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FridayAugust 12, 2011

Latino Daily News: Bringing You the Latest Hispanic Current Events and News Stories 24/7

To reflect the dynamic interests of our audience, Latino Daily News is an online daily news source and virtual cultural center for and about Latinos. We offer the latest news headlines, as well as innovative and insightful Hispanic current events stories, photos, videos, and commentaries from a Latino perspective, 24/7.

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ICE Clears Itself of Misconduct in Internal Investigation, Draws Ire from Immigrant Rights Groups

ICE Clears Itself of Misconduct in Internal Investigation, Draws Ire from Immigrant Rights Groups

Photo: ICE Arrests

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As if immigrant rights groups needed another reason to distrust the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) this week, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) cleared its agents of any wrongdoing in a recent internal investigation into reports of abuse. Earlier this year, ICE sparked controversy when federal agents allegedly followed immigrant parents to and from a Detroit elementary school as they dropped off their children, trapping the parents inside the school. After residents, advocates and state officials accused ICE of violating their own enforcement policies, ICE officials—including director John Morton—promised to investigate the matter. The results of that investigation, however, have left local community groups outraged and fearful of whether ICE is capable of holding itself accountable in the future.

Last April, six ICE agents allegedly followed immigrant parents inside the Hope of Detroit Academy, trapped them inside for nearly an hour and later arrested at least two parents “in warrantless stops” outside the school. The Alliance of Immigrant Rights and Reform Michigan (AIR) accused ICE of violating their own enforcement policies (which prohibit intimidation tactics nears schools of places of worship), and said ICE’s actions followed a “pattern of abuse,” namely “warrantless searches, detainees denied medicines and the harassment of American citizens.”

After the community protested, ICE director John Morton said the agency would launch an investigation into the accusations and take appropriate steps pending a review. The final report of the incident, however, recently given to the Michigan Messenger by ICE’s Office of Professional Responsibility, found that ICE agents did not “violate an agency policy against enforcement at sensitive locations because it took place blocks away from the school”—findings which left local immigration groups fuming:

“We believe that the ICE report was a complete whitewash that shows that the Dept. of Homeland Security and ICE in particular is unable to police itself,” said Alliance for Immigrants Rights Director Ryan Bates.

Bates said that ICE failed to interview witnesses and victims, took officers at their word when they said they had followed policy, and never addressed the issue of whether officers had warrants for searches they conducted. Bates … said that he finds it insulting that ICE claims no enforcement action happened there. “I had to ask ICE agents to leave their positions around the school,” he said.


Even Detroit Rep. John Conyers said he had some serious concerns with ICE’s review. Lawrence Garcia, president of the Michigan Hispanic Bar Association, also found the agency’s findings troubling:

They admit that they were at the school and they were conducting enforcement activities. What they deny is that that activity was violative of the policy at the time. If they stake out a sensitive location but they complete the detention at a location so many feet or blocks away they say that didn’t violate the policy as it used to exist.

The results of ICE’s internal investigation have left many fearful that ICE is incapable of monitoring itself against potential abuse and misconduct. And given the recent controversy surrounding ICE’s Secure Communities program, more than just the agency’s credibility is on the line——namely, the safety and security of the communities ICE claims to protect.

Read more at Immigration Impact →

New CDC Data Shows Increase in HIV Infection Amongst Young Latino Men

According to new HIV incidence data released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the overall number of new HIV infections has been steady from 2006 to 2009.

However, the rate of new HIV infections has significantly increased for young African American men who have sex with men (MSM). African American MSM continue to dominate new HIV infections, followed by White MSM, Latino MSM, and African American women. Latino MSM have moved from being the fourth most impacted population to being third in this new report.

The National HIV/AIDS Strategy highlights the need to concentrate our efforts to those most affected by the epidemic, and this new incidence data marks the urgency with which we must direct these efforts. The Latino Commission on AIDS recognizes the importance of how HIV affects Asian and Pacific Islanders, Native Americans, African Americans, Latinos, and White Non-Hispanic Americans. They also recognize the disproportionate impact HIV has had on communities of color since the beginning of the epidemic.

“Only through coming together we can develop new strategic partnerships and collaborations to address the epidemic in all of our communities,” states Guillermo Chacón, President of the Latino Commission on AIDS.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Feds Raid University Popular With International Students

Feds Raid University Popular With International Students

Photo: Reds Raid UNVA

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U.S. immigration officials July 29 raided the University of Northern Virginia, which bills itself as the most popular American college for Indian students, for allegedly failing to comply with federal regulations for administering foreign student visas.

Officials from the Immigration and Customs Enforcement Student and Exchange Visitor Program served UNVA officials in Annandale, Va., with a notice of intent to withdraw the college’s ability to accept foreign students. The college now has 30 days to respond to the ICE notice. Almost 90 percent of UNVA’s students are from Andhra Pradesh.

ICE has set up a Website for UNVA students, informing them that they may continue to attend classes at UNVA if they attend school full-time and do not work. UNVA students also have the option of transferring to another university approved by ICE, or leaving the country.

Read more by HS News Staff →

LATINO BLOTTER: Man Threatens Suicide at the Top of 30 Rock in NYC

LATINO BLOTTER: Man Threatens Suicide at the Top of 30 Rock in NYC

Photo: Police try to talk Jorge Ruiz down from a ledge at famed 30 Rockefeller Plaza

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On Wednesday, Jorge Ruiz climbed over a glass barrier and placed himself on the ledge of 30 Rockefeller Plaza’s observation deck, planning to jump after becoming distraught over news regarding publication of a book he’d written.

At about 3:50 p.m., the 23-year-old from Las Vegas, managed to get himself over a 6-foot glass wall and get out far enough out into the New York skyline that people on the street below could see the suicidal man.

ImageWhen police were alerted of the man’s intentions, they ordered everyone on the observation deck away, and began trying to talk him down.

Ruiz, a diagnosed schizophrenic, told police he was upset that a book he had written was not going to be published.

Witnesses say there were many moments in which they thought they were going to see a man fall to his death, as he kept standing up and sitting down.

Finally, at around 4:50 p.m., police were able to talk Ruiz back off the ledge. He was immediately taken to Bellevue Hospital for a psychiatric evaluation.

Read more at NY Daily News →

In Case You Ever Wondered, it has Been Confirmed: Beto y Enrique aka Bert and Ernie Aren’t Gay!

In Case You Ever Wondered, it has Been Confirmed: Beto y Enrique aka Bert and Ernie Aren’t Gay!

Photo: Bert and Ernie. Not Gay, best friends only.

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Plaza Sésamo officials have dissipated the doubts: Beto y Enrique, as they are known in Spanish land, are best friends that happen to live together on Sesame Street, and not life partners.

In the 40 some years the genius Jim Henson show has been on the air, the question has come up a handful of times.  However, there has never been a petition urging them to come out of the closet or call for them to make their relationship official like there is now.

Are Beto y Enrique “partners,” between quotation marks, like that?

Can’t really blame the public for wondering. After all, the pair has been living together in the same one bedroom apartment since the sixties, tell bedtime stories to each other, are unusually tidy, etc.

There are too those like Joan Rivers, who laugh at the idea:

“There is NO WAY that Bert and Ernie are gay. They haven’t changed their outfits in 25 years,” she said on Twitter.

So are they or are they not?

After thousands of people signed online petitions and urged Facebook for Sesame Workshop and PBS to let Beto y Enrique get married, since in New York (home of Plaza Sésamo) gay marriage became legal, the creators felt like it was time to dissipate any doubts about the orientation of Beto y Enrique.

“Bert and Ernie are best friends. They were created to teach preschoolers that people can be good friends with those who are very different from themselves.  Even though they are identified as male characters and possess many human traits and characteristics (as most Sesame Street Muppets™ do), they remain puppets, and do not have a sexual orientation.”

Image

Read more by HS News Staff →

México Celebrates 100 Years of “Cantinflas” (VIDEO)

México Celebrates 100 Years of “Cantinflas” (VIDEO)

Photo: 100 Years of Cantinflas

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Charlie Chaplin once said that his Mexican counterpart, Cantinflas, was the funniest comedian alive. Celebrate with us 100 years of “Cantinflas”

The voice of Mario Moreno, his clever speech and grammatical inventiveness, that ridiculously funny mustache that made his mouth look like it was between quotation marks, his humble demeanor, enormous heart, quick wit, rope belt, silly hat, all those things that made Chaplin say to him once “in this world, there is only you and me,” are one hundred years old today.

His image, both in cartoons and photos, as well as immortalized in 50 different films, is everywhere today in a México that has turned 100% Cantinflas, in the celebration of his hundredth birthday, because in many ways, Cantinflas is México.

Cantinflas’ “tramp” character, or “peladito” became an icon and the voice of the so many unprivileged Mexican folk that plow through life with wits, audacity, a big heart and a sense of humor.

Cantinflas was the eldest child of Pedro Moreno Esquivel, a mail carrier, and María de la Soledad Reyes Guizar. The Michoacán couple had eight children

From very humble beginnings, Cantinflas made it through difficult situations with the same street smarts that he’d showcase in his movies, after unsuccessfully taking stabs at boxing, and bullfighting.

Today, Mexico City’s metro, a system that moves some 6 million people every day is playing audio clips of Cantinflas emblematic syntactically convoluted dialogue, the comedian’s most recognizable trait.

“Cantinflear,” the art of speaking a stream of words, without actually saying anything at all; a verb actually recognized by the Royal Academy of Spanish Language a year before the actor’s death, and defined as “speaking in a random way, incongruently and not saying anything.”

Take a look at the selection of Cantinflas clips below, and join us in our forums section, where we will be “Cantinfleando” left and right and vice versa, why? To observe a hundred years of Cantinflas, but not year by year because that would take a hundred years of observation and staring is in poor taste, so instead we’ll pay homage, as long as after we pay we can get some change. Confused? You’ve been Cantinflas-ed.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Hispanics Drinking More Bottled Water than Any Other Demographic, Marketers Taking Notice

Hispanics Drinking More Bottled Water than Any Other Demographic, Marketers Taking Notice

Photo: Hispanics Drinking More Bottled Water than Any Other Demographic, Marketers Taking Notice

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According to a study by the Archives of Pediatric Adolescent Medicine minorities are drinking more bottled water than anyone else, because they find it safer and more convenient. And it seems marketers have taken advantage of that belief and begun gearing their bottled water towards Hispanic consumers.

Taking notice of the tendency of Hispanics to reach for bottled water, business owners like Paul Kurkulis founder and president of Las Oleadas, a mineral-enhanced water, are pumping into the bottled water game.

The Colorado-based company first marketed itself directly to Hispanics with its name, Las Oleadas, which is loosely translated from Spanish to mean “the momentum that drives a wave.” Originally, the bottle’s labels were only in Spanish, but English is now printed on them as well.

In the past two years, brands like Coca Cola and Nestle have launched campaigns geared towards minorities. In the summer and fall of 2010, Nestle came out with its “Better Habits for a Better Life” campaign for its Pure Life bottled water. The campaign was aimed at Hispanics, using a commercials with a Latina mother talking to another mother about benefits of water and even included a “challenge” so to speak.

At the center of Nestle’s campaign was “La Promesa Nestle Pure Life,” in which mothers were challenged to substitute one sugary drink a day with a bottle of water, their Pure Life of course. Once the mothers made the pledge, they were entered to win more than $20,000 in prizes.

Making campaigns like this successful in the fact that Hispanics are under the impression that bottled water is healthier and safer. However, in 2008, the Environmental Working Group tested the quality of 10 major bottled water brands. The study revealed bottled water had the same chemical contaminants found in tap water, showing that bottled water is no safer than water from the faucet.

What Hispanics and the majority of others do not realize is that 47.8 percent of the water in bottled water comes from municipal taps, then same place household water that flows into their homes.

So though bottled water has been proven to be no more ‘healthy’ than tap water, marketers continue to push how much better and cleaner their bottled tap water is, with Hispanics seemingly falling for it hook, line, and sinker.

Read more at Forbes →

First Recorded U.S. Death from Vampire Bat Bite Kills 19-Yr-Old Migrant Farm Worker

First Recorded U.S. Death from Vampire Bat Bite Kills 19-Yr-Old Migrant Farm Worker

Photo: Vampire Bat Bite Kills Migrant Farm Worker

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The first recorded case of death from a vampire bat bite has occurred with the passing of a 19-year old migrant farm worker from human rabies. 

The case is believed to have happened a year ago with the 19-year old having been bitten in Michoacan, Mexico and then coming to work the fields in Louisiana.  The Center for Disease Control only reported the case today. 

The vampire bat bit the unidentified man on the foot while he slept.  Ten days after the bit he came to work in the fields and became severely ill; when most known diseases were eliminated as the cause doctors determined he had human rabies. 

Those individuals that came in contact with the man were notified of their possible exposure risks.  Though this is the first case of human rabies coming from a vampire bat bite, in Latin America vampire bat bits are the number 1 cause of human rabies there.

The CDC in reporting this death also noted that “research suggests that the range of these bats might be expanding as a result of changes in climate.”

Read more by HS News Staff →

Newsroom Diversity Lacking as Struggling Economy Causes Staff Cuts

Newsroom Diversity Lacking as Struggling Economy Causes Staff Cuts

Photo: Newsroom Diversity Lacking as Struggling Economy Causes Staff Cuts

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It appears that as the U.S. economy continues its struggle, newsrooms are being forced to let people go. However, these newsrooms seem to be becoming less diverse.

According to the American Society of Newspaper Editors’ (ASNE)2011 census, for the third straight year, the number of minority journalists has dropped. Today, just 13 percent of those working in the newsroom are minorities, with the remaining 87 being white.

Frank Blethen of the Seattle Times attributed the dwindling number to the owners willing to cut back on diversity despite it being necessary to democracy.

“Pure and simple – it’s the obscene concentration of ownership coupled with a broken, dominant ownership model which doesn’t care about journalism or diversity, or any other communal values,” Blethen said. “The newspaper business model is very sound and can support journalism and diversity if freed from these financial mercenaries and the unsustainable debt they piled on newspapers. Even in the worst of the recession, the big chains who went through bankruptcy, or still might, were pulling down 14-20 percent cash flow margins — hardly a distressed business model.”

ASNE president, Milton Coleman, told Crosscut, “At a time when the U.S. Census shows that minorities are 46 percent of the U.S. population, newsrooms are going in the opposite direction. The deputy managing editor of the Washington Post added, “This is an accuracy and credibility issue for our newsrooms.”

Of the 13 percent of minorities working in the newsroom overall, about 11 percent of those are supervisors. Among the minority staffers, African American reporters make up about 50 percent, with Asian Americans making up the majority (42 percent) of the other half.

Blethen believes the drop is reversible but will take the enforcement of rules by the FCC to change the direction of the trend.

If the Federal Communications Commission got its act together and repealed cross-ownership, enforced broadcast license public service requirements, and enforced its female and minority ownership rules, we would have the foundation to save our independent press and encourage diversity.”

Read more at Crossscut →

Christina Aguilera Set to be Part of Michael Jackson Tribute Concert in the Fall

Christina Aguilera Set to be Part of Michael Jackson Tribute Concert in the Fall

Photo: Christina Aguilera to Perform at Michael Jackson Tribute

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Every day the organizers of the Michael Jackson tribute concert slated for the fall are announcing whom the super star cast of performers will be and today they announced Christina Aguilera’s name. 

The concert has the support of most of Michael Jackson’s family including his mother Katherine Jackson.  The show is billed as the “Michael Forever – The Tribute Concert” and is due to take place in Wales in the United Kingdom.  It is being held to commemorate the 40th anniversary of the pop singers solo career.

Songstress Aguilera will be joining Cee Lo Green, Leona Lewis amongst others.  Some of Michael’s family members will also perform including 3T his nephews.  Many other stars were invited and declined.

According to TMZ Bruno Mars, Chris Brown and Justin Bieber have declined the personal invitation of the family. 

Read more by HS News Staff →

George Lopez Leaves With a Bang: Eva Longoria, Arsenio Hall and Slash (VIDEO)

George Lopez Leaves With a Bang: Eva Longoria, Arsenio Hall and Slash (VIDEO)

Photo: Good Bye, GLo!!!

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“López Tonight” ended last night with a hurricane of salsa, bleeps, celebrities and heartfelt thank you’s. Check out the highlights inside.

TBS might have shut down the spiciest show in late night entertainment, but thanks to YouTube and the internet, you can replay over and over the last ever late night monologue of George López here.  And if you keep hearing bleeps it’s not an error it’s Lopez’ series of f-bombs and s**t words.  If that wasn’t enough the late night band serenaded the audience with Cee Lo Green’s “F**k You” and not the censored version.

Watch celebrity guest Slash shred the guitar and Eva Longoria and Arsenio Hall share some hilarious moments interviewing George in his final show.

It was certainly one of the best things to ever happen to late night television, and shame on TBS for not renewing the Latino funnyman; Below, the parting words of George López, and if you—like us, haven’t had enough and need more GLO, don’t miss his upcoming tour with Carlos Santana!

 

Read more by HS News Staff →

‘People to People’ Travel Tours Start to Cuba

‘People to People’ Travel Tours Start to Cuba

Photo: Travel to Cuba Has Started

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On January 28th President Obama reinstated ‘people-to-people’  travel to Cuba and yesterday inaugural trips started leaving Miami.  Now everyday Americans can travel to the island nation if they are affiliated with a travel group promoting direct relations with the people of Cuba.

The people-to-people travel requirement only allows for trips where Americans engage Cuban people directly and “support their desire to freely determine their country’s future” and is simply not billed as tourism. 

The concept was developed under President Clinton but was shut down under President Bush in 2003 who saw these altruistic trips more as veiled tourism that only benefited the communist government.

Travel organizations that want to go Cuba with their groups must obtain a license from the state department and meet certain criteria.  Thus far many universities, cultural and religious institutions have planned trips many of which are sold out.  Costs varies but Insight Travel has a long weekend trip for $1,600 that doesn’t include airfare.

Read more by HS News Staff →

LATINO BLOTTER: 17-Year-Old Student Kills Memphis School Principal

LATINO BLOTTER: 17-Year-Old Student Kills Memphis School Principal

Photo: Eduardo Marmolejo, 17, accused of

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A teenage student has been arrested for the murder of the principal of a Tennessee Christian school.

Eduardo Marmolejo, 17, is being held without bond for allegedly killing Suzette York, the principal at Memphis Junior Academy, a Seventh-Day Adventist Church, after months of planning.

Thursday, police said Marmolejo told investigator that he had planned to stab York, 48, on the third day of classes when he knew he’d be the only one in the classroom with her. He stated that he did not like her and that she made him angry.

ImageA teacher found York’s body in the classroom on Wednesday.

At the Thursday hearing before Judge Sheldon McCall, the slim teenager was brought in wearing an orange jumpsuit. He was joined by his parents. Prosecutors stated the murder was premeditated and asked that the teen be held without bond, Judge McCall agreed.

Marmolejo was also ordered to undergo a mental evaluation.

“Our main concern is to determine if he is a danger to himself and a danger to the community,” McCall said.

The parents were quickly taken away after the hearing, and spoke to no one.

York had been principal at the 100-student school since 2008.

Read more at Huffington Post →

Colombian “Corralejas” Leave One Dead, A Dozen Injured (VIDEO)

Colombian “Corralejas” Leave One Dead, A Dozen Injured (VIDEO)

Photo: Man Gored To Death in Colombia's Corralejas

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WARNING This video is not for the faint of heart. “Corralejas” are bullfights in which the public is allowed to participate.

Every year, the Magdalena region of northern Colombia sees its share of the chaotic “corralejas” where the general public is invited into the bullring to tease the bulls, often more than one at a time.

Tragedy, though not the norm, is not particularly unusual.  The video below depicts how when it does happen, victims don’t stand a chance.

 

Read more by HS News Staff →

Texas Governor Rick Perry Poised to Join Presidential Race

Texas Governor Rick Perry Poised to Join Presidential Race

Photo: Rick Perry to Run in 2012

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Texas Governor Rick Perry, the nation’s longest-serving governor, is expected announce his bid for the presidency in South Carolina on Saturday (August 13). The outspoken advocate of states’ rights and conservative positions could have an outsized impact on the race among Republicans to challenge President Obama next year.

“The Texas governor with fancy boots and a swagger to match has caught the imagination of many Republicans dissatisfied with the longer-standing field of hopefuls, particularly in a year they see as a rare opportunity to take on an incumbent president with voters worried over their jobs, their investments and the country’s economic future,” writes the Houston Chronicle.

Perry likely will take credit for Texas’ relatively healthy economic situation during his tenure. In recent years, he has relished opportunities to tout the companies that have relocated to Texas from other states, particularly California. On Thursday, in fact, Perry even took a playful jab at Florida Governor Rick Scott, a Republican. “Just got off the phone with your governor who’s angry because Texas stole some jobs from Florida,” Perry told a reporter from the St. Petersburg Times.

But entering the presidential field means that Perry’s 11-year tenure as governor will come under close scrutiny. Already, Democratic operatives are questioning his narrative on job creation. David Axelrod, an Obama adviser, said Texas’ growth had more to do with high oil prices and the waging of two wars than with Perry. “I don’t think many people would attribute it to the leadership of the governor down there,” Axelrod said, according to The Associated Press.

Perry could suffer some of the same kind of criticism as many of the former GOP governors already vying for the nomination, particularly for pushing moderate or liberal policies.

Perry also supported in-state tuition for illegal immigrants and argued for the mandatory vaccination of girls for HPV, which angered some conservatives. HPV can be transmitted by sexual contact and can cause cancer.

Read more at Stateline by Daniel C. Vock →

Woman Pleads Guilty to Staging her Own Kidnapping in Guatemala In Order to Get Money from Family

Woman Pleads Guilty to Staging her Own Kidnapping in Guatemala In Order to Get Money from Family

Photo: Staged kidnapping in Guatemala

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A Virginia woman pleaded guilty in relation to a staged kidnapping in Guatemala, announced Assistant Attorney General Lanny A. Breuer of the Criminal Division, U.S. Attorney Neil H. MacBride for the Eastern District of Virginia and John V. Gillies, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI Miami Division.

Sheena Flores, 34, of Manassas, Va., pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Gerald Bruce Lee to one count of transmitting in foreign commerce, with intent to extort money, a communication containing a threat to injure another person. 

At sentencing, scheduled for Oct. 21, 2011, Flores faces a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison.

According to court documents, in July 2010, Flores was living in Guatemala with a child under the age of two who was born in Guatemala.  On July 6, 2010, from Guatemala, Flores contacted a family member in Manassas by telephone and reported that she and the child had been kidnapped by three men and that the men said that they wanted $5,000 in two hours or they were going to kill Flores and the child. 

Later that day, a family member of Flores in Manassas received numerous text messages from Flores’ cellular telephone in Guatemala threatening to kill Flores and the child if family members did not pay $10,000 in ransom by the next day.  Believing that Flores and the child had in fact been kidnapped, a family member wired $3,000 from Virginia to Guatemala.  At the time that Flores reported the kidnapping and the ransom demands, Flores knew that she and the child had not been kidnapped and was simply attempting to extort money from her family.

Read more by HS News Staff →

“The Hand with Eyes” Cartel Leader Captured, Ordered & Carried Out 600 Murders in Mexico City

“The Hand with Eyes” Cartel Leader Captured, Ordered & Carried Out 600 Murders in Mexico City

Photo: Oscar Osaldo Garcia Montoya Captured

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The leader of a brutal drug cartel faction operating in Mexico City, “The Hand With Eyes”, has been captured and arrested for being involved in the killings of 600 individuals.

36 year-old Oscar Osvaldo Garcia Montoya was arrested in Mexico City for leading “The Hand with Eyes” gang whose trademark was decapitations.  The former Mexican marine deserter worked for major Mexican cartels until forming his own group.

His nickname is “El Compayito” which represents the beloved Mexican hand puppet that covers his eye with one hand and the cartel itself is named after the puppet.  The reality is that Garcia Montoya and his gang have acknowledged ordering 300 murders and carrying out another 300 murders.

Read more at MSNBC →



FridayAugust 12, 2011