More fallout from the War On Drugs, in Mexico.
March 18, 2012 6:32 PM Subscribe
In Mexico, extortion is a booming offshoot of drug war.
'From mom-and-pop businesses to mid-size construction projects to some of Mexico's wealthiest citizens, almost every segment of the economy and society has been subjected to extortion schemes, authorities and records indicate. Even priests aren't safe. Extortionists have shut entire school systems, crippled real estate developments, driven legions of entrepreneurs into hiding or out of the country.'
'Extortion has grown as the largest drug-trafficking cartels consolidate power, leaving many of the smaller groups searching for new sources of revenue.'
'Genaro Garcia Luna, the nation's public safety secretary and head of the federal police, said his officers have investigated 283,000 extortion complaints since the drug war was launched in December 2006. But that's not the full extent of the problem. Experts say probably two-thirds of extortion cases aren't reported to authorities.'
'The number of Mexican businessmen transplanting themselves, and often their businesses, to the United States has grown enormously in the last five years, as measured by so-called investment visas issued by the U.S. government to wealthy Mexicans, and by the millions of dollars those Mexicans are investing in new enterprises north of the border.
Businesses' flight represents a serious blow to Mexico's struggling economy, in terms of lost investment, lost tax revenue and lost jobs.'