaba el ciudadano francés y quien se habría percatado de que lo seguían.

Miguel Ángel Herrera fue reconocido como el responsable de darle un balazo en la cabeza al científico tras asaltarlo.

Sin embargo, él y Giovanni Omar aseguraron trabajar en una iglesia.

Trasladan a francés baleado al Hospital Español

Foto: Archivo / El Universal 

El francés fue trasladado del Hospital Balbuena al Español a petición de la Embajada de Francia

Detienen a sujeto que robaba autos siguiendo órdenes de reos

© Queda expresamente prohibida la republicación o redistribución, parcial o total, de todos los contenidos de EL UNIVERSAL

Last Updated on Saturday, 07 February 2009 23:13
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