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Thread: Mexico's drug-trafficking industry

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    Mexico's drug-trafficking industry

    Mexico's drug-trafficking industry

    Full Blown War
    Over 2000 drug-related murders have been recorded in Mexico this year, vastly outpacing previous years. Many of the most grizzly have gone down in the desert city of Culiacan, where dozens of armed state policemen, along with the Mexican military, have been deployed in a Federal effort to contain the problem.

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    The murders are notable for their brazen and excessive nature. Two police officers and a female civilian were killed in this rush-hour shootout on the city's main street.

    Stain on the Community
    Over three hundred rounds were fired during the incident.

    Family and friends attend the funeral of one of the murdered officers.

    Endless Procession
    "These days (narcos) think nothing of killing us for no reason other than marking their territory," says one commander who quit the force after seeing his fellow cops murdered and concluding that police reform was hopeless.

    Not Long Empty
    Humaya Cemetery contains many graves dedicated to narco gangsters.

    By the Sword
    The gravesites at the cemetery are often adorned with elaborate tributes to the men who died. The young man who is memorialized in this poster was 16 years old.

    The exploits of the narco gangs are celebrated in ballads called narcocorridos. In the photo above, a local musician who specializes in the genre waits on the street at night in hopes of being picked up to play at a private party.

    Moving Out
    Dozens of armed State policeman, along with the Mexican military, gear up for a show of force.

    Heavy Artillery
    After a particularly violent shoot-out in May, Mexican President Felipe Calderón sent 2,000 additional troops into Sinaloa. They have rattled the narcos, impeding some trafficking routes and increasing weapons seizures, but that has only prompted the drug cartels to sew more mayhem.

    The federal police have set up roadblocks to hinder the cartel's activity.

    Police surround a house after receiving a tip that there were drugs on site.

    Bullet holes pierce a wall at the scene of a shootout where seven federal policemen were killed in a botched raid. One narco was killed, but the rest of the gang escaped.

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