Tourism and expat hotspots Polanco and Roma-Condesa have been identified by Mexico City authorities as among the eight most dangerous areas of the capital due to the numerous high-impact crimes committed there.
The other six police sectors identified by the Ministry of Citizens Security (SSC) as leading a list of 72 high-risk zones across the capital are Lomas de Plateros, in the borough of Álvaro Obregón; Cuautepec, in Gustavo A. Madero; Tacuba, in Miguel Hidalgo; Oasis, in Iztapalapa; Padierna, in Tlalpan; and Itzaccíhuatl, in Iztacalco.
A large number of high-impact crimes are committed in all of the top eight sectors but the types of offenses that are most prevalent vary between each one.
In Polanco, a swanky district west of the downtown that is home to upscale boutiques and tourist attractions such as the Soumaya Museum and the capital’s only aquarium, the most common crimes are muggings. People who have been seen withdrawing cash from an ATM are a frequent target of criminals.
The police sector that takes in Condesa and Roma, trendy adjoining neighborhoods filled with restaurants and bars, ranks among the most dangerous of Mexico City due to the high incidence of the extortion practice known as derecho de piso – the charging of regular payments in exchange for allowing commercial activity to continue undisturbed – as well as other types of extortion and business robbery.
In Lomas de Plateros, one of the areas of most concern to the SSC, gunfights between rival drug trafficking groups, which in some cases have resulted in deaths, are the biggest problem. There is also a high incidence of muggings in the area, located approximately 15 kilometers southwest of Mexico City’s historic center.
Muggings in the street and on public transport, homicides and gunshot injuries are all commonplace in Cuautepec, located in the far north of the capital near the México state municipalities of Tultitlán and Tlalnepantla. Criminal groups, including a cell of the Jalisco New Generation Cartel, are believed to fighting for control of the area.
In Tacuba, an area northwest of the downtown that encompasses the neighborhood of the same name as well as Anáhuac, Tlaxpana, Argentina Poniente and Argentina Antigua, the most frequently-committed high-impact crime is robbery aided by the use of a weapon such as a firearm or knife.
The incidence of muggings on public transport and in the street is high in both Oasis and Itzaccíhuatl, police sectors that border each other in the southeast of the city. Finally, Padierna in the southern borough of Tlalpan is notorious for homicides – bodies and human remains have both been found in the area.
The Mexico City government’s identification of the eight crime-ridden areas led to the deployment of an additional 800 police officers to them.
In an interview with the newspaper El Universal, Luis Martín Rodríguez Jiménez, a police chief in the west of Mexico City, noted that the capital still faces a police shortage after losing 5,000 officers over the past 10 years. Authorities are aiming to recruit that number of police by the end of the year, he said.
In terms of homicide numbers, Mexico City was the ninth most violent entity in the country last year, with a total of 1,557 victims.
Source: El Universal (sp)