Seizures of firearms and cartridges at Mexico City Airport on the rise

Seizures of firearms and cartridges at Mexico City Airport increased 589% between 2012 and 2014.

The coming and going of thousands of passengers at Mexico City International Airport (AICM) makes abandoned luggage go almost unnoticed, even a package that contains over 600 different caliber cartridges, 15 magazines for rifles and a .22 caliber handgun.


That case, investigated by the Attorney General’s Office (PGR) in 2011 -copy of which was obtained by Mexico City Newspaper EL UNIVERSAL- is only one of many. For example, a year before a piano that contained two .22 mm shotguns was sent from the United States to Mexico and days earlier authorities seized two handguns, one hidden inside a radio cassette and the other one wrapped in foil inside a hollow wooden board.

Authorities have found firearms and ammunition in unlikely places like a piano, a radio cassette and inside a hollow wooden board. (Photo: EL UNIVERSAL )


According to official reports people have also tried to introduce illegal weapons and cartridges hidden in backpacks and clothes.

Data provided by the PGR via the Transparency Act revealed that seizures of firearms cartridges at Mexico City Airport have increased from 318 in 2012, to 1,699 in 2013 and 2,193 in 2014. This means that seizures grew 589% between 2012 and 2014.

Also a total of 125 weapons were seized from 2006 to January 2015.


In 2007 only six people were arrested in connection with these cases, nine in 2008, 16 in 2009, two in 2011, three in 2012, four in 2013 and 17 last year. This means that arrests for trafficking weapons and bullets rose 466% between 2012 and 2014.

In an interview with Mexico City Newspaper EL UNIVERSAL Miriam Morales Sanhueza, chairperson of the NGO Desarma México, said that the highest number of cartridge seizures are related with the “peaks of violence”: 2009, 2011, 2013 and 2014.

She added that the official reports do not reflect what is actually trafficked.





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