Cárdenas, set to be executed tomorrow. Cárdenas, set to be executed tomorrow.

Efforts fail to halt execution of Mexican

Government calls Texas execution an 'illegal act,' citing international law

Mexico had vowed to exhaust all efforts to prevent the execution tomorrow of a Mexican inmate on death row in a Texas prison but now it appears those efforts were unsuccessful.


The Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles today voted unanimously against a recommendation to the governor to halt the execution of Mexican national Rubén Cárdenas.

In two votes that went 6-0, the board voted against recommending that Governor Greg Abbott postpone the inmate’s death by lethal injection and that his sentence not be commuted.

Yesterday, Foreign Affairs official Carlos Sada told a press conference yesterday in Mexico City that Texas prosecutors did not follow due process in the case of the 47-year-old Cárdenas, who was sentenced to death for raping and killing his 15-year-old cousin in 1997.

“From the start, there has been a failure, and from our perspective, this is an illegal act,” Sada said of the execution.

The foreign affairs undersecretary for North America said Cárdenas was not given the opportunity to speak with Mexican consular officials, a violation of the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations.

The inmate is one of 51 Mexican prisoners on death row in the U.S. who were the subject of a 2004 ruling by the International Court of Justice that the U.S. had violated international law for not informing them of their right to consular assistance.


The court ordered a review of those cases.

Sada also said Mexico would seek to overturn how Cárdenas’ confession was obtained, and look to exonerate him with up-to-date DNA testing, Reuters reported yesterday.

His lawyer has alleged that Cárdenas didn’t commit the crime. The Laredo Morning Times reported last week that the case has been plagued by claims of unreliable forensic evidence, conflicting statements and witnesses, concerns about ineffective lawyers, and allegations of a coerced confession.

But Texas prosecutor Ted Hake said the international court’s ruling is “not enforceable” and there is no mechanism in Texas to hold the review it ordered.

Besides which, he said, “This guy is guilty as sin.”

It is not the first time Mexico and the U.S. have clashed over the execution of Mexican nationals on U.S. soil because there is no death penalty in Mexico.

The case is yet another irritant for troubled Mexico-U.S. relations, already hurt by President Donald Trump’s plans for a border wall and his threats to pull out of the North American Free Trade Agreement.

“It is as if the United States were thumbing its nose at the government of Mexico and the United Nations,” said Sandra Babcock, a Cornell Law School professor specializing in international issues surrounding capital punishment. “And when I say the U.S., I should be clear that we’re talking about Texas.”

Unless the Texas governor chooses to grant a 30-day postponement, Cárdenas will die tomorrow at 6:00pm.

Source: Reuters (en), Laredo Morning Times (en), Excélsior (sp)

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  • David Nichols

    So typical of Left Wing Mexican politicians—filled with concern for a convicted rapist and murderer, and not a word about the 15 year old niece that he brutalized. They want to pick fly shit out of the pepper in an effort to rescue this pervert from the appropriate consequences of his actions…
    Where is the concern for the parents who lost a child to this despicable family member..?
    What does it say about your ideology when your concerns are always with the criminals..?

    • kmac59

      You nailed it David… well said. Welcome to Texas Pancho… next time head to California…

    • Gustavo Barajas-Munoz

      Yeah, we can say the same things about Anglos coming to Mexico escaping the United States for the crimes they have committed. People have a wrong impression that Mexico is a safe haven for criminals escaping the crimes they have committed in the states. Did you remember that poor Marine who was arrested in Mexico and sent to a Mexican Jail his name Andrew Tahmooressi. What did the state department do for him? They fought for his right to come back to the United States, and the American society supported his release from a Mexican prison. The U.S. media made out sound like it was a hostage situation that an Anglo American did not deserve to be in a Mexican prison for the crimes that he was being charged for! Everybody knew that he was selling and buying weapons in Mexico. But your poor Marine was crying to get out and he knew very well that he committed a crime that he had to pay in Mexico! So the USA fought for his release, why cant Mexico fight for this citizen that is going to be put to death? Did USA citizens care that this low life Marine committed a crime in Mexico? Hell no! Mexico has right to fight for this person to not be put to death just like the state department fought for Andew Tahmooressi release!

      • David Nichols

        Nice try Gustavo…the two situations are not even remotely similar, as you well know…
        Trying to conflate the actions of a pendejo who rapes and kills his 14year old niece with a man who realized his personal weapon (which was registered to him) was still in his car and tried to turn around before entering Mexico is the thinnest of justifications for your stance…
        Nobody smuggling weapons into Mexico would do so with weapons legally registered to them in the USA…
        The rapist scum deserved to die…and you know if he had committed that crime in Mexico the little girls family would have administered the death penalty forthwith…

        • Gustavo Barajas-Munoz

          It is still a matter of international law, Mexico has a right to protect its citizens rights in a foreign country whatever actions they have committed. The USA does the same thing to their citizens who committed crimes in other countries. If the USA can control Mexico well so can Mexico protect his or her citizen abroad. The state department will do anything to defend your rights if you have committed a crime in a foreign country. The death penalty won’t solve human behavior and that has been proven. A society who puts people to the death penalty later down the road won’t know the difference between what is moral, ethical, and just. There is a side effect to the death penalty it is not the solution! A court or a state who puts people to death is a murderous court, and that is what is being argued here. The court does not want to do justice so it is easier to kill the person than to go through the whole justice system. The judge uses the death penalty to as an ease method and does not care about the situation. Again a court that puts people to death is a murderous court that is what is being argued.

          • David Nichols

            Of course Mexico has the right to lobby on behalf of their citizens, that is not in dispute here…
            The dispute is about the death penalty…
            Just as Mexico has rights, so does the USA Gustavo, and Texas law provides for the death penalty for the crimes this dirtbag committed…that’s their right and they are exercising that right…
            Maybe if Cardenas had not illegally entered Texas and instead raped and murdered his niece in Mexico he wouldn’t have faced the death penalty, but instead would have gotten 40 years in a Mexican prison–which he would have never survived..! They don’t think kindly towards child rapists in Mexican prisons, or US prisons for that matter…
            BTW, in case you don’t know how the legal system works in Texas, the death penalty is not the judge’s decision, that decision comes from the jury, after a separate proceeding called the ” penalty phase”
            You can call it murderous if you like, you can call it agua para chocolate…it makes not the slightest difference what you call it–we call it justice, and so does the Bible, as in ” an eye for an eye”
            Any Mexican who doesn’t want to face the consequences of United States law can 100% avoid it by staying in their own country, or not committing crimes in the USA…

          • Gustavo Barajas-Munoz

            The Muslims also believe in the same death penalty “An eye for an eye.” An eye for an eye does not mean to take revenge it means to compensate the person with money not revenge that is what the courts have become a revenge system not a justice system. The justice system in Texas is more of a revenge than it is justice! The Texas system needs a huge reform and so does California revenge is not Justice and that is what Americans have wrong!

          • David Nichols

            Like everybody Gustavo, you are entitled to your opinion…
            It would probably be helpful for you to remember that your opinions are not universal truth, they are simply your opinions and they represent the sum of your education, your experience and your ideology…other people have had different education, different experiences and different ideologies…
            It does not diminish other people by virtue of disagreeing with your world view…
            It is not important to me that you change your opinion, neither is your opinion going to change mine, so we are at an impasse, aka ” Mexican Standoff”…
            Que sera, sera

          • Gustavo Barajas-Munoz

            My opinion? No it is not my opinion it was people are doing and I see it in front of my eyes it is called the elephant in the room “taking revenge” unfortunately, the first world nation known as the USA forgot how to implement Justice, and the people who live in that country are becoming revengeful and hateful towards each other and to the whole world! The police are taking revenge against the citizens of the USA, and the people are taking revenge against the government! So I see no justice in the court system needless to say with the police, and with citizens. There is a difference between revenge and justice I hope that you are a wise citizen who know when a court is either revengeful or doing justice. We have to say that Texas is a revengeful state with a revengeful court system. In the end there has been more people put to death in Texas and some of those people were put to death even while they were innocent! Revenge or Justice you pick? Under the Obama administration and Trumps administration there has been more revenge than there has been justice. Justice is not revenge and Texans should know that!

          • David Nichols

            Yeah Gustavo…it is so enlightening to receive advice on what constitutes “Justice” from a paisano of a country that makes a mockery of Justice through a legal system where the verdicts are, by and large, for sale to whomever offers the most cash…
            It’s laughable that you see virtue in that Mexico’s legal system doesn’t have a death penalty, while extra-judicial murders are in the tens of thousands every year…who needs a legal route to the death penalty when for 5000 pesos you can have a sicario take care of it tomorrow…
            Sanctimonious hypocracy Gustavo…
            No mas amigo, no vale la pena..!

          • Gustavo Barajas-Munoz

            Your country calls it bail bonds another term for la mordida!

          • David Nichols

            More ignorance on display for all to see…
            Bail bonds are a mechanism to allow the release from jail before trial, of someone accused of a crime.
            Unlike what happens in Mexico, where it is possible for the accused to spend years in jail before adjudication of the charges.
            Bail bonds are designed to assure that the accused shows up for court as scheduled, and the money is returned to the person posting the bond when they do…
            No mordida involved…! But since it exists on every level in Mexico, you can be forgiven for thinking it is like that everywhere…

          • Gustavo Barajas-Munoz

            You know it turns out that you are a South American and all South American hate Mexicans for what Mexico has become and is becoming a power country. The reason as you state why Mexico has hypocrisy is because your Latin American brothers exported that culture to Mexico. A sicario is a Colombian invention where they have no culture. Again, Texas Revenge or Justice? Anybody in the USA who has money does not have to go to jail. How about Americans cops who shoot and kill their own citizens do not have to be put into prison because they are above the law. Anyways Crime is very high in the United States and there are more murders in the USA than they are in Mexico. Mexico was caught in a bad situation under the Obama administration where the death rates where high, but that is no longer the case! Mexico has the numbers of the people who were killed and Mexico has nothing to hide, the USA the “hero that nobody needs” does not want to disclose the murder rates that happen all the time in the USA. Remember the Texas shooter at the church? The Las Vegas shooter in Nevada all the shooting that happen in the United State are high! A massacre in the USA is three people or more and that happens everyday in the USA. The USA is not a model country to follow or envy the world is realizing that Anglo way of life is not enviable!

          • David Nichols

            South American..??
            Your ignorance in that regard is only exceeded by your ignorance regarding the United States.
            Keep picking the flyshit out of the pepper gustavo, it feeds your need to feel superior….

          • Parque_Hundido

            Isn’t this a bit rich coming form someone who hails from a country with the highest rate of gun related deaths in the world?

            If you’re trying to claim a moral or political high ground, you’ll need to work harder.

            You could also use some help with your English: “justice” is not capitalized unless you’re referring to a Supreme Court judge. You’ve misused “whomever” as the subject of a verbal phrase. That sentence needs to be fixed. While we’re at it, “extra-judicial murder” is a nonsense term. All murders are by definition extra-judicial. And one cannot be a “paisano of a country”.

            You might want to think twice before you attempt to take a moral high ground or dole out advice to others. You seem to struggle to express yourself in basic English.

          • Gustavo Barajas-Munoz

            Another racist South American!

          • Gustavo Barajas-Munoz

            Do not worry about it Parque Hundido!

          • Parque_Hundido

            Huh? Not sure I understand you.

    • Parque_Hundido

      You realize that:

      1. Peña Nieto is a center-right politician


      2. Every Mexican head of state since 1929 has lodged the exact same protest when a Mexican national faces the death penalty anywhere in the world.

      Why is it that the most egregiously ignorant Americans are the first to offer lessons and advice to others? You’re out of your league David.