Friday, February 19, 2010

New Law

Felipe Calderón has submitted a new kidnapping law to the Senate. It will increase penalties for kidnappers, permit government wiretapping, and encourages undercover police work. Those all seem like sensible ideas, but I'd like to repeat what I said last year about a victims-rights laws:
Laws like these aren't a bad thing, but the reason that extortion, et al is such a huge problem is not the lack of a victims' rights law, but the fact that those charged with investigating and punishing such crimes (namely the police) are largely corrupt and/or incompetent. A new law won't be worth a whole lot if the Mexico doesn't improve the quality of the people who implement it at the most basic level.
In other words, the solution to Mexico's kidnapping problem cannot be primarily legislative.

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