Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Maybe La Santa Muerte Church Is Up to Some Ill Stuff

Mexico City authorities captured David Romo Guillén, the leader of a Santa Muerte church in the same city, for kidnapping and extortion. Allegedly, he and his gang pretended to be members of the Zetas in order to intimidate victims and extract payment. This tactic--small-time gangs taking advantage of the climate of fear and pretending to more dangerous and connected than they are--is something you see a lot in northern cities, though it's kind of odd that claims to be part of the Zetas would go very far in Mexico City. One piece of evidence of Romo's guilt, officials say, is that he opened bank accounts under a false name where the illicit cash would later be deposited. Assuming that story is correct, I like to see the authorities offers some explanation for their arrests; with the Mexican trial system being so closed, it's nice to see them do a little more to take public opinion into account, and push back against the inevitable anti-government conspiracy theories.

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