16 Mexico soldiers charged with executing civilians in border city

By Kendal Blust
Published: Monday, June 12, 2023 - 3:49pm
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Mexico’s military prosecutor has charged 16 soldiers in connection with the killing of five civilians last month. The arrests come after a news outlet released footage of the incident captured on a security camera.

The 16 soldiers have been transported to a military prison in Mexico City to face trial, according to a news release from the defense ministry.

They could also face additional charges by civilian prosecutors.

The killings took place on May 18 in the northern border city of Nuevo Laredo, Tamaulipas, but only came to light last week after the newspaper El Pais published the security camera footage. It shows a pickup crash into a wall. Mexican military arrive at the scene in and remove five men and at least one gun from the vehicle.

They are shown kicking the men and lining them up against a wall. The video seems to show the men being shot and the soldiers altering the scene by placing weapons next to the men and removing handcuffs from at least one person.

Mexico’s President Andrés Manuel López Obrador says human rights abuses by members of the military will not be tolerated. But complaints of such abuse continue to mount, particularly in Nuevo Laredo, as the military has taken on a growing number of responsibilities under this administration, including a greater role in law enforcement, infrastructure projects and operating airports and ports of entry.