Synergy Spanish

This system teaches you Spanish, the easy way - not the academic way. With only 138 words you will be speaking Spanish.

Click

The best lawyer we have ever used!

Christian Limon, is with the Marcus Family Law Center, PLC, in El Centro (founded in 1974). She brings a comprehensive set of skills and expertise to assist her clients. She is licensed as an attorney both in Mexico and California, with her international practice in Imperial County and Mexicali. Her emphasis is family law, including cross-border custody and family support issues. Christian is also experienced in cross-border contracts and bi-national litigation (civil, commercial, family, and labor), advising several US companies in Mexico, including real estate development and maquiladora operations. Christian is a Spanish/English interpreter with a focus on legal documents and legal proceedings, as well as a California Notary. She is a member of the California BAR, Imperial County Bar Association, ANADE (Mexican Association of Corporate Attorneys) and AEM (Mexican Entrepreneurs Association).

Marcus Family Law Center, PLC

The Best Vet in Mexicali!

Dr. Rafael, the best veterinarian anywhere; he's close to the border, speaks English and has lived in Arizona! Click

The best – we’ve used them since 2008!

Mexico Insurance

Shortcut to Spanish

These terms are given for free! For a full course and options , just click on Synergy Spanish
A
1.a fin de cuentas: after all/ when all is said and done
2.a lo mejor: maybe/perhaps
3.a partir de: as from/as of
4.a pesar de: in spite of/despite
5.a propósito: by the way/on purpose
6.acabar de + infinitive: have just
7.al revés: upside down/inside out

B
8.boca abajo: face down
9.boca arriba: face up

C
10.¿Cada cuánto?: How often?
11.caer bien: be fond of/like (a person)
12.cerrar con llave: to lock
13.cómo no: you bet/of course
14.como si: as if/as though
15.costar mucho trabajo: to be hard to do
16.creo que sí: I guess so/I believe so
17.cuando mucho: at the most
18.cuanto antes: as soon as possible/at once
19.¿Cuánto tiempo?:How long?/How much time?

D
20.dar a luz: give birth
21.dar por sentado: to take for granted/to assume
22.darse cuenta: to realize
23.darse por vencido: to give in/surrender
24.de ahora en adelante: from now on
25.de al lado: next door
26.de hecho: in fact/actually
27.de ida y vuelta: round trip
28.de la noche a la manana: overnight
29.de ninguna manera: no way/absolutely not
30.de nuevo: once again/once more
31.de repente: suddenly/all of a sudden
32.de todos modos: anyway
33.de una vez: once and for all
34.de vez en cuando: every now and then
35.dejar de: to stop/to quit
36.dejar en paz: to leave alone
37. desde luego:of course/certainly

E
38.echar de menos: to miss
39.en absoluto: absolutely not
40.en cambio: on the other hand
41.en lugar de: in place of/instead of
42.en punto: on the dot/on the hour
43.en serio: no kidding/seriously
44.en todas partes: everywhere/all over the place
45.en vez de: instead of/rather than
46.es decir: in other words47.espero que no: I hope not
48.estar a punto de: to be about to
49.estar de pie: stand
50.estar de prisa: to be in a hurry

G
51.ganar tiempo: save time/gain time

H
52.hace mucho: long ago/a long time ago
53.hacer caso: to pay attention
54.hacer cola: to line up/to stand in line
55.hacer daño: be harmful/cause harm
56.hacer falta: to lack/to be needed
57.hay que: one must/ be necessary to
58.hoy en día: nowadaysI
59.ir al grano: get to the point

L
60.llevarse bien con: to get along well with
61.lo importante: the important thing
62.lo mismo: the same thing/the same
63.lo único: the only thing

M
64.más allá: beyond
65.más bien: rather/on thecontrary
66.me da igual: it’s all the same to me/I don’t care
67.me voy: I’m off
68.muy a menudo: very often/frequently
69.muy de vez en cuando: once in a blue moon

N
70.nada más: nothing else/that’s all
71.ni siquiera: not even/not so much as
72.no hay de que: don’tmention it/no thanks are needed
73.no importa: it doesn’t matter
74.no tiene que ver: it’s beside the point/it’s got nothing to do with
75.no vale la pena: not worth the trouble/it isn’t worth it

P
76.para nada: at all
77.para variar: for a change
78.perder tiempo:waste time
79.por casualidad: by any chance/by coincidence
80.por fin: finally
81.por lo menos: at least
82.por supuesto: of course/by all means

Q
83.querer decir: to mean/to mean to say

S
84.se me olvidó: it slipped my mind
85.si bien: even though
86.sin embargo: nonetheless/nevertheless
87.sin querer: without meaning to/by mistake
88.sobre todo: above all/most of all
89.soy yo: it’s me90.subir de peso: put on weight

T
91.tener que: to have to
92.tener que ver: to have to do with
93.tener razón: to be right/to be in the right
94.todo el mundo: everyone
95.tomar el pelo: to pull someone’s leg/to kid
96.tratarse de: to be about

Y
97.ya que: seeing that
98.ya terminé: I’m done/I’m finished
99.ya veremos: we’ll see

Ex-defense minister’s investigation will live up to Mexico’s prestige

‘In the past, Mexico wasn’t up to the task of punishing criminals. Now it’s different: ‘López Obrador’

The Mexican investigation into former defense minister Salvador Cienfuegos – who returned home on Wednesday after the United States dropped drug trafficking and money laundering charges against him – will live up to the country’s “prestige,” Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard said Thursday, asserting that it would be “almost suicide” to bring the ex-army chief to Mexico and then do nothing.

“There is confidence, both in the United States and in Mexico, that the investigation will meet the highest standards of effectiveness and honesty,” the foreign minister told President López Obrador’s morning news conference.

Ebrard said the United States has full confidence in and supports the federal Attorney General’s Office (FGR), which is carrying out the investigation into Cienfuegos’ alleged wrongdoings, and the Mexican judicial system.

“We think that’s very significant coming from the judicial authorities of the United States,” he said.

Agreeing to the United States Department of Justice request for the charges against former president Enrique Peña Nieto’s defense minister to be dismissed, U.S. federal Judge Carol Amon said there was no evidence or suspicion that Mexico wouldn’t conduct an investigation.

salvador cienfuegos
Will Cienfuegos face trial? Many analysts doubt it.

However, there are doubts about whether evidence the United States has given Mexico – including thousands of intercepted cell phone messages that allegedly show that Cienfuegos colluded with the H-2 drug cartel – will be admissible in Mexican courts given that it was obtained by U.S. authorities here without the authorization of a Mexican judge.

Many analysts believe that the former army chief, arrested at Los Angeles airport last month, will never be tried here, let alone set foot in jail.

But Ebrard said there will be justice “according to the provisions of Mexican law and the investigations that the FGR will carry out.”

He added that it would be “almost suicide” not to subject Cienfuegos to a thorough investigation. If that were the government’s intention it would have been better to leave him in the United States, Ebrard said.

López Obrador called on the public to have confidence in the investigation. The president added that Cienfuegos must be investigated in Mexico as a matter of sovereignty.

“We can’t allow foreign agencies to try Mexicans if there is no proof,” López Obrador said, apparently ignoring the United States’ assertion that it had a “strong” case against the former army chief.

“Besides there are cooperation agreements that have to be respected. How is is that there is a [bilateral] cooperation agreement in this area and we’re not informed that he is going to be arrested or that there is an investigation open … [against] General Cienfuegos? If that’s the case, what are cooperation agreements for?”

The president declared that the law is now applied with rectitude in Mexico as a result of his government coming to power.

“This idea that [criminals] are punished there [in the United States] and not here was created because the authorities in Mexico weren’t up to the task. Now it’s different, now there is a change,” he said.

The United States’ decision to allow Cienfuegos was highly unusual because it has previously shown little faith in Mexico’s justice system.

Several sources have said that the United States government agreed to Mexico’s request for the general to be returned because Mexico threatened to end or limit cooperation with the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration.

Announcing the decision to seek the dismissal of the charges faced by Cienfuegos, U.S. Attorney General William Barr and his Mexican counterpart Alejandro Gertz Manero said the two countries remain committed to “bilateral law enforcement cooperation.”

Peña Nieto Bribery Scheme in Odebrecht Case

Former president Enrique Peña Nieto led and personally benefited from a criminal scheme within his government that paid bribes to lawmakers and committed treason, according to the Attorney General’s Office.

The Attorney General’s Office made the allegations in a document that requested a warrant for the arrest of Peña Nieto-era cabinet minister Luis Videgaray in connection with a bribery case involving Brazilian construction company Odebrecht.

President López Obrador said last week that the Attorney General’s Office had sought an arrest warrant for Videgaray but was blocked by a judge.

Obtained by the newspaper Reforma, the Attorney General’s Office document alleges that Peña Nieto, in office from 2012 to 2018, used Videgaray and former Pemex CEO Emilio Lozoya as pawns in the criminal scheme he headed up.

Lozoya was extradited to Mexico from Spain on corruption charges in July and is currently awaiting trial. Videgaray, who served as finance minister and foreign minister in the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) administration led by Peña Nieto, left Mexico at the end of the former government’s term.

The Attorney General’s Office document says that on the orders of Peña Nieto, Videgaray distributed 121.5 million pesos in bribes to former National Action Party (PAN) senators Ernesto Cordero and Jorge Luis Lavalle, former PAN national president and 2018 presidential candidate Ricardo Anaya and former PRI senator David Penchyna Grub.

According to the Attorney General’s Office, the money came from Odebrecht and was used to bribe the lawmakers in exchange for support for the former government’s structural reforms, in particular the energy reform which opened up the sector to foreign and private companies after an almost 80-year state monopoly.

The Attorney General’s Office alleges that the scheme led by Peña Nieto committed treason because the former government’s structural reforms allow foreign companies to benefit from the exploitation of natural resources that are mandated as national property by the Mexican constitution.

The Attorney General’s Office document, which doesn’t request an arrest warrant for the ex-president, says that the alleged crimes of bribery and treason “required considerable logistical and financial resources” because the government had to lobby Odebrecht for money both in Mexico and abroad.

Once the funds were obtained – former Odebrecht executives have admitted to paying some US $10 million to Peña Nieto’s campaign and government – they had to be transferred, converted to Mexican pesos, stored and delivered to lawmakers, the Attorney General’s Office said. Proposals that benefited the Brazilian company also had to be drawn up, it said.

The Attorney General’s Office alleges that the scheme led by Peña Nieto and operated by Videgaray and Lozoya was akin to “a state within a state.”

The former minister and Pemex chief “implemented a policy of acts of corruption,” the Attorney General’s Office said.

Peña Nieto “had his own apparatus of criminal power” with which “he implemented a strategy of co-optation of the will of lawmakers” in order to ensure the approval of his energy reform, the Attorney General’s Office said. The officials to whom he gave orders were “forced” to comply.

Lozoya, who is cooperating with authorities in the hope that he will be acquitted or given a more lenient sentence, told the Attorney General’s Office in a written submission that Peña Nieto and Videgaray led the Odebrecht bribery scheme in which he was involved.

He has admitted to arranging for bribes to be paid to lawmakers but claims that he was coerced by the ex-president and former minister, effectively depicting himself as a victim of their corruption.

Videgaray has rejected Lozoya’s claims, saying in August that they are “false, absurd, inconsistent and reckless.”

He hasn’t publicly responded to the Attorney General’s Office document exposed by Reforma.

Peña Nieto, whose government was plagued by corruption scandals, has disappeared from public life and has not responded to any recent allegations against him. However, the ex-president has previously denied any wrongdoing.

The federal government intends to hold a referendum next year to ask citizens whether past presidents should face justice for crimes they allegedly committed while in office.

Lozoya also implicated former presidents Felipe Calderón and Carlos Salinas in alleged corruption linked to Odebrecht, while López Obrador has informally accused his five most recent predecessors of all manner of corrupt and illicit activities.

US Dollar Peso Exchange Rate

20 Pesos now only worth about one US dollar

20 Pesos now only worth about one US dollar

The US dollar-Mexican peso exchange rate was very stable in 2019!, despite a lack of economic growth and a lot of noise in the news about the financial difficulties of the state-owned oil company Pemex, which could also cause problems for the government’s international credit ratings.

During 2019, the dollar’s low was  $18.75, and its high was $20.15 pesos per dollar, indicating the peso’s stability.

At the end of 2019 the peso closed at $18.90 pesos per dollar; compared to 2018 it closed at $19.66.

All of this seems incredible as when I, Mexicali Maryann, moved to Mexicali eleven years ago, the peso stood at 12.50 to the dollar.

Several things helped to make the peso such a good performing currency against the US dollar in 2019.  Mexico kept to  its budget deficit targets. This was difficult as Mexico’s economy had basically no growth. In addition Mexico had a positive trade balance as exports exceeded imports, something many countries, including the US could not achieve.

Going ahead, the peso will be helped by the ratification of the US, Mexico, Canada trade agreement, USMCA.

Still, even though Mexico is doing well, the exchange rate is expected to end this year at 20 pesos to the dollar. This stability against the dollar is good news not only those doing business with Mexico, but with the tourism sector, as well.

New trade deal USMCA to fuel invasion of Asian manufacturers

Chinese participation in the auto parts sector alone rose 350% in 10 years!

The Unite States Senate overwhelmingly approved a revised North American trade pact, USMCA, in a rare bipartisan vote that hands President Trump a victory on a key campaign promise just as lawmakers are preparing his impeachment trial.

The U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement, or USMCA, passed by a vote of 89-10. The trade pact, signed by the president in November 2018, received a similar bipartisan vote in the House last month.

A statement by the White House press secretary called the measure “another trade win for American workers,” replacing “the job-killing, huge failure NAFTA.”

“USMCA, which the President successfully negotiated over a year ago, re-balances trade between the three countries and will lead to significant economic and job growth in the United States,” the statement said.

As a benefit to Mexico, ratification of the new North America free trade agreement,USMCA, will trigger an invasion of Chinese auto parts manufacturers in Mexico, according to experts.

Ratified also by Mexico in December USMCA stipulates that 75% of automotive content must be made in the three countries in order for a vehicle to qualify for tariff-free status in the region.

That figure is 12.5% higher than that set by the rules of origin under the 25-year-old NAFTA, which will be replaced by the USMCA once all three countries have completed their ratification processes.

The aim of the higher content rule is to reduce the quantity of parts that manufacturers operating in North America use from countries such as China, India, Brazil and eastern European nations. By opening factories in Mexico, Chinese auto part manufactures will be able to circumvent the stricter rule.

Once the USMCA is in effect, Chinese companies will seek to increase the quantity of parts they make in Mexico, said Enrique Dussel, coordinator of the Center for China-Mexico Studies at the National Autonomous University (UNAM).

A number of Chinese auto parts makers have already established operations in Mexico, such as Minth, which supplies Nissan, Ford, Honda, Mazda, Audi, Fiat Chrysler and General Motors. Chinese investment in Mexico’s auto parts sector increased by almost 350% between 2008 and 2018 to just over US $6 billion.

In 2019, Hangzhou XZB Tech opened a new factory in Nuevo León and Minghua started operations in San Luis Potosí.

A supplier of a range of parts to Audi, Ford and General Motors, the former invested US $9 million in a plant in a new industrial park in the municipality of Salinas Victoria, located north of the state capital Monterrey. The company has plans to expand its facility to 20,000 square meters, the newspaper El Universal reported.

Minghua, which supplies BMW from its San Luis Potosí plant, will invest 633 million pesos (US $33.9 million) in a factory in Puebla, El Universal said, to supply parts to Volkswagen and Audi.

In addition, the Zacatecas government has announced the construction of a new industrial park for Chinese auto parts manufacturers and is currently in talks with Guangdong Automotive Component with a view to luring the company to the state.

Arturo Orozco, a professor at the IPADE Business School and director of its auto summit, said the new North American trade deal gives greater certainty to the automotive industry and provides the opportunity to attract more Chinese suppliers to Mexico.

Orozco added that Mexico is also an attractive country in which to make auto parts because wages in China have risen in recent years and continue to rise. Exporting to automakers in the United States from Mexico is easier and cheaper due to the country’s proximity to the U.S. and the trade war between Washington and Beijing.

The president of Mexico’s auto parts industry association INA said that Chinese companies are anxious to start operations in Mexico.

Only the beginning

Given USMCA’s strong beginning, in addition to Chinese automobile manufacturing companies other sectors of industry will follow. The future of Mexico is, in addition to its agricultural and tourist industries, in addition to the automotive sector, other multinational companies in other sectors will set up shop in Mexico.

Ex-Mexican Security Secretary García Arrested in USA

Former Mexican federal security secretary Genaro García Luna has pleaded not guilty to U.S. charges that he colluded with the Sinaloa Cartel in a drug trafficking conspiracy.

García, who led the so-called war on drugs launched by Calderón (and years ago by the USA) shortly after he took office in 2006, was indicted on December 4 by a grand jury in Brooklyn on charges that he allowed the Sinaloa Cartel to operate in exchange for multimillion-dollar bribes. He was detained in Dallas, Texas, on December 9 2019.

Mexico’s head of security in the government of former president Felipe Calderón entered his plea on Friday during a brief appearance in federal court in Brooklyn, New York. The case is U.S. v. Garcia Luna, 19-cr-00576.

The once high-ranking Mexican official will remain locked up at least until a bail hearing to be held as soon as Jan. 21, U.S. Magistrate Judge Peggy Kuo said. Prosecutors on Friday said they’d challenge any future request for bail, citing Garcia Luna’s wealth and connections to the cartel.

Garcia Luna, who moved to Miami in 2012, became a target for U.S. prosecutors after a former Sinaloa cartel leader testified about his alleged involvement at El Chapo’s trial last year in Brooklyn. El Chapo was sentenced to life in prison. Garcia Luna was indicted by a federal grand jury on Dec. 4, 2019 and arrested days later in Dallas.

Federal prosecutors say Garcia Luna cleared the way for multi-ton shipments of cocaine and other drugs into the U.S. In addition to his cabinet-level position under President Felipe Calderon, Garcia Luna also served as the first head of Mexico’s Federal Investigation Agency when it was created in 2001.

The former official’s assistance was so crucial in facilitating large drug shipments into the U.S. that Sinaloa operatives twice personally delivered to him briefcases filled with $3 million to $5 million in cash, the U.S. said.

After his move to Miami, Garcia Luna allegedly lied about his past criminal conduct on a 2018 naturalization application, the U.S. said.

The 51-year-old, who prior to serving as public security secretary, headed up the now-defunct Federal Investigation Agency, allegedly provided the cartel with security that allowed it to freely move drugs to the northern border and supplied confidential information about government investigations and other criminal organizations.

The U.S. indictment said that Sinaloa Cartel bagmen personally delivered payments on two occasions to García using briefcases that contained between US $3 million and $5 million.

Former Sinaloa Cartel operations chief Jesús Zambada said at drug lord Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzmán’s New York trial last year that he personally gave García US $6 million in the mid-2000s.

United States prosecutors also said that the former official lied about his past criminal involvement when he applied for U.S. citizenship in 2018.

Dressed in khaki pants and a baggy gray sweatshirt, García appeared to be suffering from the strain of his almost month-long imprisonment during his 10-minute appearance in court.

His face was drawn and his demeanor submissive, as he constantly turned around to look in the direction of his wife and two children who were seated in the second row of a packed courthouse. Maybe he and his family understand that he is facing the same sentence as El Chapo – a life imprisoned under solitary confinement.

García shook his head as the charges against him – three counts of cocaine-trafficking conspiracy and a false declarations charge – were read out by prosecutors.

Judge Peggy Kuo said he will remain in custody unless a court accepts a proposal for bail. Prosecutors said that they would oppose any such request because García’s wealth and alleged cartel links make him an extremely high flight risk.

Another procedural hearing was set for January 21, 2020 after which García will have a period of 70 days within which he may choose to change his plea. If convicted, García faces a prison sentence of between 10 years and life in solitary confinement.

In Mexico, federal financial investigators are looking into the possible embezzlement of more than 4.8 billion pesos (US $250 million) in federal funds to companies with links to García. Former president Calderón has denied any knowledge of the alleged criminal activities of his security secretary.

President López Obrador, who blames Mexico’s ongoing violence problems on the security strategy first implemented by the Calderón administration, said on December 18 that his government wouldn’t investigate the ex-president in relation to the charges against his security secretary “because it would create the perception that we’re doing it for political purposes.” It’s more likely that Obrador lives a life of terror under Mexico’s drug cartels, who are in virtual control of Mexico.

El Chapo’s tunnels live on

Former Sinaloa Cartel leader Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzmán may be out of the picture but his tunnel-building legacy lives on.

The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) reports that El Chapo’s tunnels are still commonly used for drug smuggling in the border towns in which the cartel operates, such as Tijuana, Mexicali and Nogales.

The most recent tunnel discovery was made by the U.S. Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) on December 19, 2019. It crossed the border from Nogales, Sonora, into Río Rico, Arizona.

The U.S. government named it Tunnel 125, the number being the running count of functioning tunnels discovered since 1990. Another 119 unfinished tunnels have also been discovered since then.

In the three years since El Chapo’s arrest, U.S. border forces have found 35 passageways, primarily in Baja California and Sonora, the route the Sinaloa Cartel has used since the 1990s.

All the tunnels discovered in Mexicali, Tijuana and Tecate are first class with lighting, ventilation, electric elevators and steel rails for the carts used to move drugs.

Discovered in April 2016, the longest tunnel seized so far ran 800 meters from Tijuana to San Diego, according to California officials.

Nogales is considered the cradle of drug tunnels, as U.S. border forces discover an average of one per month there, either in use or under construction.

On August 23, 2018, a tunnel task force operated by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) discovered a tunnel running from a fast food restaurant near Yuma, Arizona, to a house in San Luis Río Colorado, Sonora. The owner of the Arizona property was arrested for possession of US $1 million worth of methamphetamines, cocaine, heroin and fentanyl.

U.S. Army engineers will design technology to detect tunnels this coming year and the U.S. Congress has approved the $2 million the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) requested for the project.

In a speech to the U.S. Senate in April, Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) special agent Timothy J. Tubbs said the corrupting ability of the cartels is extensive and has its tentacles in both Mexico and the United States.

Tubbs said the primary drug-running organizations are the of Sinaloa, Jalisco New Generation and Zetas cartels, whose sourcing operations extend as far as Asia.

Tubbs also said that DHS deployed 1,700 special agents and 180 intelligence research specialists on the U.S.-Mexico border in response to the smuggling.

In 2018, HSI investigations led to 4,562 criminal arrests, 3,523 indictments, 3,173 convictions and 153 administrative immigration arrests.

Tubbs praised the collaborative relationship between the two countries in its ability to take down targets such as “El Chapo” Guzmán.

“Mexico has proven to be an outstanding partner in the fight against [transnational criminal organizations], taking down the cartels’ top leadership and helping in efforts to dismantle these organizations,” he said.

Tunnel master Guzmán, whose most famous project was the 1.5-kilometer tunnel that led him to freedom from the Altiplano penitentiary in México state in 2015, is serving a life sentence in Colorado after being convicted in July on drug, murder and money laundering charges.

Will El Chapo tunnel out of the Colorado prison, just like he did in Mexico?

Stay tuned…

Mexico Travel Advisory: Level 2: Exercise increased caution, December 17, 2019

Learn Spanish

Exercise increased caution in Mexico due to crime and kidnapping. Some areas have increased risk. Read the entire Travel Advisory.

Violent crime – such as homicide, kidnapping, carjacking, and robbery – is widespread.

The U.S. government has limited ability to provide emergency services to U.S. citizens in many areas of Mexico, as travel by U.S. government employees to certain areas is prohibited or significantly restricted.

U.S. government employees may not travel between cities after dark, may not hail taxis on the street, and must rely on dispatched vehicles, including from app-based services like Uber or from regulated taxi stands. U.S. government employees may not drive from the U.S.-Mexico border to or from the interior parts of Mexico, with the exception of daytime travel within Baja California, between Nogales and Hermosillo on Mexican Federal Highway 15D, and between Nuevo Laredo and Monterrey on Highway 85D.

Read the Safety and Security section on the country information page.

Do Not Travel To:

  • Colima state due to crime.
  • Guerrero state due to crime.
  • Michoac?n state due to crime.
  • Sinaloa state due to crime.
  • Tamaulipas state due to crime and kidnapping.

Reconsider Travel To:

  • Chihuahua state due to crime.
  • Coahuila state due to crime.
  • Durango state due to crime.
  • Jalisco state due to crime.
  • Mexico state due to crime.
  • Morelos state due to crime.
  • Nayarit state due to crime.
  • Nuevo Leon state due to crime.
  • San Luis Potosi state due to crime.
  • Sonora state due to crime.
  • Zacatecas state due to crime.

For detailed information on all states in Mexico, please see below.

If you decide to travel to Mexico:

  • Keep your traveling companions and family back home informed of your travel plans. If separating from your travel group, send a friend your GPS location. If taking a taxi alone, take a photo of the taxi number and/or license plate and text to a friend.
  • Use toll roads when possible and avoid driving alone or at night. In many states, police presence and emergency services are extremely limited outside the state capital or major cities.
  • Exercise increased caution when visiting local bars, nightclubs, and casinos.
  • Do not display signs of wealth, such as wearing expensive watches or jewelry.
  • Be extra vigilant when visiting banks or ATMs.
  • Enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) to receive Alerts and make it easier to locate you in an emergency.
  • Follow the Department of State on Facebook and Twitter.
  • Review the Crime and Safety Reports for Mexico.
  • Prepare a contingency plan for emergency situations. Review the Traveler’s Checklist.

Aguascalientes state – Level 2: Exercise Increased Caution

Exercise increased caution due to crime.

There are no restrictions on travel for U.S. government employees.

Baja California state – Level 2: Exercise Increased Caution

Exercise increased caution due to crime.

Criminal activity and violence occur throughout the state. Particularly notable is the number of homicides in non-tourist areas of Tijuana. Most homicides appeared to be targeted; however, criminal organization assassinations and turf battles can result in bystanders being injured or killed.

Due to poor cellular service and hazardous road conditions, U.S. government employees may only travel on Highway 2D between Mexicali and Tijuana during daylight hours.

There are no additional restrictions on travel for U.S. government employees in Baja California, which includes tourist areas in: Ensenada, Rosarito, and Tijuana.

Baja California Sur state – Level 2: Exercise Increased Caution

Exercise increased caution due to crime.

Criminal activity and violence occur throughout the state, including in areas frequented by U.S. citizens. Bystanders have been injured or killed in shooting incidents related to criminal organization turf battles. Petty crime occurs frequently in tourist areas.

There are no restrictions on travel for U.S. government employees in Baja California Sur, which includes tourist areas in: Cabo San Lucas, San Jose del Cabo, and La Paz.

Campeche state – Level 2: Exercise Increased Caution

Exercise increased caution due to crime. Police presence and emergency response are extremely limited outside of the state capital.

There are no restrictions on travel for U.S. government employees in Campeche state, which includes tourist areas in: Campeche City, Calakmul, Edzna, and Palizada.

Chiapas state – Level 2: Exercise Increased Caution

Exercise increased caution due to crime.

There are no restrictions on travel for U.S. government employees in Chiapas state, which includes tourist areas in: Palenque, San Cristobal de las Casas, and Tuxtla Gutierrez.

Chihuahua state – Level 3: Reconsider Travel

Reconsider travel due to crime.

Violent crime and gang activity are common. The vast majority of homicides are targeted assassinations against members of criminal organizations. Battles for territory between criminal groups have resulted in violent crime in areas frequented by U.S. citizens and U.S. government employees, including restaurants and malls during daylight hours. Bystanders have been injured or killed in shooting incidents.

U.S. government employees may only travel to the following locations within the state of Chihuahua and with the noted restrictions:

  • Ciudad Juarez: They may travel at any time to the area of Ciudad Juarez bounded to the east by Bulevar Independencia; to the south by De los Montes Urales/Avenida Manuel J Clouthier/Carretera de Juarez; to the west by Via Juan Gabriel/Avenida de los Insurgentes/Calle Miguel Ahumada/Francisco Javier Mina/Melchor Ochampo; and to the north by the U.S.-Mexico border.

Additionally, direct travel to the Ciudad Juarez airport and the factories (maquilas) located along Bulevar Independencia and Las Torres is permitted. Travel to the factory and cattle inspection station in San Jeronimo is permitted only through the United States via the Santa Teresa port of entry; travel via Anapra is prohibited.

  • Chihuahua City: Employees may travel at any time to the area of Chihuahua City bounded to the north by Avenida Transformaci?n; to the east by Avenida Tecnol?gico/Manuel G?mez Morin; to the west by the city limit boundary; and to the south by Route 16/Calle Tamborel.

U.S. government employees may only travel from Ciudad Juarez to Chihuahua City during daylight hours via Highway 45, with stops permitted only at the Federal Police station, the overlook, the border inspection station at KM 35, and the shops and restaurants on Highway 45 in the town of Villa Ahumada.

Additionally, travel is permitted to factories (maquilas) outside this area via the most direct route. Direct travel to Abraham Gonzales International Airport is also permitted.

  • Nuevo Casas Grandes Area (including Nuevo Casas Grandes, Casas Grandes, Mata Ortiz, Colonia Juarez, Colonia LeBaron, and Paquime): U.S. government employees may only travel to the Nuevo Casas Grandes area during daylight hours through the United States, entering Mexico at the Palomas Port of Entry on New Mexico Route 11 before connecting to Mexico Highway 2 to Nuevo Casas Grandes. Employees are permitted to stay overnight in the cities of Nuevo Casas Grandes and Casas Grandes only.
  • Ojinaga: U.S. government employees must travel to Ojinaga via U.S. Highway 67 through the Presidio, Texas Port of Entry.
  • Palomas: U.S. government employees must travel to Palomas via U.S. highways through the Palomas Port of Entry in Columbus, New Mexico.

Mexican authorities in Chihuahua occasionally operate at a heightened level of security, sometimes referred to as “Alerta Roja” (Red Alert). During those periods, U.S. government personnel must receive prior approval and exercise increased caution when visiting Mexican law enforcement offices or installations.

Travel by U.S. government employees to all other areas of the state of Chihuahua, including Copper Canyon, is prohibited.

Visit our website for Travel to High-Risk Areas.

Coahuila state – Level 3: Reconsider Travel

Reconsider travel due to crime.

Violent crime and unpredictable gang activity are common in parts of Coahuila state.

Travel for U.S. government employees is limited to the following areas with the noted restrictions:

  • Piedras Negras and Ciudad Acu?a: U.S. government employees must travel directly from the United States and observe a midnight to 6:00 a.m. curfew in both cities.
  • Highway 40 and areas south within Coahuila state.

U.S. government employees may not travel to other areas of Coahuila.

Visit our website for Travel to High-Risk Areas.

Colima state – Level 4: Do Not Travel

Do not travel due to crime.

Violent crime and gang activity are widespread.

U.S. government employees may not travel to:

  • Tecoman
  • Within 20 km of the Colima/Michoacan border
  • Highway 110 from the town of La Tecomaca to the Jalisco border

In Manzanillo, U.S. government employees are limited to the tourist and port areas.

Visit our website for Travel to High-Risk Areas.

Durango state – Level 3: Reconsider Travel

Reconsider travel due to crime.

Violent crime and gang activity are common in parts of Durango state.

U.S. government employees may not travel to the area west and south of Highway 45.

Visit our website for Travel to High-Risk Areas.

Guanajuato state – Level 2: Exercise Increased Caution

Exercise increased caution due to crime.

Gang-related violence occurs in Guanajuato, primarily in the south of the state, near the border with Michoac?n. This violence is often linked to the organized theft of petroleum and natural gas from the state oil company and other suppliers.

There are no restrictions on travel for U.S. government employees.

Guerrero state – Level 4: Do Not Travel

Do not travel due to crime.

Crime and violence are widespread. Armed groups operate independently of the government in many areas of Guerrero. Members of these groups frequently maintain roadblocks and may use violence towards travelers.

U.S. government employees may not travel to the entire state of Guerrero, including Acapulco, Zihuatanejo, Ixtapa, and Taxco.

Visit our website for Travel to High-Risk Areas.

Hidalgo state – Level 2: Exercise Increased Caution

Exercise increased caution due to crime.

There are no restrictions on travel for U.S. government employees.

Jalisco state – Level 3: Reconsider Travel

Reconsider travel due to crime.

Violent crime and gang activity are common in parts of Jalisco state. In metropolitan Guadalajara, battles for territory control between criminal groups take place in areas frequented by U.S. citizens. Shooting incidents between criminal groups have injured or killed innocent bystanders.

U.S. government employees may not travel to:

  • Within 20 km (12 miles) of the Jalisco/Michoac?n border, south of Route 120
  • Highway 80 south of Cocula
  • Highway 544 from Mascota to San Sebastian del Oeste

There are no restrictions on travel for U.S government employees to: Guadalajara Metropolitan Area, Riviera Nayarit (including Puerto Vallarta), Chapala, and Ajijic.

Visit our website for Travel to High-Risk Areas.

Mexico City – Level 2: Exercise Increased Caution

Exercise increased caution due to crime.

Both violent and non-violent crimes occur throughout Mexico City. Use additional caution outside of the frequented tourist areas where police and security patrol more routinely, particularly at night. Petty crime occurs frequently in both tourist areas and non-tourist areas.

There are no restrictions on travel for U.S. government employees.

Mexico state (Estado de Mexico) – Level 3: Reconsider Travel

Reconsider travel due to crime.

Both violent and non-violent crimes are common throughout Mexico state. Use caution in areas outside of the frequented tourist areas, although petty crime occurs frequently in tourist areas as well.

There are no restrictions on travel for U.S government employees.

Visit our website for Travel to High-Risk Areas.

Michoac?n state – Level 4: Do Not Travel

Do not travel due to crime.

Crime and violence are widespread in Michoac?n state. Travel for U.S. government employees is limited to the following areas with the noted restrictions:

  • Highway 15D: U.S. government employees may travel on Federal Toll Highway (cuota) 15D to transit the state between Mexico City and Guadalajara.
  • Morelia: U.S. government employees may travel by air and by land using Highways 43 or 48D from Highway 15D.
  • Lazaro Cardenas: U.S. government employees must travel by air only and limit activities to the city center or port areas.

Visit our website for Travel to High-Risk Areas.

Morelos state – Level 3: Reconsider Travel

Reconsider travel due to crime.

Violent crime and gang activity are common in parts of Morelos state.

There are no restrictions on travel for U.S. government employees.

Visit our website for Travel to High-Risk Areas.

Nayarit state – Level 3: Reconsider Travel

Reconsider travel due to crime.

Violent crime and gang activity are common in parts of Nayarit state. U.S. government employees may not travel to:

  • Tepic
  • San Blas

There are no restrictions on travel for U.S government employees to: Riviera Nayarit (including Nuevo Vallarta, Punta Mita, and Bahia de Banderas), and Santa Maria del Oro.

Visit our website for Travel to High-Risk Areas.

Nuevo Leon state – Level 3: Reconsider Travel

Reconsider travel due to crime.

Violent crime and unpredictable gang activity are common in parts of Nuevo Leon state. There are no restrictions on travel for U.S. government employees.

Visit our website for Travel to High-Risk Areas.

Oaxaca state – Level 2: Exercise Increased Caution

Exercise increased caution due to crime.

U.S. government employees may not travel to:

  • Isthmus region of Oaxaca, defined by Highway 185D to the west, Highway 190 to the north, and the Oaxaca/Chiapas border to the east. This includes the towns of Juchitan de Zaragoza, Salina Cruz, and San Blas Atempa.
  • Highway 200 northwest of Pinotepa.

There are no restrictions on travel for U.S. government employees to other parts of Oaxaca state, which include tourist areas in: Oaxaca City, Monte Alban, Puerto Escondido, and Huatulco.

Puebla state – Level 2: Exercise Increased Caution

Exercise increased caution due to crime.

Gang-related violence occurs in Puebla state, and is often linked to the organized theft of petroleum and natural gas from the state oil company and other suppliers.

There are no restrictions on travel for U.S. government employees.

Queretaro state – Level 2: Exercise Increased Caution

Exercise increased caution due to crime.

There are no restrictions on travel for U.S. government employees.

Quintana Roo state – Level 2: Exercise Increased Caution

Exercise increased caution due to crime.

Criminal activity and violence, including homicide, occur throughout the state. Most homicides appear to be targeted; however, criminal organization assassinations and turf battles between criminal groups have resulted in violent crime in areas frequented by U.S. citizens. Bystanders have been injured or killed in shooting incidents.

There are no restrictions on travel for U.S. government employees in Quintana Roo state, which include tourist areas in: Cancun, Cozumel, Isla Mujeres, Playa del Carmen, Tulum, and the Riviera Maya.

San Luis Potosi state – Level 3: Reconsider Travel

Reconsider travel due to crime.

Violent crime and unpredictable gang activity are common in parts of San Luis Potosi state. There are no restrictions on travel for U.S. government employees.

Visit our website for Travel to High-Risk Areas.

Sinaloa state – Level 4: Do Not Travel

Do not travel due to crime.

Violent crime is widespread. Criminal organizations are based and operating in Sinaloa state.

Travel for U.S. government employees is limited to the following areas with the noted restrictions:

  • Mazatlan: U.S. government employees may travel by air or sea only. U.S. government employees are limited to the Zona Dorada and historic town center, and must use direct routes when traveling to and from those locations and the airport and cruise terminals.
  • Los Mochis and Topolobampo: U.S. government employees may travel by air or sea only. U.S. government employees are restricted to the city and the port, and must use direct routes when traveling between these locations and to and from the airport.

Visit our website for Travel to High-Risk Areas.

Sonora state – Level 3: Reconsider Travel

Reconsider travel due to crime.

Sonora is a key location used by the international drug trade and human trafficking networks.

U.S. government employees traveling to and from Hermosillo may travel between the border crossing points of DeConcini and Mariposa in Nogales only during daylight hours and only on Highway 15, including stops at restaurant/restroom facilities along Highway 15.

U.S. government employees may travel to Puerto Pe?asco via the Lukeville/Sonoyta crossing during daylight hours on Federal Highway 8, or by using Federal Highway 15 south from Nogales and east via Federal Highway 2 and State Highway 37 through Caborca during daylight hours. U.S. government employees may also travel directly from the nearest U.S. Ports of Entry to San Luis Rio Colorado, Cananea, and Agua Prieta but may not go beyond the city limits without official Consulate Nogales clearance.

U.S. government employees may not travel to:

  • The triangular region west of the Mariposa Port of Entry, east of Sonoyta, and north of Altar
  • The district within Nogales that lies to the north of Avenida Instituto Tecnologico and between Periferico (Bulevar Luis Donaldo Colosio) and Corredor Fiscal (Federal Highway 15D), and the residential areas to the east of Plutarco Elias Calles.
  • The eastern edge of the state of Sonora, which borders the state of Chihuahua: all points along that border east of Federal Highway 17, the road between Moctezuma and Sahuaripa, and State Highway 20 between Sahuaripa and the intersection with Federal Highway 16.
  • All points south of Federal Highway 16 and east of Highway 15 (south of Hermosillo), as well as Empalme, Guaymas, and all points south, including Obregon and Navojoa. U.S. government employees may travel to Alamos by air only and may not go beyond the city limits.

In addition, U.S. government employees may not use taxi services in Nogales.

Visit our website for Travel to High-Risk Areas.

Tabasco state – Level 2: Exercise Increased Caution

Exercise increased caution due to crime.

There are no restrictions on travel for U.S. government employees.

Tamaulipas state – Level 4: Do Not Travel

Do not travel due to crime and kidnapping.

Organized crime activity – including gun battles, murder, armed robbery, carjacking, kidnapping, forced disappearances, extortion, and sexual assault – is common along the northern border and in Ciudad Victoria. Criminal groups target public and private passenger buses as well as private automobiles traveling through Tamaulipas, often taking passengers hostage and demanding ransom payments. Heavily armed members of criminal groups often patrol areas of the state in marked and unmarked vehicles and operate with impunity particularly along the border region from Reynosa northwest to Nuevo Laredo. In these areas, local law enforcement has limited capability to respond to crime incidents. There are greater law enforcement capabilities in the tri-city area of Tampico, Ciudad Madero, and Altamira, which has a lower rate of violent criminal activity compared to the rest of the state.

U.S. government employees may only travel within a limited radius between the U.S. Consulates in Nuevo Laredo and Matamoros and their respective U.S. Ports of Entry. U.S. government employees may not travel between cities in Tamaulipas using interior Mexican highways and they must observe a curfew between midnight and 6:00 a.m. in the cities of Matamoros and Nuevo Laredo. U.S. government employees can travel between Nuevo Laredo and Monterrey only during daylight hours on Highway 85D.

Visit our website for Travel to High-Risk Areas.

Tlaxcala state – Level 2: Exercise Increased Caution

Exercise increased caution due to crime.

There are no restrictions on travel for U.S. government employees.

600% Tourism Growth Overwhelms Baja Beach

A Baja California Sur beach has been overwhelmed by growth of more than 600% in visitor numbers over the past six years, prompting authorities to prepare a new management plan that includes charging people to access the protected coastal area.

Located only 20 kilometers from the state capital La Paz, Balandra has been described as the most beautiful beach in Mexico, and it seems many would agree.

Its promotion by state tourism authorities and travel agencies as well as photos and videos of the beach on social media and popular blogs have caused visitor numbers to explode.

“When we started visiting and studying Balandra 30 years ago, there was no tourism,” the state director of the Natural Protected Areas Commission (Conanp), told the newspaper Milenio.

“In 2013, we had 28,000 visitors and we’ll end this year with 200,000,” Benito Bermúdez Almada predicted, which would be a 614% increase.

He said that as many as 2,000 people a day visit the beach.

The massive tourism spike has placed a significant strain on Balandra, the main beach with its own parking lot; Balandra 2, where an iconic mushroom-shaped rock is located; and seven other beaches in the 2,500-hectare protected area.

Too many people in the water is an potential problem.

The good news is that recent testing showed that the water was still well within recommended standards, but one official says, “it’s close to the limit . . . We don’t want to let it get out of hand.”

To mitigate the problem, state and municipal authorities are planning to provide improved washrooms and other sanitary facilities.

Other measures to provide better protection of the beaches will be an increase in the number of park rangers from three to 12 and a ban on vendors from entering the beach. Also planned is an admission fee of 36 pesos, about $2.00, per person per day to enter Balandra Beach.

Balandra Beach is the place to go!

Juicio de El Chapo: el ex presidente mexicano Peña Nieto aceptó un soborno de $ 100 millones, dice un testigo

El ex presidente de México, Enrique Peña Nieto, recibió un soborno de $ 100 millones de Joaquín Guzmán Loera, el infame señor del crimen conocido como El Chapo, según un testigo en el juicio del Sr. Guzmán.

Alex Cifuentes Villa, un narcotraficante colombiano que trabajó estrechamente con el Sr. Guzmán entre el 2007 y el 2013, cuando el jefe del gobierno se escondió de la ley en una serie de ranchos remotos en la Sierra Madre montañas.

“Señor. ¿Guzmán pagó un soborno de $ 100 millones al presidente Peña Nieto? ”Jeffrey Lichtman, uno de los abogados del Sr. Guzmán, preguntó al Sr. Cifuentes durante el interrogatorio.

“Sí”, dijo el señor Cifuentes.

El Sr. Guzmán puede ofrecer más detalles pronto. Poco después de que el jurado fue excusado alrededor de las 4:30 p.m. El martes, el Sr. Lichtman presentó el nombre de su cliente a la fiscalía como posible testigo de la defensa, confirmando que el narcotraficante podría declarar en su propio juicio.

El Sr. Lichtman dijo que agregar el nombre del Sr. Guzmán a la lista de testigos no garantiza que testificará. Es simplemente “posible”.

“Si no lo incluyera en la lista, posiblemente excluiría la posibilidad de que testificara”, dijo Lichtman en una entrevista. “Entonces, solo estaba siendo inclusivo”.

El testimonio del Sr. Guzmán sería un avance sorprendente. Si bien sus lugartenientes han compartido detalles sobre las operaciones del cártel de Sinaloa, el propio capo podría ofrecer información aún más íntima, como por ejemplo, cómo posiblemente sobornó a un presidente de México.

Según el Sr. Cifuentes, el Sr. Peña Nieto contactó al Sr. Guzmán por primera vez cuando fue elegido presidente a fines de 2012, y le pidió al señor de las drogas 250 millones de dólares a cambio de cancelar una persecución a nivel nacional por él.

Pero el Sr. Guzmán hizo una contraoferta, agregó el Sr. Cifuentes, diciendo que le daría al Sr. Peña Nieto solo $ 100 millones.

 “¿El mensaje fue que el Sr. Guzmán no tuvo que permanecer escondido?”, Preguntó el Sr. Lichtman.

“Sí”, dijo el Sr. Cifuentes, “eso es lo que me dijo Joaquín”.

El Sr. Lichtman, citando las notas del Sr. Cifuentes de una entrevista que dio a las autoridades estadounidenses en 2016, preguntó si Felipe Calderón, quien precedió al Sr. Peña Nieto como presidente de México, aceptó un soborno en 2008 de uno de los rivales del Sr. Guzmán, el Beltrán. -Leyva hermanos.

“No recuerdo muy bien este incidente”, respondió el Sr. Cifuentes. Agregó momentos después: “En este momento, no recuerdo eso”.

El Sr. Peña Nieto y el Sr. Calderón no pudieron ser contactados para hacer comentarios.

Después de testificar sobre los dos presidentes, el Sr. Cifuentes recitó otros sobornos que el Sr. Guzmán y sus aliados habían pagado a los funcionarios mexicanos. En al menos dos ocasiones, dijo, el capo le dio al ejército mexicano entre $ 10 millones y $ 12 millones para lanzar operaciones para “matar o capturar” a los asociados de los hermanos Beltrán-Leyva durante su guerra con ellos.

El Sr. Cifuentes también dijo que la policía federal mexicana no solo hizo la vista gorda ante el narcotráfico, sino que ocasionalmente tomó parte en él. Una vez, dijo a los jurados, los traficantes le dieron a la policía fotografías de varias maletas llenas de cocaína que fueron enviadas por el cartel en un avión desde Argentina a México. La policía recogió las maletas del reclamo de equipaje, dijo el Sr. Cifuentes, y vendió las drogas ellos mismos.

Todo esto se produjo en el agotador segundo día del Sr. Cifuentes como testigo en el juicio del Sr. Guzmán. Él ya ha confesado a una asombrosa variedad de crímenes.

En el estrado, el Sr. Cifuentes admitió haber tramado un complot fallido de asesinato con los Ángeles del Infierno en Canadá. Reconoció haber comprado explosivos plásticos a la viuda de un narcotraficante hondureño. Dijo que pagó a un juez en Ecuador $ 500,000 para desechar el caso de un oficial militar ecuatoriano acusado de trabajar con el cartel, y agregó que luego ayudó a secuestrar al oficial cuando parecía que estaba engañando al Sr. Guzmán.

Hubo insultos insinuantes de que los principales líderes mexicanos podrían haber sido comprometidos por dinero sucio desde el inicio del juicio en noviembre. En su declaración de apertura, el Sr. Lichtman afirmó que su cliente había sido enmarcado durante años por una conspiración tramada por su socio, Ismael Zambada García, en liga con agentes de drogas estadounidenses “torcidos” y un gobierno mexicano “completamente corrupto”, incluidos dos de sus miembros. presidentes

En ese momento, el Sr. Peña Nieto y el Sr. Calderón emitieron declaraciones llamando a las acusaciones falsas. El juez del caso, Brian M. Cogan, luego advirtió al Sr. Lichtman contra las promesas al jurado de que las pruebas en el caso no lo respaldarían.

Luego, cuando terminó la primera semana del juicio, los abogados del Sr. Guzmán informaron al juez Cogan en una conferencia lateral que un testigo próximo, Jesús Zambada García, hermano de Ismael Zambada, declararía, si se le preguntaba, que los presidentes mexicanos habían aceptado sobornos. Del cártel de la droga de Sinaloa.

Pero el juez Cogan prohibió el testimonio, citando la vergüenza que causaría a “individuos y entidades” anónimos que no estaban directamente involucrados en el caso.

El martes, sin embargo, el juez Cogan permitió que el Sr. Cifuentes diera testimonio sobre lo que sabía sobre sobornos a los presidentes mexicanos con solo unas pocas interrupciones.

En un momento dado, al ser interrogado por el Sr. Lichtman, el Sr. Cifuentes reconoció que su asistente personal, Andrea Velez Fernández, había trabajado para un consultor político, J.J. Rendón, quien fue contratado por la campaña presidencial del Sr. Peña Nieto. El Sr. Cifuentes dijo que la Sra. Vélez le había enviado una vez fotografías de “maletas llenas de efectivo”.

Cuando el Sr. Lichtman preguntó si las maletas estaban “destinadas al Sr. Peña Nieto”, los fiscales objetaron por su relevancia.

“De acuerdo”, dijo el juez Cogan.

Después de eso, no hubo más discusión de las maletas.