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AlphaCentauri Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-05-08 12:42 PM
Original message
At least 16 people killed in Mexican massacres
MEXICO CITY, May 4 (Reuters) - Heavily armed men killed at least 16 people, all members of a ranchers' association, in two different massacres in southern Mexico over the weekend, Mexican media said on Sunday.

Some 40 men riding in luxury vehicles and wearing uniforms of an elite police squad shot nine people dead in the town of Petatlan in the state of Guerrero on Sunday, El Universal newspaper reported.

And a group toting automatic weapons killed seven people in the town of Iguala, also in Guerrero, on Saturday.

Reforma newspaper said the ranchers were holding a meeting in Iguala and at least two of the sons of the association's state leader, Rogaciano Alba, were killed in Sunday's attack.

Alba himself has survived two other attacks in the past, Reforma said.

The newspapers did not say what could have triggered the attacks but well-armed drug traffickers are active in Guerrero, a poor, mountainous state on the Pacific coast home to the Acapulco beach resort.

Clashes over land rights or local politics are also common in Guerrero. (Reporting by Cyntia Barrera Diaz, editing by Todd Eastham)
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Judi Lynn Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-05-08 01:03 PM
Response to Original message
1. Do you think any of these people were also involved in growing dope?
I found an article which mentions Rogaciano Alba, but I grasped very little from it other than "cows" and "pigs" and "corn" and "beans!"

En Guerrero trabajamos para generar la confianza de la poblacin y lograr resultados positivos: Zeferino Torreblanca

Direccin General de Comunicacin Social



UH, OH! Look at this one:Army Atrocities in Mexico
Army Atrocities in Mexico
October 02, 2002 By Alice Hutchinson

Ever since Lucio Cabanas formed his Party of the Poor guerrilla movement, a 1960's equivalent of Marcos's Zapatistas, and took up arms against the Government for their murder of a group of teachers, the state has kept a firm grip on Guerrero. 'It was not a war. It was state repression', is how Navarrete recalls the forced disappearances of student activists, teachers, guerrillas, union organisers and peasant leaders who opposed the Government during the dirty war years.

Two decades later, the disappearances continue. Over the last seven years, 123 members of the Party of the Democratic Revolution (PRD), Mexico's centre-left political party have 'disappeared' in Guerrero. 60 political prisoners have been jailed on false charges. Though the military is blamed for most of the violence, 9 cases of 'disappearances' at the hands of the Guerrero State Judicial Police have been carefully documented. Today 40,000 soldiers remain in Guerrero under the pretext of fighting the 10 or so active guerrilla groups, and drug traffickers. Local experience also suggests they are present to destroy political opposition.

'The army planted the drug crops first' says Miriam Hernandez, a political activist, who worked in Guerrero but now lives in Canada. 'It gave them the perfect excuse to keep fighting us'. Army support for cattle rancher, and drug trafficker Rogaciano Alba Alvarez, key figure in the Institutional Revolutionary Party's (PRI) political structure, is well known. Unlike the majority of Mexican states who voted to overthrow the PRI in the year 2000, Guerrero, Oaxaca and Chiapas remain controlled by PRI political bosses cooperating with paramilitary forces and the Mexican army.



There's a whole lot behind this story, AlphaCentauri. Yikes.
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AlphaCentauri Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-05-08 01:30 PM
Response to Reply #1
4. I don't know, this guy was organizing cattle rancher in Guerrero
and there are a lot accusations against him from what I can read in this spanish news blogs,

Asesinan a un campesino en la sierra de Petatln; sealan a Rogaciano Alba

Rogaciano Alva mand matar a Digna Ochoa, asegura campesino de Guerrero

Pelea verbal entre Rogaciano Alba y Enrquez en la ganadera de Petatln

* El disidente denunci en pblico que el presidente del gremio municipal y estatal lo amenaz de muerte

Exponen el caso de un decapitado en la sierra; pag Rogaciano Alba, sealan
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Judi Lynn Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-05-08 01:22 PM
Response to Original message
2. He was a busy man before someone helped him join the choir celestial:
Case: Campesino Environmentalists from the Sierra of Petatln and Coyuca de Cataln

I. History
II. The Accusations Against Felipe Arreaga and Other OCESP Leaders
III. Evidence Offered by the Defense of Felipe Arreaga Sanchez
IV. Violated Rights
V. Conclusions

I. History

In 1998, a group of campesinos from the Sierra of Petatln and Coyuca de Cataln organized to advocate against excessive logging in the forests of the region. According to estimates from leaders of the campesinos, such as Felipe Arreaga and Rodolfo Montiel, in ten years the range of Petatln would be left without trees.

In 1995, Ruben Figueroa Alcocer, then governor of Guerrero, signed an agreement for the exploitation of the forest with Boise Cascade, a transnational company, which led to the massive deforestation of the region.

This agreement with Boise Cascade would cover the area of the Costa Grande region of Guerrero and came about through the Rubn Figueroa Union of Ejidos, which was created only to make sure that the ejidos would not resist the transnational corporation. Individuals such as Rogaciano Alba and Bernardino Bautista Valle worked for the Union of Ejidos and stood out for their manipulation and terror tactics in the General Meetings of Ejidatarios and later for their defamation of the campesino environmentalists.



Do you think it was his rough "business associates?"
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Judi Lynn Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-05-08 01:27 PM
Response to Original message
3. Information on one of the victims, Rogaciano Alba, gets worse as you go along!
EL Sur
Guerrero, Mexico
August 27, 2002

* Forum in Chilpancingo with human rights defenders of US and Canada

They expose the case of a person decapitated in the Mountains; Rogaciano Alba paid, they say
* Before representatives of foreign NGOs of Guerrero and the Codehum, the people denounced the human rights violations and the impunity in the state.

* Relatives and social organizations demanded support for the amnesty for the political prisoners

The former agent of the State Judicial Police, Francisco Cortes Pastenes, said that in Guerrero, the null impunity is only a publicist slogan and alluded, as an example, to the cases of the former directors of the State Judicial Police, commandants and agents who are involved in the disappearance of nine people that are related to the recommendation 19/2002, which according to the former agent, are not being investigated and the people responsible for them are enjoying total impunity. Cortes Pastenes reminded the audience that among the responsible people are the former director of the corporation Jaime Figueroa Velazquez and the Commandants Fortunato Zamora Paz, Victor Castro Valente, Francisco Peredo Jimenez, Angel Castro Valente and Juan Carlos Miranda Castro. He explained that the Attorney Generals Office cannot do anything against them because they are the same bosses and agents of the police who are in charge of fabricating crimes and detaining the leaders of social organizations as well as social activists, who inconvenience the government. Sofia Ventura, mother of Joviel Rafael Ventura, survivor of the massacre of Aguas Blancas and currently imprisoned in Acapulco, and mother of one of the 17 people who died in that massacre, Florente Rafael Ventura, asked for the support of the international organisms, to get the liberation of her son and to end the harassment against another of her daughters who is currently being persecuted by the police forces. I dont know where she is now. I am asking the government to let me reunite with mi children she said, and her participation ended with her tears. The mother of Alfredo Barragan Renteria, imprisoned in this capital, and accused of the assassination of the perredista advisor of Leonardo Bravo, Raul Valente Catalan, asked for the support for the release of her son. A relative of the women imprisoned in Acapulco, Azucena Villamar Pasion, accused of the kidnapping of the businessman Raul Astudillo, made the same petition. The case that attracted the most attention and preoccupied the foreign visitors as well as the locals, was the one narrated by Enriqueta Silva Quintin who came from Rancho Nuevo, in the mountains of Petatlan. She said that her 45 year-old nephew, Merejildo Torres, was taken out of her house on August 14, by Ines Millan who later decapitated him, and took his head to the municipal president, Rogaciano Alba Alvarez, so that she could get the money they had agreed for the assassination of her nephew.

They took him tied up and naked. They covered him up with a blanket and when he was sleeping, they chop his head off said the woman who informed that it was the victimary himself who when his conscience did not let him alone, he confessed to the neighbours of the community that he had killed Merejildo and told them where the body was. He said that the relatives of the dead person cannot go down the town to the municipal head town of Petatlan, to Acapulco or to this capital, because Alba Alvarez has threatened them. The individual has said that he is even going to finish with the dogs, said the women who asked for the support of the representative of the Codehum in the forum, Adelaido Memije. Silva Quintin said that the former major Alba Alvarez has picked on us because my nephews have opposed the exploitation of wood and he is not happy with that. He denounced that another one of his nephews, Salvador Cortes Torres, was assassinated on February 18, 2002, personally by the former major and in March of 2000, also, he ordered the assassination of Valentin Llanez Silva, a neighbour of Rancho Nuevo. At the same time, he keeps threatening Javier Harrison Torres. The women denounced that currently, the former major is threatening the families of the community of Las Humedades, closed to Rancho Nuevo, because they are solidarizing with her family that lives in Rancho Nuevo. We came to ask for something to be done because we dont want to live like this anymore. This person is ending up with my family and has threatened to kill everybody said the women who was able to attract the attention of the representative of the Codehum and when the forum ended he asked her to present a formal complaint and offered her that through the organism, the intervention of the authorities would be asked so that the case was investigated and the law is applied.


(The more you find out about THIS guy, the more directions you could look for people who might want to see him gone!)
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Judi Lynn Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-05-08 01:32 PM
Response to Original message
5. Here's the AP story on the original article posted:
Wave of organised crime kills 21 in Mexico
Mon May 5, 6:39 AM ET

MEXICO CITY (AFP) - Sixty gunmen stormed a ranch, killing 10 people, as a surge of organized crime across Mexico left at least 21 dead.

Gunmen with automatic weapons stormed the ranch of prominent landowner Rogaciano Alba Alvarez, who was the target of two attacks in two days, authorities said.

Six people were wounded in the assault on the ranch in Petatlan, Guerrero state.

"Early this morning (Sunday), shortly after midnight, some 60 gunmen launched an assault on the home of Rogaciano Alba Alvarez, head of the Guerrero Cattlemen's Association, with at least nine people killed and another six seriously injured," a state official told AFP.

Another person died later on the way to the hospital. The owner was not among those killed.

Hitmen arrived at the Alba ranch in six pickup trucks and opened fire with AK-47s, killing the ranch workers. The state official said one of the owner's daughter was believed to have been kidnapped.

The violence came just 24 hours after Alba narrowly escaped an attack by another hit squad Saturday at a hotel in Iguala, also in Guerrero state. Seven people were killed in that incident and another eight wounded.

The hotel was hit as the ranchers were preparing an industry convention.

Alba, who also was targeted in an attack in 2006, is a past mayor of Petatlan (1993-1995). Local media have linked him to paramilitary groups accused of killing 17 members of a local rural workers organization.

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Judi Lynn Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-05-08 01:53 PM
Response to Original message
6. The news on Alba gets worse and worse!
Edited on Mon May-05-08 01:55 PM by Judi Lynn
International delegation of human rights observers visits Mexican political prisoners...

In our visit to the Acapulco Jail, we met with 19 members of the organization of environmentalist peasants of Guerrero (OCESP). They are people that because of their defense of the forest opposed very powerful interests of rich people as the president of the cattle association of Guerrero, Rogaciano Alba Alvarez. The environmentalist peasants were preventing Albas workers from clear-cutting the forest. Rogaciano Alba is a powerful local boss that does destroy the forest to cultivate puppy flowers and marijuana. He is using the Mexican Army and a paramilitary group he has created to end the opposition to the destruction of the forest. Under this low intensity conflict strategy, Rogaciano Alba, his paramilitary group, the Guerrero State Judicial Police, and the Mexican Army have assassinated several environmentalist peasants. Others have been disappeared, tortured, or put in jail.

We also met Alfredo Torres Garcia, who is the president of the environmentalist peasants in the Acapulco jail. He told us that he has no more family because Albas men have murdered 9 of his family members. The last family member he has lost is his cousin, Meregildo Torres, who was assassinated on August 14th, 2002, in El Tremendo, Guerrero. The murderer decapitated Meregildo and brought the head back to Rogaciano Alba to receive a reward. We heard, as well, that another environmentalist peasant was burned alive.

Most of the political prisoners have been apprehended without a detention warrant. The Mexican Army has arbitrarily detained some of them. The political prisoners have also faced incommunicado periods that range from just a few hours up to 9 months. Almost all of them have been subjected to torture. Torture has been used to extract false confessions, which are used to accuse the political prisoners of crimes they didnt commit, and to condemn them to several years of prison, i.e. 40 years of prison.

In Oaxaca, we visited 15 Zapotec indigenous political prisoners of the Loxicha region. In the year 1996, this region was considered by the government to be the bastion of a guerrilla opposition group. Mass military presence was sent to the region to perform counter-insurgency operations that included surrounding the communities and gathering the inhabitants at the plazas. The soldiers had black lists with some of the locals names. Those people were taken away by the military. Some of them never came back. 150 people were arrested at that time, including the municipal authorities, which were supplanted by a government-appointed administrator, who organized a paramilitary group called Los Entregadores that is still active in the area.



Here's information on a woman who was killed, apparently, by this murdered guy, Alba's people:
Digna Ochoa
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Digna Ochoa (full name: Digna Ochoa y Plcido) (May 15, 1964October 19, 2001) was a human rights lawyer in Mexico. She was born in Misantla, in the state of Veracruz.

She went to law school in the state capital, Jalapa, in 1984 and began working part time for the Veracruz Attorney General's Offices in 1986.

On August 16, 1988, while politically active with opposition groups, and after advising her family that she had found a "black list" of union and political activists at the office of her employer, she was abducted in Jalapa, Veracruz. Ochoa claimed that her abductors were state police officers and that she was raped. There was no investigation of her allegations.

In 1991 she entered the Dominican convent of the Incarnate Word where she studied until 1999. She left without taking her vows.

In August 1999, Digna Ochoa was kidnapped and held in a car in Mexico City before being freed.

In October 1999, Digna Ochoa was kidnapped in Mexico City and interrogated overnight. She was left next to an open cylinder of gas. Mexico City police investigated and the Inter-American Human Rights Court recommended protection for her. In August 2000, she went into exile in Washington, DC, USA and, while in exile, she was presented with Amnesty International's "Enduring Spirit" Award in Los Angeles by actor Martin Sheen. In March 2001, she returned to Mexico City and in August 2001 court-ordered protection for her was lifted. She began work in law offices at 31-A Zacatecas Street in Mexico City on October 16, 2001.

Her career involved representation of various dissidents and in some cases raised allegations of human rights abuses including torture by government authorities, particularly the army. At the time of her death, she was involved in the defence of peasant ecologists in Guerrero.

Digna Ochoa was killed October 19, 2001 in Mexico City. Her body was found in the law office where she worked. A note was found by her body, warning the members of the human rights law centre where she had recently worked that the same thing could happen to them.

Several investigations followed her death. Although Mexico City officials initially ruled her death homicide, in March 2002 they ruled that it was suicide, a claim that was disputed by several senators<1>. The autopsy report indicated that her body had two .22 caliber bullet wounds. Her death was caused by a gun shot to the head. The entry wound was on the left side. According to the coroner's report, the bullet passed through the skull from left to right on a slight angle from up to down and from back to front. The bullet remained embedded in her right temporal bone. Ochoa was right handed. The other bullet entered Digna's thigh from front to back.

Photos in "google images" of Digna Ochoa:

On edit:

I forgot to mention I found the connection between Digna Ochoa and Rogaciano Alba in the article named "Army Atrocities in Mexico," posted earlier.
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AlphaCentauri Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-06-08 07:43 PM
Response to Reply #6
7. Digna Ochoa's case is a mystery
there is a lot suspicions linking government officials to her death
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