7 Men Executed & Left on Busy Mexican Roundabout With Notes Nailed to Their Chests With Ice Picks

A disturbing and graphic photo out of Mexico reportedly shows the dead bodies of seven men, propped up in plastic chairs and displayed on a busy roundabout. The men appear to have been executed, a grisly reminder of how brutal Mexico can be.

The bodies were found near a Pepsi bottling plant in the Mexican city of Uruapan, Reuters reports. Some of the dead bodies had their hands and feet bound.

Even more disturbing, the corpses had messages nailed to their chests with ice picks, SkyNews reports. The messages warned that criminals would face even more violence, however, the killers did not identify themselves.

“Warning: This is going to happen to muggers, pickpockets, kidnappers, rapists and extortionists,” one of the notes read.

Read more here.

Mexico Police Detain 15-Year-Old in Drug Murders

Prosecutors said Saturday that a 15-year-old boy has confessed to running a drug trafficking gang on the Mexican resort island of Isla Mujeres and murdering two women who reportedly worked as drug dealers.

It was the second time in less than a year that an extremely young male has been detained as a purported drug gang killer in Mexico. Last November, soldiers arrested a 14-year-old U.S. citizen who confessed to killing four people whose beheaded bodies were found hanging from a bridge.

Mexican officials say the involvement of youths in such crimes reflects the difficulty drug cartels are having in recruiting adults, but it also raise fears that Mexico’s drug violence may have accustomed young people to extreme levels of violence.

The Isla Mujeres cases involve a youth who prosecutors in the Caribbean coast state of Quintana Roo identified only by his nickname, “El Gallito” or “The Little Rooster”.

Heavily tattooed, El Gallito appears more mature than his age, prosecutors said.

State Attorney General Gaspar Garcia Torres said the boy claimed to have been in charge of the lucrative Isla Mujeres drug market for a local gang known as “Los Pelones,” equivalent to the Bald or Shaved Heads. The gang is reputedly fighting the Zetas cartel for control of the area around the coastal resort of Cancun.

A spokesman for the prosecutors office said the boy told investigators that he and two older associates slashed the throats of the two women at a hotel on Isla Mujeres. Their women’s bodies were found before dawn Thursday, and El Gallito was detained Friday.

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Mexican gunman fires across border toward U.S. highway workers

At least one Mexican gunman fired a high-powered rifle across the border at four U.S. road workers Thursday in an isolated ghost town east of Fort Hancock, Hudspeth County sheriff’s officials said.

The bullets did not injure the four men.

Mike Doyle, chief deputy of the Hudspeth County Sheriff’s Office, said a rancher spotted a white pickup fleeing the area on the Mexican side at 10:30 a.m. — the time the shots were fired.

The bullets stuck private land along the unpaved Indian Hot Springs Road, which is about half a mile from the border fence. Hudspeth County borrowed the land to store gravel and rocks used for road construction. The workers were filling a hole left last year by rainstorm damage.

The ghost town of Fort Quitman is 25 miles east of Fort Hancock and 80 miles southeast of El Paso. Fewer than a dozen ranchers raise cattle in the remote area.

Doyle said the gunman might have shot at the road workers to distract them or get them to flee.

“Maybe they were trying to get them outside this area,” he said.

Doyle said the sheriff and the Texas Rangers at this point are assuming the bullets were fired from Mexico. He said one of the county workers said he heard eight shots that “sounded like high-powered rifles.”

On the Mexican side, the nearest community is Banderas, but there are roads that connect to Ojinaga, right across from Presidio, and also to Juárez.

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Obama Administration’s New Proposed Gun Regulation for Border

The Obama administration’s plan to force new reporting requirements on thousands of gun dealers near the Mexico border is under fire from members of his own party.

At least three Democrats in the Senate and several more in the House are voicing opposition to a proposed regulation from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives that would require about 8,500 gun dealers in four states – California, New Mexico, Arizona and Texas – to report gun sales of two or more high-powered rifles sold within five consecutive business days.

The proposal isn’t connected in any way to the mass shooting in Arizona last weekend that left six people dead and 14 others wounded, including Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, D-Ariz., because the suspect used a handgun, which is already covered under these reporting requirements.

The new regulation would cover semiautomatic rifles greater than .22 caliber with detachable magazines.

Sen. Mark Begich, D-Alaska, has asked the ATF to withdraw its request to the White House for emergency authority to enact the regulation.

“While I understand the importance of cracking down on violence and gun trafficking along the U.S.-Mexico border, this wide-reaching regulation would punish law-abiding American gun owners and impede their Second Amendment rights,” Begich wrote in a letter last week to ATF Acting Director Kenneth Melson. “Instead, we must secure our border and target Mexican drug cartels, as well as participating offenders in the United States.”

Read more here.

Drug Killings Make 2010 Deadliest Year for Mexico Border City

The embattled border city of Ciudad Juarez had its bloodiest year ever with 3,111 people killed in drug violence, an official said Saturday.

The city across from El Paso, Texas, has seen its homicide rate soar to one of the highest in the world since vicious turf battles broke out between gangs representing the Juarez and Sinaloa cartels in 2008.

That year, 1,587 people were killed in drug violence, and the toll increased to 2,643 in 2009.

Ciudad Juarez’s bloodiest month last year was October, when 359 people were killed, said Arturo Sandoval, a spokesman for prosecutors in Chihuahua state, where the city is located.

Sandoval did not give statistics on murders unrelated to the drug war.

More than 30,000 people have been killed in drug violence nationwide since President Felipe Calderon launched an offensive against the cartels after taking office in December 2006.

In the southern state of Guerrero, four members of a family were killed Saturday when gunmen opened fire at a New Year’s celebration in the town of Piedra Iman.

State investigators said the four men, ages 80, 60, 32 and 17, were slain at a party on a basketball court.

‘Anchor Baby’ Constitutional Amendment to Face Scrutiny in Congress

The end of the year means a turnover of House control from Democratic to Republican and, with it, Congress’ approach to immigration.

In a matter of weeks, Congress will go from trying to help young, illegal immigrants become legal to debating whether children born to parents who are in the country illegally should continue to enjoy automatic U.S. citizenship.

Such a hardened approach — and the rhetoric certain to accompany it — should resonate with the GOP faithful who helped swing the House in Republicans’ favor. But it also could further hurt the GOP in its endeavor to grab a large enough share of the growing Latino vote to win the White House and the Senate majority in 2012.

Legislation to test interpretations of the 14th Amendment as granting citizenship to the children of illegal immigrants will emerge early next session. That is likely to be followed by attempts to force employers to use a still-developing web system, dubbed E-Verify, to check that all of their employees are in the U.S. legally.

There could be proposed curbs on federal spending in cities that don’t do enough to identify people who are in the country illegally and attempts to reduce the numbers of legal immigrants.

Democrats ended the year failing for a second time to win passage of the Dream Act, which would have given hundreds of thousands of young illegal immigrants a chance at legal status. House Republicans will try to fill the immigration reform vacuum left by Democrats with legislation designed to send illegal immigrants packing and deter others from trying to come to the U.S.

Democrats, who will still control the Senate, will be playing defense against harsh immigration enforcement measures, mindful of their need to keep on good footing with Hispanic voters. But a slimmer majority and an eye on 2012 may prevent Senate Democrats from bringing to the floor any sweeping immigration bill, or even a limited one that hints at providing legal status to people in the country illegally.

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DREAM Act hunger strike spreads/Student ignorance is rampant

University students across Texas this week joined San Antonio students in a hunger strike aimed at pressuring U.S. Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison to vote for the DREAM Act, a bill that would provide a path to citizenship for students and soldiers brought to the country illegally as children.

Started two weeks ago by a dozen students at the University of Texas at San Antonio, the hunger strike spread this week to UT campuses in Austin, Dallas, Arlington, Brownsville and Edinburg, as well as the University of North Texas in Denton, according to members of DREAM Act NOW!, the UTSA student group that organized the strike.

The group is part of a national coalition called United We DREAM, which brings together activists in each state. Universities in Florida and Indiana have also begun striking in solidarity, members said.

“Now that they have seen we are still going and not planning to stop, some have joined us,” said Claudia Sanchez, one of the UTSA strikers. Sanchez, 29, is a U.S. citizen, but many of her fellow strikers are in the country illegally.

Hutchison met with a DREAM Act activist in Washington last week in hopes the meeting would end the hunger strike, according to a spokeswoman. Sanchez said San Antonio strikers want a face-to-face meeting with Hutchison when she comes home to Texas for the holidays.

“We want to start talking about the specifics of the DREAM Act so she can tell us exactly what she doesn’t agree with,” Sanchez said. “We are giving her until Thanksgiving. If not, we are going to start stepping up our campaign. We will put more pressure on her.”

Read more here.

Mexican Gangs Maintain Permanent Lookout Bases in Hills of Arizona

By Adam Housley

Mexican drug cartels have set up shop on American soil, maintaining lookout bases in strategic locations in the hills of southern Arizona from which their scouts can monitor every move made by law enforcement officials, federal agents tell Fox News.

The scouts are supplied by drivers who bring them food, water, batteries for radios — all the items they need to stay in the wilderness for a long time

“To say that this area is out of control is an understatement,” said an agent who patrols the area and asked not to be named. “We (federal border agents), as well as the Pima County Sheriff Office and the Bureau of Land Management, can attest to that.”

Much of the drug traffic originates in the Menagers Dam area, the Vekol Valley, Stanfield and around the Tohono O’odham Indian Reservation. It even follows a natural gas pipeline that runs from Mexico into Arizona.

In these areas, which are south and west of Tucson, sources said there are “cartel scouts galore” watching the movements of federal, state and local law enforcement, from the border all the way up to Interstate 8.

“Every night we’re getting beaten like a pinata at a birthday party by drug, alien smugglers,” a second federal agent told Fox News by e-mail. “The danger is out there, with all the weapons being found coming northbound…. someone needs to know about this!”

The agents blame part of their plight on new policies from Washington, claiming it has put a majority of the U.S. agents on the border itself. One agent compared it to a short-yardage defense in football, explaining that once the smugglers and drug-runners break through the front line, they’re home free.

“We are unable to work any traffic, because they have us forward deployed,” the agent said. “We are unable to work the traffic coming out of the mountains. That traffic usually carries weapons and dope, too, again always using stolen vehicles.”

The Department of Homeland Security denies it has ordered any major change in operations or any sort of change in forward deployment.

“The Department of Homeland Security has dedicated unprecedented manpower, technology and infrastructure resources to the Southwest border over the course of the past 16 months,” DHS spokesman Matt Chandler said. “Deployment of CBP/Border Patrol and ICE personnel to various locations throughout the Southwest border is based on actionable intelligence and operational need, not which elected official can yell the loudest.”

While agents in the area agree that southwest Arizona has been a trouble spot for more than a decade, many believe Washington and politicians “who come here for one-day visit” aren’t seeing the big picture.

They say the area has never been controlled and has suddenly gotten worse, with the cartels maintaining a strong presence on U.S. soil. More than ever, agents on the front lines are wearing tactical gear, including helmets, to protect themselves.

“More than 4,000 of these agents are deployed in Arizona,” Chandler says. “The strategy to secure our nation’s borders is based on a ‘defense in depth’ philosophy, including the use of interior checkpoints, like the one on FR 85 outside Ajo, to interdict threats attempting to move from the border into the interior of our nation.”

Without placing direct fault on anyone, multiple agents told Fox that the situation is more dangerous for them than ever now that the cartels have such a strong position on the American side of the border.

They say morale is down among many who patrol the desolate area, and they worry that the situation won’t change until an agent gets killed.