Timeline Mexico 1970-1997
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1970 Nov 6, Augustin Lara (b.1897), Mexican composer, died. At the time of his death, Lara had written more than 700 songs.
1970 Dec 1, In Mexico Pres. Luis Echeverria succeeded Gustav Diaz Ortaz and continued to 1976. He began with populist approach and later devalued the peso, starting a tradition of currency instability and economic crises.
(WSJ, 12/5/95, p.A-14)(WSJ, 8/13/97, p.A12)
1970 Work began in Cancun, Mexico, to develop a tourist attraction.
(SFEC, 5/17/98, p.T10)
1970 In Mexico under the rule of Luis Echeverria the military launched the so-called "Friendship Operation" in Guerrero. A 2006 report said there was evidence the army conducted "illegal searches, arbitrary detentions, torture, the raping of women in the presence of their husbands, and the possible extrajudicial executions of groups of people."
1970 Mexico overhauled its labor code.
(Econ, 11/3/12, p.37)
1970s The government expropriated thousands of acres of ejido (collective) land nationwide to promote tourism and other development.
(SFC, 1/31/97, p.A14)
1971 Mar, Mexican fisherman Rudesindo Cantarell took geologists of Petroleos Mexicanos to an site where oil impacted his nets. The Cantarell field turned out to be one of the largest offshore oil fields ever found. In 2006-2006 production fell 20% as the reserve declined.
(WSJ, 4/5/07, p.A1)
1971 Jun 10, In Mexico City a paramilitary group descended on student demonstrators and at least 11 people were killed. In 2002 criminal complaints were filed against 14 former federal and Mexico City officials for their involvement in the massacre. Mayor Alfonso Martinez (d.2002 at 81) denied any involvement in the massacre that left over 30 protestors dead. In 2004 charges were filed against former Pres. Echeverria, but a judge blocked his arrest.
(SFC, 6/13/02, p.A14)(SFC, 11/9/02, p.A19)(SFC, 7/24/04, p.A3)(WSJ, 7/26/04, p.A1)
1971 Aug 18, Joel David Kaplan (44), a NY businessman and Carlos Antonio Contreras Castro, a Venezuelan counterfeiter, escaped by helicopter from Mexico’s Santa Maria Acatitla Federal Prison. Vasilios Basil Choulos (d.2003), SF lawyer, plotted out the helicopter jailbreak. Kaplan was allegedly framed and serving 28 years for murder in the Mexican prison. The successful break led to the book "Ten-Second Jailbreak" and the 1975 film "Breakout."
(SFC, 1/21/02, p.A21)(www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,909935,00.html)
1971 The documentary film "Walls of Fire" by Herbert Kline was about Mexican artists Diego Rivera and David Alfaro Siqueiros (d.1974).
(SFC, 2/13/99, p.A24)
1972 Oct 6, In Saltillo, Mexico, a 22-car train carrying 2,000 religious pilgrims derailed and caught fire. 208 people were killed.
(SFC, 6/4/98, p.A15)(AP, 2/18/04)
1972 Mexico’s National Fund for Worker’s Housing was created.
(Econ, 8/28/04, p.33)
1972 Jose Kahn, a Chilean-born US citizen, opened Metales & Derividos in Tijuana. The plant smelted old US car and boat batteries. In 1987 it was told to clean up its waste. In 1994 it was closed following years of ineffective warnings.
(WSJ, 1/16/02, p.A12)
1972 In Mexico after guerrillas ambushed and killed 18 troops, the army detained at least 90 men in the village of El Quemado and took many of them to 3 different military bases that served as "concentration camps." A 2006 government report on Mexico’s “dirty war” said 7 of the men died from being tortured.
1973 Aug 28, More than 600 people died as an earthquake shook central Mexico.
1973 Peasants in Baja (Mexico) formed a cooperative called the Ejido Coronel Estaban Cantu and leased lots to developers, residents and retirees who built expensive homes other structures. In 1999 officials tried to carry out an eviction notice in favor of the original landowners. In 2000 the Supreme Court ruled in favor of several private companies, including Purua Punta Estero SA, and began evicting US retirees.
(SFEC, 11/21/99, p.A23)(SFC, 10/31/00, p.A12)
1973 In Mexico the New Jerusalem community was founded in Michoacan state by Nabor Cardenas, "Papa Nabor," a defrocked parish priest who said it was based on messages from the Virgin Mary relayed by an illiterate old woman. The renegade Catholic priest objected to the abandonment of Latin masses and other modernization moves.
1974 Jan 6, David Alfaro Siqueiros (b.1896), Mexican artist (muralist), died. His work included the 1933 mural "Ejercicio Plastico" (Plastic Exercise), completed in Argentina at the home of newspaper magnate Natalio Botana (d.1941). In 1994 the 650-square-foot work fell into a legal limbo.
(SFC, 2/13/99, p.A24)(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/David_Alfaro_Siqueiros)
1974 Aug 25, In Mexico Rosendo Radilla, a guerrilla sympathizer and folk singer, disappeared after being stopped at an army checkpoint near Acapulco. In 2009 the Inter-American Court of Human Rights ordered the government to apologize, pay damages to relatives and investigate the case. Mexico’s Interior Department apologized on Nov 17, 2011. Three unsuccessful attempts were made to find Radilla's remains at a former army base in Guerrero state.
1974 Sep 18, Hurricane Fifi struck Honduras with 110 mph winds and killed about 8,000. The hurricane made landfall as a Category 2 storm in Belize on the next day, and continued through Guatemala and Mexico as a tropical system. After weakening to a depression, Fifi emerged into the Pacific Ocean, becoming the first crossover storm since Hurricane Irene-Olivia in 1971.
1974 Dec 2, Lucio Cabanas, leader of a communist rebel group called the Party of the Poor, was killed in a shootout with Mexican soldiers. In 2002 his remains were found in a makeshift grave in Atoyac de Alvarez, a city outside a major military base near the Pacific coast resort of Acapulco. Lino Rosas Perez and Esteban Mesino Martinez were killed along with Cabanas, in a gunbattle with authorities in the village of Otatal in southern Guerrero state. Perez and Martinez were identified in 2006 using DNA evidence.
(AP, 8/13/02)(AP, 11/15/06)
1974 The book "Palinuro of Mexico" by Fernando del Paso (b.1935) won the Premio de Mexico in manuscript form but was not published in Mexico until 1980. The 1st edition was published in Spain in 1977.
(SFEC, 10/6/96, BR p.4)(www.complete-review.com/reviews/pasofd/palinuro.htm)
1974 Quintana Roo became a state of Mexico.
(SFEC, 5/16/99, p.T4)
1974 The first hotel in Cancun opened with 72 rooms.
(SFEC, 5/17/98, p.T10)
1975 Jan 2, Ken Brugger, searching on behalf of Canadian entomologist Dr. Fred A. Urquhart, found that vast numbers of monarch butterflies, wintered at Cerro Pelon, an inactive volcano a hundred miles west of Mexico City. Urquhart had been tagging butterflies and searching for their winter quarters since 1954. In 1986 the Mexican government established some protection over 5 sites where monarchs were known to overwinter.
(ON, 4/07, p.12)
1975 Apr 18, Jesus Ibarra Piedra, a member of a Mexican leftist urban guerrilla group, was kidnapped and never seen again. On Nov 8, 2004, Juventino Romero Cisneros, a former agent of the Federal Security Directorate, was arrested for the kidnapping. Carlos Solana Macias, ex-director of the Judicial Police for the northern state of Nuevo Leon, was arrested Dec 29, 2005. In 2006 both Cisneros and Solano were released from prison.
(AP, 10/9/04)(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rosario_Ibarra_de_Piedra)(AP, 5/21/06)
1975 Oct 20, Mexico City's 1st major subway accident took 20 lives.
1975 The first UN Women’s Conference was held in Mexico City.
(SFEC, 6/11/00, p.A27)
1976 Juan Jose Arreola (d.2001), nationalist author, won the National Linguistics and Literature Prize. His books included "La Feria" (1962).
(SFC, 12/5/01, p.A23)
1976 The peso was devalued and caused a financial crises.
(WSJ, 12/20/96, p.A17)
1976 The world’s last major oil field, yielding over a million barrels a day, was found in Mexico.
(WSJ, 6/28/05, p.D8)
1976-1982 In Mexico Jose Lopez Portillo served as president. It was an era marked by anti-guerrilla campaigns, ultra-nationalist foreign policies, and state-dominated protectionist economics.
(SFC, 11/28/98, p.C2)
1977 In Merida the governor’s residence reopened as the Museum of Anthropology and History.
(SSFC, 5/6/01, p.T6)
1977 Sinaloa, Mexico, became about this time the birthplace of Mexican drug smuggling.
(SFEC, 3/2/97, p.A14)
1977 Sister Antonia Brenner (50), an American nun born as Mary Clark in Los Angeles, moved into Mexico’s La Mesa State Penitentiary, just across the border from San Diego, to provide aid to prisoners.
1978 Jun, The FBI confronted anthropologist Gilberto Lopez y Rivas of Mexico as a spy for the Soviet Union. Agents were tipped by US Army Sgt. Joseph Cassidy, who spent some 20 years as a double agent. In 2000 David Wise authored "Cassidy’s Run." In 1997 Rivas was elected to Mexico’s Congress.
(SFC, 4/8/00, p.C1)
1978 Oct 18, Jaume Ramon Mercader del Rio Hernandez (b.1914), aka Jacques Mornard, Spanish Communist and murderer of Leon Trotsky, died in Cuba. Declassified archives showed that he was a Soviet agent. In 1940 Mercader fatally wounded Trotsky with an ice axe in his study at his home in Coyoacan, then a village on the southern fringes of Mexico City.
1978 A Mexico City utility worker found a stone slab that lay 15 feet below street level. He had discovered the Aztec capital of Tenochtitlan. The ruins appeared to be those of the capital's great pyramid, the Templo Mayor.
1979 Jun 3, Ixtoc 1, an exploratory oil well in the Gulf of Mexico, blew and spilled an estimated 3.3 million barrels of oil by March 1980.
(SFC, 11/20/02, p.A14)(Econ, 5/8/10, p.69)
1979 Oct 31, A US DC-10, flown by Western Airlines, crashed at Mexico City when it struck a vehicle and 74 were killed.
1979 Pennsylvania Prof. William T. Sanders (d.1008 at 82) authored “The Basin of Mexico: Ecological Processes in the Evolution of a Civilization.” He wrote the book following an aerial survey with colleagues Jeffrey R. parsons and Robert S. Santley.
(SFC, 7/18/08, p.B10)
1979 The village of Nueva Jerusalem in Michoacan was founded by ex-communicated Catholic priest, Nabor Cardenas. Six years earlier a peasant woman claimed to have seen the Virgin Mary there. Nabors ran the village as a cult to the virgin told villagers that the PRI was the party of the Holy Virgin.
(SFEC, 8/9/98, p.A18)
1980 Jan 25, A US-Mexico Extradition Treaty, signed by Pres. Carter in 1978, went into effect. It allowed Mexico to refuse extradition of suspects facing the death penalty in the US.
1980 Dec 28, Mexico ended a bilateral fishing agreement with US in a dispute over tuna.
1980 A US-Mexico Extradition Treaty allowed Mexico to refuse extradition of suspects facing the death penalty in the US.
(SSFC, 8/10/03, p.A1)
1980-1989 US bottlers of Coca-Cola switched from cane sugar to high-fructose corn syrup in the 1980s to cut costs. Mexican bottlers continued to use cane sugar.
(WSJ, 1/11/06, p.A1)
1981 Jul-Aug, Some $9 billion in capital leaked out of Mexico due to falling oil prices, the collapse of the peso, and a foreign debt of $80 billion and rising.
(Econ, 3/6/04, p.77)
1981 Pronatura, a Mexican non-governmental conservation organization, was founded. One of its projects was to monitor bird migration through southern Mexico.
(NH, 10/96, p.50)
1981 Mexican crude oil peaked at $38.50 a barrel.
(Econ, 3/6/04, p.77)
1982 Feb 18, Mexico devalued the peso by 30 percent to fight an economic slide.
1982 Mar 24, In Mexico a fire burned down the National Film Archive.
1982 Jul 4, Miguel de la Madrid Hurtado (b.1934) was elected president of Mexico. Madrid was chosen by Pres. Portillo as his successor. De la Madrid took office in a year when inflation had surpassed 100 percent and Mexico had a foreign debt of $87 billion, much of it short-term.
(SFC, 11/28/98, p.C2)(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Miguel_de_la_Madrid)(AP, 3/9/04)
1982 Aug 20, In Washington, DC, Mexican Secretary of Finance, Jesus Silva Herzog, declared that “Mexico did not have means to pay its due foreign debt and thus his Country was assuming a moratorium.” US Fed Chairman Paul Volcker immediately established a severe control upon money flow and practically the immobilization of domestic or external credits. The crisis lasted 1,717 days. Volcker lent money to Mexico and arranged a moratorium on repayment of bank loans.
(http://tinyurl.com/37xdmy)(WSJ, 8/30/07, p.A3)
1982 Aug 22, Alfonso Portillo, a Guatemalan professor at Mexico’s Guerrero Autonomous Univ., shot and killed 2 political adversaries outside a party. In 1999 Portillo ran as a presidential candidate for the Guatemalan Republican Front and said he had acted in self defense.
(SFC, 9/8/99, p.A15)(http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_hb3335/is_200001/ai_n8048120)
1982 Sep 1, Mexico’s President Lopez Portillo nationalized the private banks. There was an economic catastrophe that has been labeled the Mexican debt crisis. Mexicans sent hundreds of millions of dollars abroad amid devaluations and bank nationalization.
1982 Nov 10, The IMF lent Mexico $3.8 billion due to threatened bankruptcy. The Mexican economy began to be run under the guidance of the World Bank and the Int’l. Monetary Fund.
(SFC, 9/16/96, p.A21)
1982 Mexico’s oil market collapsed.
(WSJ, 8/22/97, p.A10)
1982-1990 Raul Salinas was an official of Conasupo, a state-owned foodstuffs distributor and commodities trader.
(WSJ, 6/25/96, p.A11)
1983 Mar 18, Mexico's financial crisis was causing a surge of illegal aliens over the border into Texas.
1983 The La Paz Treaty was signed whereby the US and Mexico agreed to reduce pollution within 60 miles of their common frontier
(SFC, 10/10/98, p.A8)
1983 In Mexico Jesus Leon (17) co-founded CEDICAM, the Center for Integral Small Farmer Development of the Mixtec.
(SSFC, 4/13/08, p.A4)
1983-1988 Manuel Bartlett Diaz was the Interior Minister and oversaw the Federal Security Directorate (DFS).
(WSJ, 3/5/97, p.A16)
1984 Nov 19, Near Mexico City, Mexico, 5 million liters of liquefied butane exploded at a storage facility killing some 500 people.
(HSAB, 1994, p.46)(AP, 11/19/07)
1984 William Flanagan, head of Arriba Ltd., signed a deal with Mexico’s Petroleum Worker’s Union for at least 6 million barrels of slop oil. The union failed to deliver and Flanagan won a suit in 1986. The judgement ballooned to nearly $250 million in 2002 with still no settlement.
(WSJ, 2/20/02, p.A1)
1985 Feb 7, US drug agent Enrique “Kiki” Camarena Salazar was tortured and killed at a house in Guadalajara in the presence of a half-dozen top Mexican officials. Mexican authorities found his body on March 6 at a ranch east of Guadalajara. In 1992 Ruben Zuno Arce, the brother-in-law of former president Luis Echeverria, was convicted and sentenced to life in prison. In 1989 Miguel Angel Felix Gallardo was arrested for complicity in the murder along with drug charges and sentenced to 40 years in prison. In 2000 Gallardo received a 2nd 40-year sentence for smuggling and bribery.
(WSJ, 3/5/97, p.A1)(SFC, 4/20/00, p.A10)(SFC, 8/12/00, p.A11)
1985 Mar 6, In Mexico authorities found the body of kidnapped US drug agent Enrique Camarena Salazar and a Mexican pilot at a ranch east of Guadalajara.
1985 Sep 19, The Mexico City area was struck by the first of two devastating quakes (8.1) that officially claimed 9,500 lives. Some 40,000 people were injured.
(HFA, '96, p.38)(SFC, 12/31/96, p.C9)(AP, 9/19/97)(SSFC, 4/16/06, p.F4)
1985 Sep 22, Earthquake struck Mexico, 2,000 killed. [see Sep 19]
1985 Mexico’s military opened its Museum of Drugs.
(SFC, 1/15/10, p.A5)
1985 Samuel Joaquin Flores succeeded in getting his Light of the World evangelical church affiliated with the National Confederation of Popular Organizations, an umbrella body for PRI-linked political groups.
(SFC, 2/19/98, p.A10)
1985 The Mexican environmental organization Group of 100 was founded.
(SFC, 3/13/99, p.A14)
1985 Albert Radelat (32) and John Walker (36), US tourists, were tortured and killed by drug traffickers in Guadalajara. In 2001 Ernesto Fonseca Carrillo was sentenced to 30 years in prison for the torture slayings.
(SFC, 5/5/01, p.D2)
1986 Jun 19, Argentina beat West Germany 3-2 in soccer's 13th World Cup in Mexico.
1986 Jun, In Mexico Gustavo Petricioli Iturbe was named treasury secretary by Pres. Miguel de la Madrid. The foreign debt was near $100 billion due to the collapse of oil prices earlier in the decade.
(SFEC, 10/11/98, p.D10)
1986 The Sian Ka'an Biosphere on the Punto Piedra peninsula in Quintana Roo was created by a presidential decree.
(SFEC, 5/16/99, p.T6)
1987 Nov, In Mexico the peso was devalued and caused the 3rd financial crises since 1976.
(WSJ, 12/20/96, p.A17)(www.dallasfed.org/research/eclett/2006/el0606.html)
1987 Virginia Reade Belmontez (d.1998 at 68) authored "Mexico Barbarro 1987," a book that exposed the past of Mexico’s Pres. Salinas and his party’s oppression of the Mexican people.
(SFC, 11/7/98, p.C2)
1987 PRI chairman Munoz Ledo led a political split from the PRI party and helped form the PRD.
(SFC, 9/2/97, p.A7)
1987 Ricardo Salinas Pliega became president of his family-founded Grupo Elektra. He transformed it into a major retailer.
(WSJ, 12/8/05, p.A11)
1987 Julio Baldenegro, a Mexican-Indian leader who opposed logging in Tarahumara mountains of northern Mexico, was killed. His unsolved murder marked the beginning of a wave of killings.
1988 Feb 13, President Reagan and Mexican President Miguel de la Madrid met in the Mexican resort of Mazatlan.
1988 Apr 20, Hector Felix, a muckraking Mexican journalist, was murdered. He had dubbed Jorge Hank, owner of the Tijuana Agua Caliente Racetrack, as “the Abominable Snowman” for a reputed cocaine habit.
(SSFC, 8/5/07, p.A15)(www.elandar.com/back/fall99/gato.html)
1988 Jul 6, In Mexican elections the PRI declared itself the early winner without an official vote count. The true results of the election were never made public. Gortari, candidate for the ruling Institutional Revolutionary Party, was losing badly to opposition candidate Cuauhtemoc Cardenas.
1988 Jul 7, The candidate of Mexico's ruling party, Carlos Salinas de Gortari, claimed a "national victory" one day after presidential elections that opponents charged were riddled by fraud.
1988 Jul 10, Opposition party activists in Mexico blocked a bridge linking their country to the United States, charging that Mexico's recent presidential election was marked by widespread fraud.
1988 Sep 14, Hurricane "Gilbert" slammed into Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula after forcing thousands of residents to flee.
1988 Sep 15, Thousands of coastal residents from Mexico to Louisiana were fleeing to higher ground, a day after Hurricane Gilbert pounded the Yucatan Peninsula.
1988 Sep 16, Hurricane Gilbert slammed into the Mexico coast for the second time in three days, its center sweeping ashore north of La Pesca, 120 miles south of Brownsville, Texas.
1988 Nov 22, Louis Barragan (b.1902), considered the most important Mexican architect of the 20th century, died in Mexico City. A 1996 book: "Barragan: The Complete Works" focuses on 119 works and projects.
(SFEM, 9/22/96, p.36)(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Luis_Barrag%C3%A1n)(WSJ, 9/1/07, p.P12)
1988 Dec 1, Carlos Salinas de Gortari was sworn in as president of Mexico. He succeeded Pres. Miguel de la Madrid. One of his first acts was to turn Agualeguas, the lost family patrimony, into his official retreat.
(WSJ, 2/8/96, p.A-6)(SFC, 9/2/97, p.A7)(AP, 12/1/98)
1988 Dec 11, Sixty-two people were killed when tons of illegal fireworks exploded in a Mexico City marketplace.
1988 The Miguel Agustin Pro Human Rights Center was founded to support peasants and Indians in Guerrero, Oaxaca and Chiapas.
(SFC, 11/24/99, p.C2)
1988 The government privatized Masa, Mexicana de Autobuses SA.
(WSJ, 8/7/96, p.A10)
1988 The Democratic Revolutionary Party (PRD) was founded. [see 1989]
(WSJ, 12/11/96, p.A18)
1988 Hurricane Gilbert devastated the Yucatan peninsula and left 225 people dead.
(SFC, 10/10/97, p.A15)
1988-1992 Dante Delgado was Governor of the oil-rich Gulf-coast state of Veracruz. He was jailed in 1996 for amassing a $57 million fortune while in office.
(SFC, 12/19/96, p.C5)
1988-1994 Carlos Salinas was president of Mexico. His secretary, Justo Ceya, was ordered to be arrested in 1998 on charges that he illegally amassed a fortune while in office.
(SFC, 4/8/97, p.A6)(SFC, 7/23/98, p.A10)
1989 Aug 9, A train fell into the San Rafael River after a bridge collapsed, killing 112 people.
1989 Nov, In Mexico Jose Madariaga joined Raul Salinas and TV exec Abraham Zabludovsky in buying Mexicana de Autobuses SA, a bus manufacturing company, for $4.4 million.
(WSJ, 8/7/96, p.A10)
1989 The Democratic Revolutionary Party (PRD) was founded.
(SFC, 3/25/02, p.A9)
1989 Mexico City officials expropriated a 745-acre chunk of land on Mexico City's gritty east side to build low-income housing. In 2003 Mayor Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador defied a court order to pay $160 million for the expropriation.
1989 Carlos Peralta (chairman of Grupo Iusacell SA) received a lucrative government cellular concession that gave him the key franchise in Mexico City and three surrounding states.
(WSJ, 1/30/96, p.A-11)
1989 Raul Salinas under the name of Juan Guillermo Gomez Gutierrez approached the Swiss Pictet Bank to open an account. News also surfaced that Jose Madariaga Lomelin, chairman of BBV Probursa SA, a banking group, and Abraham Zabludovsky, an executive with Grupo Televisa SA, invested in a bus manufacturing company with Raul Salinas.
(WSJ, 6/7/96, p.A11)
1989 Pres. Carlos Salina jailed the union boss of the Oil Worker’s Union (STPRM) and slashed the number of workers to 139,022 from 210,000.
(WSJ, 6/14/96, p.A15)
1989 Ernesto Zedillo as a Cabinet secretary granted a $7 mil payment to Maseca, a corn-flour maker, run by Roberto Gonzalez Barrera, a close friend of Pres. Carlos Salinas. It was supposed to be compensation money for government failure to pay subsidies in the late 1980s, although 16 mil was paid in 1988.
(SFC, 7/6/96, p.A10)
1989 Gerardo de Prevoisin led an investor group in the buyout of Aeromexico. In 1994 he was forced out as chairman and in 1996 was accused of embezzling $72 mil.
(WSJ, 7/1/96, p.A6)
1989-1990 Javier Coello Trejo served as deputy attorney general and was the first drug czar under Pres. Carlos Salinas de Gortari.
(SFC, 2/19/96, p.A11)
1989-1994 Pres. Carlos Salinas de Gortari led a private autobahn spending spree that built 3,600 miles of superhighways at a cost of $15 billion. Drivers avoided the toll roads and the projects faced financial collapse. Public sector bailout was required.
(WSJ, 4/4/97, p.A9)
1990 Oct 11, Octavio Paz was named the winner of the Nobel Prize for literature, the first Mexican writer so honored.
(SFC, 4/20/98, p.A17)(AP, 10/11/00)
1990 Mexico created a National Human Rights Commission.
(Econ, 2/16/08, p.44)
1990 Mexican physician Humberto Alvarez Machain was abducted by operatives of the US government. He had been indicted in LA for involvement in the 1985 kidnapping and murder of US drug agent Enrique Camarena. Machain was later acquitted. In 2001 a US federal appeals court ruled that the abduction violated an int’l. human rights law.
(SFC, 9/13/01, p.C2)
1990 In Mexico Telefonos de Mexico (Telmex) was privatized.
(WSJ, 8/7/96, p.A10)
1990 Compartamos was established in Mexico as a non-profit group to make small, uncollateralized business loans to the poor (microcredit).
(Econ, 3/17/07, p.84)
1990 Manuel Moreno Rivas (b.1909), founder of Sinaloa’s El Debate newspaper, sold it.
1990 Carlos Hank Rhon won a concession for an independent cellular license in western Mexico. He paid $10 million for the right with BellSouth of Atlanta as a partner.
(WSJ, 11/1/96, p.A6)
1990 The Laguna Verde nuclear power plant near Xalapa in Veracruz state opened under popular protests. By 1997-1998 issues of corruption, mismanagement and disregard for safety regulations plagued the plant.
(SFC, 1/12/98, p.A10)
1990-1992 Raul Salinas was a consultant at the anti-poverty agency known as Sedesol.
(WSJ, 11/1/96, p.A6)
1991 Jun 24, Rufino Tamayo (b.1899), a Zapotecan Indian artist born in the Mexican state of Oaxaca, died in Mexico City. His painting “Tres Personajes,” sold in 1977 to a Houston couple for $55,000, was stolen in 1987. In 2003 it was found amongst street trash on Manhattan’s Upper West Side.
(SFC, 10/24/07, p.E3)(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rufino_Tamayo)
1991 Dec 14, President Bush and Mexican President Carlos Salinas de Gortari, meeting at Camp David, Md., renewed their commitment to conclude quickly the North American Free Trade Agreement.
1991 The Mexican banks were reprivatized.
(WSJ, 4/1/96, p.A-10)
1991 Mexico shut down an oil refinery in Mexico City. It was said to have belched out 7$ of the city’s air pollution.
(Econ, 7/31/10, p.27)
1991 The city of Tuxtla Gutierrez in Chiapas state opened Zona Galactica, a sector for controlled prostitution.
(SFEC, 8/20/00, p.A14)
1991 Miguel Aleman Velasco, billionaire from Veracruz State, sold his stake in the media giant Televisa before entering the Senate. His eldest son Miguel Aleman Magnani quickly purchased a new stake.
(WSJ, 11/19/96, p.A18)
1991 Carlos Enrique Cervantes de Gortari, cousin of Pres. Carlos Salinas, lost his job at the National Institute of Nuclear Investigations following a scandal of misused funds.
(WSJ, 4/15/97, p.A15)
1991 Telmex was privatized and sold to Carlos Slim Helu, a stockbroker and the richest man in Latin America. Telmex was sheltered from competition for 6 years and in 2002 controlled 96% of local phone service.
(WSJ, 10/23/98, p.A1)(WSJ, 5/16/02, p.A1)
1991-1995 The Publico newspaper reported in 1998 that Jalisco state officials had shifted almost $20 million out of accounts meant for charity and that at least $7 million went into PRI coffers during this period.
(SFC, 6/6/98, p.A11)
1992 Feb, The Sada family won a bid for Grupo Financiero Serfin SA, a big banking firm that was being privatized by the government of Carlos Salinas. Mr. Sada also around this time received a $15 mil payment from Raul Salinas to be used for some business venture that Sada said was not used and that the funds were returned to Raul Salinas.
(WSJ, 7/8/96, p.A6)
1992 Apr 22, In Guadalajara, Mexico, more than 200 people were killed by a series of sewer explosions.
1992 Raul Salinas and Carlos Hank Rhon set up an appointment with Citibank private banker Amy Elliot in New York to establish an account with Citibank for Mr. Salinas.
(WSJ, 11/1/96, p.A1)
1992 May, A 2nd meeting took place between Ms. Elliot and Raul Salinas, this time in Mexico City, to establish an investment program that would move funds of Mr. Salinas outside of Mexico.
(WSJ, 11/1/96, p.A6)
1992 Jun, The first deposit to Mr. Raul Salinas’ Trocca account came from Mr. Hank. The amount was for $2 million that Mr. Hank supposedly owed Mr. Salinas after a cellular-phone business deal did not work out.
(WSJ, 11/1/96, p.A6)
1992 Aug 11, In Washington, D.C., negotiators for the United States, Canada and Mexico continued to work out final details of the proposed North American Free Trade Agreement.
1992 Aug 12, The North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) was announced in Washington, D.C. after 14 months of negotiations between the United States, Mexico and Canada. It created the world's wealthiest trading bloc.
(AP, 8/12/97)(HN, 8/12/02)
1992 Oct 7, Trade representatives of the United States, Canada and Mexico initialed the North American Free Trade Agreement during a ceremony in San Antonio, Texas.
1992 Dec 17, President Bush, Canadian Prime Minister Brian Mulroney and Mexican President Carlos Salinas de Gortari signed the North American Free Trade Agreement in separate ceremonies.
1992 James Michener wrote his novel "Mexico" and "My Lost Mexico."
1992 Mexico’s Finance Minister Pedro Aspe finally cut off government funding of the PRI party late in 1992.
(WSJ, 4/19/96, p.A-11)
1992 Pres. Carlos Salinas de Gortari signed into law a reform of Article 27 of the Mexican Constitution dismantling reform provisions that called for land redistribution to the poor.
(SFEC, 1/4/98, BR p.4)
1992 Magdalena Ruiz Pelayo was convicted of drug trafficking in Newark New Jersey. From 1982 she had worked as the private secretary to Raul Salinas Lozano, father Pres. Carlos Salinas. She later told US authorities that Salinas Lozano was a leading figure in narcotics dealings that also involved his son, Raul, and his son-in-law, Jose Francisco Ruiz Massieu (assassinated in 1994).
(SFC, 2/26/97, p.A6)
1992 Carlos Cabal Peniche led a group of several leading Mexican agricultural families in the purchase of Fresh Del Monte from Polly Peck Int’l. PLC after the British conglomerate collapsed.
(WSJ, 6/12/96, p.A13)
1992 Servando Ramirez, a social activist, was murdered in Novalato. Jorge Aguirre Meza was appointed special prosecutor to investigate. Meza eventually swore out a murder warrant against Rios Felix.
(SFEC, 2/28/99, p.A18)
1992-1994 Bank records showed that Raul Salinas de Gortari made more than 150 cash deposits totaling $80 million in the Mexico City branch Banca Cremi.
(WSJ, 5/30/97, p.A1)
1992-1994 The Fund for Bank Savings Protection (Fobaproa) was set up. It was used to absorb bad loans as the country’s banks were being privatized.
(SFC, 8/3/98, p.A13)
1992-2000 Environmental groups say wealthy landowners and power brokers, profiting from logging Mexico’s Petatlan Sierra, destroyed 40 percent of 558,000 acres of woodland, some of the worst deforestation on the planet. In 2005 after a month-long blockade by peasants, Boise Cascade canceled contracts for massive cutting operations in the Petatlan mountains, citing supply problems, and 15 logging permits were revoked. Since then at least a dozen peasant leaders have been targeted. Some have been arrested and jailed on what are widely seen as bogus charges engineered by political and economic interests profiting from logging. Others have gone into hiding and some have been killed.
1993 Apr 20, Mario Moreno (81), Mexican comedian known as Cantinflas, died in Mexico City. His films included "Around the World in 80 Days."
1993 May 24, Juan Jesus Posada Ocampo (66), Roman Catholic Cardinal, and six other people were killed at the Guadalajara, Mexico, airport in what was described as a shootout involving drug gangs. Gunmen of the four Arellano Felix Brothers murdered Ocampo apparently mistaking him for a rival drug lord. Drug cartel leader Hector Luis Palma was charged and sentenced in connection to the killing on Jan 3, 1997. In 1998 members of a San Diego street gang were indicted as hired hit men in the slayings that left 7 dead. In 2005 a court sentenced Humberto Rodriguez Banuelos, a former police commander, to 40 years in prison for his role in the murders. In all, 12 gunmen, including Rodriguez, were convicted and sentenced in the attack on the cardinal. In 2008 Araujo Avila, an alleged drug cartel hit man, was arrested in Tijuana in relation to Ocampo’s murder.
(WSJ, 10/7/96, p.A16)(SFC, 1/9/96, p.A12)(SFC, 2/11/98, p.A3)(AP, 5/24/98)(AP, 12/9/05)(AP, 1/27/08)
1993 May, Mr. Raul Salinas began sending out large quantities of money into his New York concentration account with Citibank. He was afraid the unstable markets and the possibility of a peso devaluation.
(WSJ, 11/1/96, p.A6)
1993 Jun, Raul Salinas married Paulina Castanon.
(WSJ, 11/1/96, p.A6)
1993 Jul, Ricardo Salinas Pliego won a privatization auction of Mexico’s government-run TV Azteca with a bid of $643 million. It later emerged that he had borrowed nearly $30 million from Raul Salinas, the brother of then-Pres. Carlos Salinas (no relation), prompting some to question whether the sale had been rigged.
(WSJ, 8/7/96, p.A10)(WSJ, 12/8/05, p.A11)
1993 Aug 11, Pope John Paul II visited Mexico.
1993 Aug 13, Negotiators for the US, Canada and Mexico announced they had resolved side issues concerning the proposed North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).
1993 Sep 9 - 1993 Sep 14, Hurricane Gert caused 76 deaths. It affected Mexico, Honduras, Costa Rica, and Nicaragua.
1993 Sep, Raul Salinas lent $29.8 mil for 6 years at 12% to Ricardo Salinas Pliego to buy TV Azteca, Mexico’s 2nd largest network, from the government for $669 mil.
(SFC, 7/9/96, p.D1) (WSJ, 8/7/96, p.A10)
1993 Nov 22, Mexico's Senate overwhelmingly approved the North American Free Trade Agreement.
1993 Dec, Mario Ruiz Massieu, deputy attorney general from 1993-1994, opened an account at the Texas Commerce Bank and began to deposit cash that eventually totaled some $9 million.
(SFEC, 3/16/97, p.A14)
1993 Mexico created its Federal Competition Commission (CFC), an antitrust agency.
(WSJ, 4/21/02, p.A12)
1993 In Mexico Rogelio Montemayor was elected governor of Coahuila state.
(WSJ, 6/16/99, p.A1)
1993 Gen’l. Jose Francisco Gallardo called for the creation of a human rights ombudsman within the military. He was jailed in 1993 and court-martialed in 1998 on charges of corruption, destroying files and using army funds for personal use. he was sentenced to an additional 14 years in prison for illegal enrichment after failing to demonstrate the origin of 1.2 million pesos in his bank accounts. Gallardo was freed by Pres. Fox in 2002.
(SFC, 3/31/98, p.B3)(SFC, 4/13/98, p.A14)(SFC, 2/8/02, p.A12)
1993 Mexico’s PRI held a secret meeting with 30 major industrialists who committed a total of $750 million to finance the presidential campaign in 1994.
(WSJ, 4/19/96, p.A-11)
1993 In Mexico Joaquin Guzman Loera (aka "El Chapo"), head of the Sinaloa cartel, was arrested. In 2001 he escaped from the maximum-security prison in Jalisco state.
(Econ, 9/18/10, p.105)
1993 Raul Salinas and Jose Madariaga cashed out of their investment in Mexicana de Autobuses SA for $36 million.
(WSJ, 8/7/96, p.A10)
1993 Mexico’s Carlos Peralta closed a 1.04 billion deal for a 42% investment from Bell Atlantic Corp. of the US.
(WSJ, 1/30/96, p.A-11)(WSJ, 8/7/96, p.A10)
1993 In Mexico El Barzon, which means "The Yoke," began as a farm movement opposed to high interest rates on loans. It was founded by Maximiano Barbosa.
1993 In Mexico’s Baja the San Ignacio Lagoon and Laguna Ojo de Liebre were deemed a Natural World Heritage Site. The area was a spawning site for gray whales.
(SFEM, 5/7/00, p.8)
1993-1994 In 1998 Adrian Carrera Fuentes, former director of the Mexican Federal Judicial Police, was allowed to travel to the US to testify. In Houston he told a grand jury that he had collected nearly $2 million in drug bribes in 1993-1994 and turned the money over to Mario Ruiz Massieu, who fled Mexico in 1995.
(SFC, 7/15/98, p.A8)
1993-2001 An estimated 300 sex killings of young women took place in the Juarez area along the US border, across from El Paso. In 2002 Lourdes Portillo, filmmaker, completed a documentary on the killings: "Senorita Extraviada" (Missing Young Women).
(SFC, 3/11/99, p.A12)
1994 Jan 1, Some 2,000 Zapatista guerrillas under the leadership of Subcommander Marcos rose up against the government in the state of Chiapas. The Zapatista National Liberation Army launched a rebellion to press for better living conditions for Indian peasants in Chiapas.
(SFC, 7/2/96, p.A8)(SFC,12/18/97, p.C2)(AP, 1/1/99)
1994 Jan 12, After an initial hard line, the government agreed to a cease-fire with the Zapatista rebels.
1994 Jan, Poor Maya farmers staged an uprising at the Lancandon rain forest near Palenque, Mexico.
(SFC, 5/19/96, T-9)
1994 Mar 2, The government of Mexico and Indian rebels reached a tentative accord on most insurgent demands for the ending the rebellion, including sweeping political reforms.
1994 Mar 23, The ruling party's pres. candidate, Luis Donaldo Colosio, was murdered while campaigning in Tijuana, Mexico. Mario Aburto Martinez later confessed to shooting Colosio twice and was sentenced to a 45-year sentence. The events were later examined by Sebastian Rotella in his book: "Twilight on the Line: Underworlds and Politics at the US-Mexican Border."
(WSJ, 12/5/95, p.A-14)(SFC, 4/18/96, p.a-13)(SFC, 8/8/96, p.A8)(SFEC, 1/25/98, BR p.9)
1994 Mar 29, Mexico's ruling party picked Ernesto Zedillo to be its new presidential candidate, replacing the assassinated Luis Donaldo Colosio.
1994 Jun 11, A car bomb blew up outside a luxury hotel in Guadalajara, Mexico, killing five people in an apparently drug-related attack.
1994 cJun, Carlos Peralta claimed in Jan of 1996 to have given Raul Salinas 50 mil at this time to help set up an investment fund. He said that 20 other prominent Mexicans contributed.
(WSJ, 1/30/96, p.A-11)
1994 Aug 21, Mexico held its presidential election, which was won by Ernesto Zedillo.
1994 Aug, Federal police bodyguard Raul Macias passed 2 cash filled suitcases to the car trunk of Mario Ruiz Massieu, a deputy attorney general. The drug money was received from police commander Jesus David Grajeda Lara (d.12/95).
(SFC, 3/13/97, p.A14)
1994 Sep 28, In Mexico Jose Francisco Ruiz Massieu, the No. 2 man of the governing Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) was murdered. Raul Salinas de Gortari was later arrested and accused of masterminding the murder. Manuel Munoz Rocha, a federal congressman, disappeared after the 9/28/94 slaying of Ruiz Massieu. Prosecutors later said that Salinas and Rocha conspired to kill Massieu. Raul Salinas was convicted in 1999.
(WSJ, 4/15/96, p.A-15)(SFC, 10/10/96, p.A12)(SFC, 1/22/99, p.A10)
1994 Nov, In the tiny oil state of Tabasco the government party spent $38.8 million to win the elections. Roberto Madrazo won over leftist opponent Andres Lopez Obrador. The money spent was 38 times the legal spending limit and $37 million more than the campaign declared. The population of Tabasco is only 1.5 mil. Paul Karam, later identified as a money laundering suspect with links to banker Carlos Cabal Peniche, contributed some 12.4 million pesos to the ruling party trust fund. Peniche in 1999 said he donated $25 million to the PRI.
(SFC, 6/8/96, p.A10) (WSJ, 6/11/96, p.A12)(SFC, 6/4/99, p.D2)
1994 Dec 1, Pres. Carlos Salinas de Gortari left office. Within weeks speculators began to attack the overvalued peso.
(SFEC, 6/13/99, p.A13)
1994 Dec, New owners of Radio 13 in Mexico City switched to an all-talk format. By 1997 there were 7 AM stations on an all-talk format.
(SFEC, 4/20/97, p.A14)
1994 US Prof. Stanton L. Catlin (d.1997 at 82) shared a Grammy Award for the book "Mexico: Its Culture Life in Music and Art," that was accompanied by a Columbia Records Legacy Collection on Mexican music. He helped the Mexican national university compile record of Mexican murals.
(SFC, 11/29/97, p.A21)
1994 The Westin Regina hotel was built in San Jose del Cabo in Baha, Mexico. It was the most expensive Mexican hotel at the time.
(SSFC, 2/6/05, p.F8)
1994 In Chiapas, Mexico, Maya farmers organized into the Zapatista National Liberation Army.
(SFC, 5/19/96, T-10)
1994 The Mexican government started peace negotiations with the Zapatistas.
1994 Mexico joined the Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).
(WSJ, 8/10/05, p.A9)
1994 Mexican banker Carlos Cabal Peniche after being accused of an elaborate self-lending scheme involving hundreds of million of dollars through his two banks, Banco Union SA and Banca Cremi SA, fled the country. He was also a large investor in southeastern Mexico and maintained a banana plantation in Tabasco.
(WSJ, 6/11/96, p.A12)
1994 In Mexico the Union for the Social Wellbeing of the Triqui Region (UBISORT) was set up by the ruling PRI party to enforce its authority in the mountains of Oaxaca. It fought the Movement for the Unification and Struggle (MULT) resistance group.
(Econ, 8/7/10, p.36)
1994 In Mexico the Tlachinollan Center was founded in the town of Tlapa de Comonfort by Abel Barrera Hernandez to fight to give voice to members of the many indigenous communities in Guerrero whose rights are often overlooked and abused.
1994 Del Monte entered into an ill-fated agreement to sell the company for $1 billion to an investment group led by Mexican banker Carlos Cabal Peniche, who was later charged with fraud by the Mexican government.
(SFC, 3/1/97, p.B1)
1994 Rigoberto Gaxiola Medina was indicted on marijuana trafficking charges by a federal grand jury in Detroit. Some 183 million dollars were identified in his banking accounts but by Jan 23, 1997 only 16.7 million was seized by Mexican officials. The family had large legitimate holdings in Sonora.
(WSJ, 4/1/97, p.A15)
1994 Alfredo Harp Helu, president of Banamex, was kidnapped. He was ransomed after 3 months for $30 mil. Angel Losada Moreno, head of Mexico’s largest supermarket chain, was also kidnapped and ransomed for a rumored similar amount. In 1996 authorities claimed to have recovered nearly $10 mil of the Helu ransom.
(SFC, 8/28/96, p.A10)
1994 The cellular license owned by Carlos Hank Rhon and BellSouth was sold to Grupo Iusacell , owned by the Peralta family, for over $100 million.
(WSJ, 11/1/96, p.A6)
1994 The "Metales y Derivados" plant, a car battery recycling facility in Tijuana, was closed for failure to properly dispose hazardous waste. Investigations into pollution from the plant were demanded in 2000.
(SFC, 5/19/00, p.D4)
1994 The El Vizcaino Biosphere Region in Baja California was declared a UN World Heritage Site.
(SFC, 3/13/99, p.A14)
1994 Socorro Island, one of the Revilagigedo Islands south of Baja, was declared a ‘biosphere reserve."
(SFC, 6/14/00, p.B2)
1994 A disease called Zebra chip, which affected potatoes and caused potato chips to develop stripes, was first noticed in Mexico. By 2000 it had spread to Texas. It was later found that an insect called the potato psyllid served as a vector for the disease.
(Econ, 8/2/08, p.81)
1994 A drought began in northern Mexico.
(SFC, 5/15/99, p.A11)
1994 Mexico declared black bears a protected species. They were hunted out of about 80% of their original habitat in Mexico in the last half of the 20th century.
1994-1995 Mexico experienced an economic collapse and messy peso devaluation.
(Econ, 12/13/03, p.35)
1995 Jan 3, Mexican President Ernesto Zedillo announced an emergency plan for wage and price controls and budget cuts to stabilize the peso and combat spiraling inflation. The peso had lost 37% of its value since Dec. 20, 1994.
(WSJ, 1/13/95, p.A-3)(AP, 1/3/00)
1995 Jan 4, Eduardo Mata (52), Mexican conductor, died in air crash.
1995 Jan-1995 Jun, Almost 9,000 companies went bankrupt and 1 million Mexicans were thrown out of work.
(SFC, 8/3/98, p.A13)
1995 Feb 21, The United States and Mexico signed an agreement to unlock $20 billion in U.S. support to stabilize the peso, but under tough conditions.
1995 Feb 28, Raul Salinas de Gortari was arrested for masterminding the murder of Jose Francisco Ruiz Sep 28, 1994. He was imprisoned in Almaloya prison, Mexico’s highest-security facility. In 1998 Raul Salinas was acquitted of money laundering but remained in jail on murder and illegal-enrichment charges.
(WSJ, 4/15/96, p.A-15)(SFC, 4/8/97, p.A6)(SFC, 5/22/98, p.D4)(SFC, 1/22/99, p.A10)
1995 Feb, Mexico borrowed $20 bil from the US.
(WSJ, 1/29/96, p. A-1)
1995 Feb, The Mexican government identified Subcommander Marcos of the Zapatistas as former university Prof. Rafael Sebastian Guillen. A government offensive reduced the amount of territory controlled by the rebels.
1995 Mar 10, The Clinton administration released $3 billion to support Mexico's faltering economy. Former Mexican President Carlos Salinas de Gortari fled to the United States.
1995 Mar 23, Former Mexican deputy attorney general Mario Ruiz Massieu, brother of slain Francisco, was arrested in Newark N.J. after failing to declare $46,000 in cash.
(SFC, 3/13/97, p.A14)(SFC, 7/15/98, p.A8)(SFC, 8/28/99, p.A1)
1995 Mar, Secret negotiations took place in Mexico between Pres. Ernesto Zedillo and his predecessor Carlos Salinas They struck a deal to protect Salinas from prosecution or interrogation on corruption and murder charges. The episode was described in "Bordering On Chaos: Guerrillas, Stockbrokers, Politicians and Mexico’s Road to Prosperity" by Andres Oppenheimer.
(SFC, 6/3/96, BR p.12)
1995 Jun 23, Hector "El Guero" Palma, reputed head of the Sinaloa drug cartel, was arrested after his plane crashed near Guadalajara. He faced 9 counts of murder for the killing of 9 relatives and associates of his rival Miguel Angel Felix Gallardo. Gallardo had earlier decapitated Palma’s first wife and arranged the murder of his 2 children.
(SFC, 7/18/97, p.A11)
1995 June 28, Mexican police fired on a group of peasants at Agua Blancas in Guerrero. An edited video aired nationally showed that the peasants were armed, but raw video later showed police shooting unarmed peasants, who were than filmed with planted weapons on their corpses. 17 peasants from the leftist Southern Sierra Campesino Organization were killed and 23 others wounded. In 1996 Virgilia Galeana Garcia testified that Gen. Mario Arturo Acosta Chaparro was at the scene of the massacre.
(SFC, 4/28/96, A-16)(SFC, 6/15/96, p.C12)(SFC, 9/2/00, p.A14)
1995 Sep 27-Oct 6, Hurricane Opal caused at least 50 deaths in Guatemala and Mexico and 20 deaths in the United States. The storm hit Central America before striking Florida, Alabama, Georgia, and North Carolina.
1995 Oct, An earthquake of 7.8 magnitude shakes Mexico's Pacific coast killing at least 90 in southern Jalisco state.
(WSJ, 10/10/95, p.A-1)
1995 Oct, The country's currency plunged to its lowest level in seven months. Finance Minister Guillermo Ortiz was trying to complete an economic plan for 1996. President Ernesto Zedillo sent Congress a bill to set up an independent agency to audit federal spending in the hopes of combating official corruption.
(WSJ, 10/27/95, p.A-10) (WSJ, 11/30/95, p.A-12)
1995 Oct, Aaron Lopez Smith allegedly murdered 2 brothers in Sonora and fled across the border to Arizona. He was extradited in 1998.
(SFC, 2/16/98, p.A11)
1995 Nov 15, Swiss police arrested Paulina Castanon, wife of Raul Salinas, a former government official and brother of former president Carlos Salinas. Raul is now in jail for involvement in the murder of Jose Francisco, the No. 2 official in the ruling Institutional Revolutionary Party. Paulina was arrested for trying to withdraw money under false identification from accounts holding $84 mil. Carlos Salinas is currently a director of Dow Jones & Co., publ. of the Wall St. Journal. Raul's $14 million in Mexican real-estate holdings along with the bank deposits are being used to prove that he committed financial improprieties as a government functionary.
(WSJ, 11/27/95, p.A-13) (WSJ, 2/8/96, p.A-1,6)
1995 Nov 29, The attorney general, Antonio Lozano Grazia, says that perhaps 80% of his federal judicial police are corrupt.
(WSJ, 12/29/95, p.A-11)
1995 Nov, A congressional commission on government corruption was set up.
(SFC, 9/28/96, p.A9)
1995 Dec, The Garza Sadas family dominates the glass business in Mexico.
(WSJ, 12/1/95, p.A-10)
1995 Dec, The Mexican government was investigating fraudulent business practices of Adriana Salinas. Jose Francisco Ruiz Massieu was the ex-husband of Adriana Salinas, sister of the ex-president, Carlos Salinas de Gortari.
(WSJ, 12/1/95, p.A-10)
1995 Dec, The Mexican government planned to take control of Grupo Financiero Inverlat SA to recapitalize the ailing bank. Equity will be severely diluted or perhaps wiped out.
(WSJ, 12/1/95, p.A-10)
1995 Dec, Banamex, Mexico's largest banking group, planned to sell nearly $2 billion in bad loans to the government.
(WSJ, 12/15/95, p.A-1)
1995 Dec, Eight of Mexico's 18 largest banks have sought government assistance. They plan to transfer $5.6 bil in bad loans to the government.
(WSJ, 12/21/95, p.A-5)
1995 Mexico’s GDP fell by 6% this year.
(Econ, 10/11/08, SR p.26)
1995 In Mexico a new pension-revision program was aimed at increasing domestic savings to 22% of gross domestic product by the year 2000.
(WSJ, 11/10/95, p. A-6)
1995 Mexico’s Pres. Ernesto Zedillo signed a law creating the Cabo Pulmo National Marine Reserve off the Baha Peninsula in the Gulf of California.
(SFC, 1/17/06, p.A10)
1995 Santiago Levy, Mexico’s deputy finance minister, began a program in Campeche to pay poor mothers to keep their children in school and take their kids to the health clinic. The program called Progresa was successful and under Pres. Fox was renamed Oportunidades.
(Econ, 11/18/06, Survey p.7)(http://tinyurl.com/ubndr)
1995 Mexico created Cintra, a holding company to rescue Aeromexico and Mexicana airlines.
(Econ, 3/26/05, p.63)
1995-1997 Oscar Espinosa Villarreal served as the PRI-appointed mayor of Mexico City. In 2000 corruption charges were filed with allegations that he embezzled some $46 million during his 3 years in office.
(SFC, 3/31/00, p.E4)
1996 Jan 1, Two buses collided in northern Mexico, killing 25 people.
1996 Jan 15, Juan Garcia Abrego, a top drug suspect, was arrested and deported to the US for trial. He allegedly headed a syndicate with links to cocaine operations in Columbia. Horacio Brunt, Mexican policeman, collared Juan Garcia Abrego, a Mexican drug kingpin. Abrego ‘s gang raked in more than $10 bil a year in revenue.
(WSJ, 1/16/96, p. A-1)(WSJ, 4/12/96, p.A-1)
1996 Jan 29, Mexico paid the US $1.3 billion. It was the second payment of a $20 bil US loan from last February.
(WSJ, 1/29/96, p. A-1)
1996 Jan, The FAC-NLN was founded as a nationwide leftist coalition.
(SFC, 12/10/96, p.A13)
1996 Feb, In San Andres Larrainzar in Chiapas the government signed a partial peace accord on indigenous rights with the Zapatistas.
1996 Mar, Gov. Ruben Figueroa of Guerrero stepped down after the Supreme Court began an investigation over the June-’95 killing of peasants.
(SFC, 6/15/96, p.C12)
1996 Apr 4, The average negotiated wage in Mexico has been 19%, far below the inflation rate of 27-30% forecast by independent economists. The government just raised the minimum wage 12% but also implemented a 27% raise in the cost of tortillas.
(WSJ, 4/4/96, A-10)
1996 Apr 10, A protest group of about 500 peasants was fired on by police with one killed and dozens wounded. They were headed to the annual Zapata commemoration in Tlaltizapan, the site of Zapata’s headquarters.
(SFC, 4/13/96, p.A-10)
1996 Apr 12, A judge in Toluca, Mexico ordered that Raul Salinas de Gortari stand trial on charges of hiding millions of dollars in unexplained income during his career as administrator of food-subsidy programs in the 1980s.
(WSJ, 4/15/96, p.A-15)
1996 Apr 17, The former chief prosecutor, Jose Arturo Ochoa Palacios, in the initial investigation of the murder of pres. candidate Luis Donaldo Colosio was gunned down in a Tijuana park.
(SFC, 4/18/96, p.a-13)
1996 Apr 22, Edwin Bustillos was a Goldman Award winner for his work as defender of native lands and culture in Mexico.
(USAT, 4/22/96, p.4-D)
1996 Apr 30, Five climbers were burned to death by a blast from Popocatepetl volcano.
(SFEC, 11/29/98, p.A27)
1996 Apr, Three brothers from Michoacan died in Temecula, Calif., when their hired coyote drove a van over a cliff while being pursued by the Border Patrol. In 2001 Ruben Martinez authored "Crossing Over: A Mexican Family on the Migrant Trail," an account of their story.
(SSFC, 11/11/01, p.M6)
1996 May 7, Indian supporters of the Zapatista rebels occupied two radio stations in Chiapas and demanded the release of Javier Elloriaga, a TV journalist who was sentenced to 13 years in prison last week on charges of being a Zapatista commander. Sub-commander Marcos later signed his communiqués "speedy Gonzalez."
(SFC, 5/8/96, p.A-19)(SFEC, 7/20/98, p.A10)
1996 May 8, A government task force in the state of Sinaloa issued a report on the mysterious chupacabras or "goat-sucker." An unknown creature has been killing goats and leaving fang marks. The report said: There is no goat sucker, but pollution is now so bad that it is driving animals mad, giving them the behavioral trappings of crazed alien creatures."
(SFC, 5/11/96, p.A-10)
1996 May 10, A plane crashed and killed 16 people in the rugged mountains of northwestern Mexico. The twin-turboprop De Haviland Twin Otter DHC-6 was flying from Durango and crashed in Santa Maria de Otaes, a small mining town.
(SFC, 5/11/96, p.A-10)
1996 May 16, The government announced a plan to pay debt-strapped home-owners up to 30% of their monthly mortgage payments thus easing the pressure on the country’s bleeding banks.
(SFC, 5/17/96, p.A-15)
1996 May 18, Sergeo Moreno Perez, regional head of the Attorney General’s office in Baja was found shot with his son on the outskirts of Mexico City.
(SFC, 5/20/96, p.A-9)
1996 May 23, In Mexico a teacher’s march turned into a bloody confrontation with police and 40 teachers were injured. Pres. Zedillo later fired Police Chief David Garay for his heavy-handed action.
(SFC, 6/1/96, p.A12)
1996 May 24, In Paris a meeting of 21 donor countries agreed to a $49 bil emergency bailout fund to deal with future Mexican economic crises.
(SFC, 5/24/96, p.A14)
1996 May 31, Tens of thousands of teachers marched in Mexico City for a pay raise and to protest the police crack-down on a previous march last week. Most teacher salaries are about $400 per month.
(SFC, 6/1/96, p.A12)
1996 May, Police official Jesus Carolla and others were reported by Mexican intelligence to have met with the Arellano Felix brothers, alleged leaders of the Tijuana drug cartel.
1996 Jun 3, Navistar Int’l will open an assembly plant and parts distribution operation this year.
(WSJ, 8/8/95, p. B6C)
1996 Jun 8, General Enrique Salgado assumed Mexico City’s top police job and indicated that he would appoint military officers to key public security posts. He also said that he will stress citizen participation in forming policy.
(SFC, 6/10/96, C16)
1996 Jun 10, A report on Mexico estimated that 800,000 children under 14 worked in different sectors of the economy. The Mexican constitution and federal labor law prohibits the employment of children under 14. Based on a 1990 census, the Sec. of Public Education estimated that 2.5 million children between 6 & 14 do not attend school.
(SFC, 6/10/96, C3)
1996 Jun 11, A Chilean-based fruit company signed a letter of intent to purchase Fresh Del Monte Produce NV for $534 mil. A subsidiary of United Trading Company Desarollo & Comercio SA of Santiago signed the letter. Mr. Cabal remains a minority shareholder through a Netherlands Antilles fund called Trumpet Vine where he and the state-owned development bank, Nacional Financiera SA, placed an 8.5% equity stake in 1992.
(WSJ, 6/12/96, p.A10)
1996 Jun 16, Gov. Ruben Figueroa of was cleared by the judicial authorities of Guerrero after an investigation over the June-’95 police killing of peasants.
(SFC, 6/15/96, p.C12)
1996 Jun 19, Mexico will repay $4.7 billion of the $10.5 billion in US Treasury borrowings from last year.
(WSJ, 6/19/96, p.A1)
1996 Jun 28, A new guerrilla group, The People’s Revolutionary Army (EPR), disrupted a political meeting in the state of Guerrero.
(SFC, 7/2/96, p.A8)
1996 Jun, Near Alamos in southern Sonora state the 225,000-acre Sierra de Alamos-Rio Cuchujaqui Flora and Fauna Protected Area was established.
(NH, 4/97, p.38)
1996 Jul 9, Mexico City’s police chief announced that every top official in his department was replaced with military officers. The move was made to break up corruption and abuse in the old "brotherhood."
(SFC, 7/10/96, p.A7)
1996 Jul 25, Mexico said it will repay $7 bil of the remaining $10.5 bil borrowed from the US Treasury, partly through a $6 bil issue of securities.
(WSJ, 7/26/96, p.A1)
1996 Jul, Congress passed constitutional amendments designed to control fraud and reduce the advantage of the PRI.
(SFC, 11/16/96, p.A11)
1996 Aug 16, In Mexico Attorney General Antonio Lozano fired 734 members of the Mexico City judicial police in an attempt to reform the drug-fighting force. Police official Jesus Carolla, was on the list, but resigned before being fired.
(SFC, 8/17/96, p.A14)(SFC,12/11/97, p.C3)
1996 Aug 17, Federal prosecutor, Jesus Romero Magan, was killed. He was the first prosecutor to interrogate the gunman who killed Luis Colosio, the pres. candidate in 1994.
(SFC, 8/19/96, p.A9)
1996 Aug 28, In Mexico the EPR struck at government targets in 6 states and left at least 6 dead and 28 injured.
(SFC, 8/30/96, p.A1)
1996 Aug, Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador (43) became president of the PRD party.
(WSJ, 12/11/96, p.A18)
1996 Aug, The Zapatista rebels pulled out of peace talks and accused the government of stalling.
1996 cAug, The US Army began a training program for Mexican officers to develop an elite counter-narcotics unit.
(SFC, 2/27/98, p.A18)
1996 Sep 13, In Mexico Juan Francisco Ealy, editor of El Universal, was arrested on allegations of tax fraud. His paper had recently begun strong criticism of the Zedillo government.
(SFC, 9/14/96, p.A10)
1996 Sep 15, Federal police officer Ernesto Ibarra Santes (50) was gunned down in Mexico City. He was in charge of drug trafficking in Baha California del Norte, the center of operations for the narcotics cartel of the Arellano Felix brothers. He had only taken the position on Aug 16.
(SFE, 9/16/96, p.A9)
1996 Sep 17, In Mexico Razhy Gonzalez, editor of the small Contrapunto weekly, was abducted in Oaxaca.
(SFC, 9/19/96, p.A10)
1996 Sep 22, Mexico’s Civic Alliance began asking questions of accountability of the leadership. Pres. Zedillo claims to make $8,000 a month, but he has a secret fund of $86 million approved by Congress.
(SFC, 9/22/96, Parade p.30)
1996 Sep 23, Financing was expected to enable the start of the $551 million channel project, a 272-mile Tamaulipas Intracoastal Waterway on the east coast to link Mexico to US cargo channels.
(WSJ, 9/23/96, p.A17)
1996 Sep 27, PRI deputies presented a final report on government corruption and voted to end the commission of corruption. A separate government panel said $1.34 billion was missing from the 1990 privatization of Telefonos de Mexico.
(SFC, 9/28/96, p.A9)
1996 Oct 2, Mexican and US authorities captured 5 alleged hit men of the Arellan Felix brothers drug cartel in a series of raids in Mexico and California.
(SFC, 10/3/96, p.A8)
1996 Oct 9, Police found a human skull and bones on a ranch owned by Raul Salinas. Police were led to the site by Francisca Zetina, aka "La Paca" a self proclaimed witch. They suspected that it was Manuel Munoz Rocha, a federal congressman who disappeared after the 9/28/94 slaying of Ruiz Massieu. Prosecutors say that Salinas and Rocha conspired to kill Massieu. An official autopsy showed that the found body had undergone a previous autopsy. Later examination found that the body was not that of Munoz Rocha but of Zetina’s father-in-law (d.1993). In 1999 Zetina was sentenced to 9 years in prison.
(SFC, 10/10/96, p.A12) (SFC, 10/12/96, p.A11) (SFC, 12/3/96,p.A12) (SFC, 2/1/97, p.A12) (SFC, 10/9/99, p.A11)
1996 Oct 10, It was reported that Mexico had the highest rate of deforestation in the world with 2.5 million acres of forest and jungle felled each year.
(SFC, 10/10/96, p.A12)
1996 Oct 11, Zapatista Commander Ramona, a 4 foot 4 inch Tzotzil Indian, arrived in Mexico City to plead the rebel cause.
(SFC, 10/15/96, p.A10)
1996 Oct 25, The opera Florencia en el Amazonas premiered in Houston. It was composed by Daniel Catan of Mexico with libretto by Marcela Fuentes-Berain.
(WSJ, 11/1/96, p.A11)
1996 Oct 27, The EPR announced the end of a cease-fire with the federal government.
(SFC, 11/2/96, p.A9)
1996 Oct, Eli Aguilar, leader of the Francisco Villa Patriotic Front, Mexico City’s largest slum organizing committee was arrested on year-old charges for clashing with the police.
(SFC, 12/10/96, p.A13)
1996 Nov 1, Five police officers were slain in southern Mexico and another outside Mexico City. The EPR claimed responsibility.
(SFC, 11/2/96, p.A9)
1996 Nov 7, Police and army units arrested 14 men as suspected leftist guerrillas in Oaxaca. In Chiapas state 27 members of humanitarian groups working with rebel villages received death threats.
(SFC, 11/8/96, p.A18)
1996 Nov 10, In Chiapas police and federal soldiers killed 3 protestors during a clash over corn prices.
(SFC, 11/11/96, p.A10)
1996 Nov 14, PRI deputies approved the rewritten "all-party accords" that had been initially designed to stem their power.
(SFC, 11/16/96, p.A11)
1996 Nov, A new insurgency group called ERIP (Revolutionary Army of Popular Insurgence) was reported in the mountains of the Papalopan region of Oaxaca.
(SFEC, 12/1/96, p.T9)
1996 Nov, In Loxicha, Oaxaca, police and army troops arrested the mayor, the municipal council and 40 others. They were members or supporters of FAC-MLN, the Broad Front for the Construction of a National Liberation Movement whose goals included a new constitution, state regulated economic policies with more social spending, and an end to government crackdown on its followers.
(SFC, 12/10/96, p.A12)
1996 Dec 2, Pres. Ernesto Zedillo fired Attorney Gen’l. Antonio Lozano Gracia, the only non-PRI cabinet member. He was succeeded by Jorge Madrazo Cuellar, the head of the human-rights commission.
(SFC, 12/3/96, p.A12)(WSJ, 12/3/96, p.A1)
1996 Dec 3, Fernando Balderas, lawyer-journalist, and his wife Yolanda Figueroa and 3 children were beaten to death. The couple had reported exposes on drugs and corruption in the government. Balderas published the magazine Fourth Power. Alejandro Perez, the family chauffeur, later confessed to participating in the killings with 2 others because Balderas had raped the gardener’s wife and attempted to rape his wife. Balderas had helped his wife write "The Boss of the Gulf," about drug cartel leader Juan Garcia Abrego.
(SFC, 12/7/96, p.A10)(SFC, 12/26/96, p.B4)
1996 Dec 15, Humberto Roque Villanueva was sworn in as the new head of the ruling Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI).
(SFC, 12/18/96, p.A25)
1996 Dec 18, Former Veracruz Governor Dante Delgado was jailed for amassing a $57 million fortune while in charge of the oil-rich Gulf-coast state.
(SFC, 12/19/96, p.C5)
1996 Dec 26, The Dept. of Commerce announced a 15% price hike in the cost of tortillas and pasteurized milk.
(SFC, 12/27/96, p.B3)
1996 Dec, Carlos Fuentes published "A New Time for Mexico."
(SFC, 12/31/96, p.C9)
1996 Mexico changed its constitution to allow émigré nationals to vote, but no law was passed to enable the change.
(Econ, 6/26/04, p.40)
1996 General Jesus Guitterez Rebollo allegedly attended a meeting between military officials and drug smugglers.
(SFC, 3/26/98, p.B3)
1997 Jan 1, Long-distance telephone competition began and ended a 49-year monopoly.
(SFC, 1/1/97, p.B3)
1997 Jan 3, A Jalisco state judge dismissed drug trafficking charges against Hector Luis Palma, leader of the Sinaloa drug cartel. He was sentenced to 6 years on lesser charges.
(SFC, 1/9/96, p.A12)
1997 Jan 5, At least 26 people were arrested in Sinaloa state, many of them police officers, at the wedding party for the sister of Amado Carrillo, the reputed top drug trafficker in Mexico. Carillo was tipped of and escaped. This prompted the government to replace 10 police chiefs with army officers.
(SFC, 1/8/96, p.A7)(SFC, 1/20/96, p.A13)
1997 Jan 11, In Mexico a 7.3 earthquake shook the western and central areas.
(SFEC, 1/12/97, p.A2)
1997 Jan 12, Four generals and a colonel met with Mr. Gonzalez Quirarte, the right-hand man of drug lord, Carillo Fuentes, to arrange protection according to later statements made by Gen. Jesus Gutierrez Rebollo. This was the 3rd meeting that Rebollo attended.
(WSJ, 10/2/97, p.A12)(SFC, 3/26/98, p.B3)
1997 Jan 15, Mexico announced the final $3.5 billion payment on the [Feb, 1995] $13.5 billion US loan.
(SFC, 1/16/96, p.A1)
1997 Jan 19, Riot police broke up a hunger strike on behalf of 300 street sweepers laid off in Tabasco. Two workers declared they would fast "to the death" had already gone for 96 days on just water and glucose.
(SFC, 1/20/96, p.A13)
1997 Jan 22, Officials agreed to pay back wages or give back jobs to the street sweepers of Tabasco.
(SFC, 1/24/97, p.A15)
1997 Jan 27, Police arrested Benigno Guzman, president of the Peasant Organization of the Southern Sierra, an anti-government alliance of poor farmers near Acapulco on charges of belonging to the EPR guerrilla group.
(SFC, 1/28/97, p.A8)
1997 Jan, At a 2nd meeting between military officials and drug smugglers, Gen’l. Juan Humberto Salinas Altes, the army’s chief of staff, was allegedly in attendance.
(SFC, 3/26/98, p.B3)
1997 Feb 18, General Jesus Guitterez Rebollo was dismissed from the armed forces and held for charges of collaborating with Amado Carillo Fuentes, leader of the most powerful Mexican drug cartel. He was the head of the National Institute for Combating Drugs (INCD), which became defunct.
(SFC, 2/19/96, p.A1)(SFC, 7/28/97, p.A11)
1997 Mar 10, Mexico named a new drug czar, lawyer Mariano Federico Herran Salvatti.
(SFC, 3/11/97, p.A11)
1997 Mar 14, Five Zapatista guerrillas were killed in a clash with the police in Chiapas. Four were injured and 27 wounded when police dislodged hundreds who had been squatting on a farm near San Pedro Nixtalucum.
(SFC, 3/17/97, p.A8)
1997 Mar 17, Army Brigadier Gen’l. Alfredo Navarro Lara was arrested for trying to buy off authorities in Baha. He offered payments of $1 million a month to Gen’l. Jose Luis Chavez Garcia to allow cocaine to pass into the US.
(SFC, 3/18/97, p.A10)
1997 Apr 8, Raul Gutierrez, director of the capital’s nine prisons, resigned. More resignations in light of corruption and special privileges for imprisoned powerful drug traffickers followed.
(SFC, 4/10/97, p.A14)
1997 Apr 16, Emilio Azcarraga Milmo, former president and chairman of Grupo Televisa SA, died at age 66.
(SFC, 4/18/97, p.E2)
1997 Apr 24, Forty specially trained soldiers of the Special Forces (GAFE) were assigned to the int’l. airport to question and search passengers for drugs. In 1998 they and 15 civilians were withdrawn on suspicion of drug and immigrant smuggling.
(SFC, 9/10/98, p.C3)
1997 Apr 27, Two federal police agents, Roberto Espinoza and Marco Vasquez, were found shot dead with signs of torture in Mexico city. They had been investigating Amado Carrillo, Mexico’s most powerful drug lord.
(SFC, 4/28/97, p.A12)
1997 May 6, US Pres. Clinton made a state visit to Mexico and spent some time meeting with the leaders of Mexico’s main opposition parties.
(SFC, 5/7/97, p.c3)
1997 May 21, A half-ton of cocaine was stolen from a police station in Sonora. Seven government employees were later charged with the theft.
(SDUT, 6/6/97, p.A1)
1997 May 27, In Guerrero a government anti-drug patrol was attacked by some 25 armed men of the EPR. At least nine men were killed. A truce was to have lasted until the Jul 6, parliamentary elections.
(SFC, 5/29/97, p.A11)
1997 May 28, Francisca Cervantes (b.1879), the oldest lady in Mexico, died in Chiapas at age 118.
(SFC, 5/30/97, p.A26)
1997 Jun 20, Authorities announced the discovery of 53 properties, 36 bank accounts and 4 aliases for Raul Salinas.
(SFC, 6/21/97, p.A11)
1997 Jun 21, Fidel Velasquez Sanchez (1900-1997), first head of the Confederation of Mexican Workers, died in Mexico City.
(SFEC, 6/22/97, p.D8)
1997 Jul 1, Popocatepetl erupted 33 miles Mexico City and covered the capital in ash.
(SFC, 7/2/97, p.A9)
1997 Jul 4, From Mexico it was reported that Amado Carillo Fuentes (41), Mexico’s reputed top drug trafficker, died following extensive plastic surgery. His operations were centered in Juarez, across the border from El Paso. He was called "Lord of the Skies" for using passenger jets to bring in cocaine from Columbia. It was later reported that his death was an inside job arranged because a massive manhunt for him had become a liability to his cartel’s business.
(SFEC, 7/6/97, p.B4)(SFC, 7/7/97, p.A10)(SFC, 2/14/98, p.A9)
1997 Jul 6, In Mexico City Cuauhtemoc Cardenas Solorzano, leader of the opposition Party of the Democratic Revolution, declared victory in the race for mayor. The PRI lost its majority in the lower house of Congress. The four opposition parties banded together in a coalition to inaugurate the new Congress on Aug 30.
(SFC, 7/7/97, p.A1)(SFC, 9/1/97, p.A14)
1997 Jul 13, The book "Endangered Mexico: An Environment on the Edge" by Joel Simon was reviewed.
(SFEC, 7/13/97, BR p.3)
1997 Jul 16, Benjamin Flores Gonzalez (29), a newspaper editor of La Prensa, was gunned down in San Luis Colorado across the border from Yuma, Ariz.
(SFC, 7/17/97, p.A9)
1997 Jul 18, Police arrested Rolando Arroyo Palacios, aka "Long Hair," in San Luis Rio Colorado for the murder of journalist Flores Gonzalez. He had been supposedly hired by Ismael Guttierrez, brother of Jaime Gonzalez Guttierez, who was arrested last month.
(SFC, 7/19/97, p.A11)
1997 Aug 4, It was reported that the Lacandon Jungle rain forest was 40% destroyed from its original 4 million acres. Poor peasants were clearing the jungle by fire to provide for agricultural needs.
(SFC, 8/4/97, p.A8)
1997 Aug 4, Gunmen killed 6 people in the Max Fim restaurant in Ciudad Juarez.
(SFC, 8/5/97, p.A9)
1997 Aug 7, In Mexico City Jose Paoletti Moreda and his son Renato were arrested on charges of leading an operation that smuggled deaf people into the US and forced them to work under virtual slavery conditions.
(SFC, 8/8/97, p.A3)
1997 cAug 15, The Saba family’s 22% stake in Television Azteca SA was sold through an IPO. The family led by Isaac Saba Raffoul was reputed to have a cash equivalent of a billion dollars with the sale.
(WSJ, 8/22/97, p.A10)
1997 Aug 16, Alejandro Ortiz Martinez, brother of the finance minister Guillermo Ortiz, was shot and killed by three gunmen in Mexico City.
(SFEC, 8/17/97, p.A21)
1997 Aug 28, The government’s National Human Rights Commission recommended that the Durango State Attorney Gen’l. Francisco Arroyo be fired for negligence. This was in response to the suicide 2 months ago of 16-year-old Yessica Diaz Cazares who had been gang raped some 5 months ago. Yessica had spent 3 months recounting her story to officials under threats from her attackers and pressure from authorities to drop the charges.
(SFC, 8/30/97, p.A14)
1997 Sep 8, The Fox and Jaguar SWAT police in Mexico City engaged in a gun fight with a neighborhood gang. One young man and one police officer died. Police seized 6 youths and 3 were found dead the next day with gunshot wounds to the head. Three more were found dead on Sep 29. On Oct 3 nineteen members of the police force were arraigned for the executions. Three ranking officers were later arrested due to contradictory and misleading statements.
(SFC, 10/4/97, p.A8)(SFC,11/19/97, p.A14)
1997 Sep 12, Tens of thousands rallied in the central square of Mexico City in support of the Zapatista movement.
(SFEC, 9/14/97, p.A24)
1997 Sep 13, A national Zapatista civilian movement was inaugurated.
(SFEC, 9/14/97, p.A24)
1997 Sep, In Chiapas gunmen demanded a "war tax" of $1.25 from villagers every couple weeks and threatened them if they refused. It was reported that the PRI had distributed guns to allies in villages around Puebla.
1997 Oct 6, Workers at the Han Young de Mexico factory in Tijuana voted to be represented by an independent union, the Metal, Steel and Allied workers Union of the Authenticated labor Front (FAT). It was the first time that an existing company-dominated union was ousted in the maquiladora industry. After weeks the results were still not formalized and 4 workers who voted for the union were fired. On Nov 10 the Tijuana Labor Board invalidated the vote claiming the union was not nationally registered. [see Dec 14]
(SFC, 10/8/97, p.A8)(SFC,10/30/97, p.A14)(SFC,11/15/97, p.A13)
1997 Oct 7, It was reported that at least 100 people were reported as disappeared in the state of Chihuahua, mostly around Ciudad Juarez, the base for Mexico’s largest drug cartel.
(SFC, 10/7/97, p.A15)
1997 Oct 9, Hurricane Pauline swept through Acapulco and left at least 124 dead.
(SFC, 10/10/97, p.A1)
1997 Oct 24, Luis Aguilar, singer and actor nicknamed "Wild Rooster," died at age 79. He had appeared in 155 motion pictures over 5 decades.
(LAT, 9/29/97, p.A18)
1997 Nov 4, A convoy with Bishop Samuel Ruiz was attacked in Crucero in northern Chiapas. Three church workers were wounded. The Peace and Justice group, associated with the PRI, was thought to be responsible.
1997 Nov 2, Three bodies were found stuffed in oil drums filled with concrete along a southern Mexico highway. [see Nov 5]
1997 Nov 5, In Mexico relatives identified the body of Dr. Jaime Godoy Singh (Zinc)(37). He and 2 others were found Nov 2 stuffed into oil drums partly filled with cement. He was the doctor suspected of operating on Amado Carillo Fuentes who died under surgery July 4. Dr. Ricardo Reyes was the other doctor. A third doctor, Carlos Humberto Avila Meljem, was thought to be the third.
(SFC,11/6/97, p.C3)(SFC,11/8/97, p.A11)
1997 Nov 6, Prosecutors announced that 2 of the 3 doctors found dead in oil drums were being charged with the murder of druglord Amado Carillo Fuentes. The 3rd doctor was charged last month.
1997 Nov 9, Hurricane Rick hit the coast of Oaxaca state.
1997 Nov 16, It was reported that the maquiladora plants along the US border have for years regularly demanded female employees to provide periodic evidence of non-pregnancy in order to avoid mandated 3-month maternity leave.
1997 Nov 19, In Mexico members of the elite Zorro police unit protested the arrest of their comrades for the Sep 8 killing of 6 youths. They ended their standoff after 14 hours and allowed the questioning of 14 officers.
(SFC,11/20/97, p.B2)(SFC,11/21/97, p.D6)
1997 Nov 19, Edmundo Tasinnari, head of the Mexico City anti-kidnapping unit, and Humberto Salgado, his deputy, were kidnapped with their driver. The driver was later found beaten and wandering in a daze.
1997 Nov 22, Gen’l. Mauro Enrique Tello was fired and arrested for his suspected role in the Sep 8 killing of 6 youths. It was reported that the attack was ordered by Col. Jesus Alonso after thieves robbed him at gunpoint of a Rolex watch and some money weeks earlier.
1997 Nov 25, Two high-ranking army officers were charged with murder in the Sep 8 killings. It was the first time in modern Mexican history that a civilian court had brought charges against an army officer.
(WSJ, 11/26/97, p.A1)
1997 Nov 28, The new National Workers Union (UNT) was inaugurated in Mexico City. It will compete with the 4-million member Congress of Mexican Labor (CTM), considered a pliant ally of the PRI.
(SFC, 11/29/97, p.A14)
1997 Nov 29, Some 25,000 demonstrators marched in Mexico City to protest crime, violence and police corruption.
(WSJ, 12/1/97, p.A1)
1997 Dec 5, In Mexico City Mayor Cuautemoc Cardenas (63) was sworn into office. He named Jesus Carrola as head of the judicial police.
(SFC,12/6/97, p.A8)(SFC,12/11/97, p.C3)
1997 Dec 8, Mexico agreed with the European Union to negotiate a trade pact.
1997 Dec 9, The US began an investigation of Grupo Hank, a large financial empire controlled by Carlos Hank Gonzales, a former mayor of Mexico City, and his sons Carlos Hank Rhon and Jorge Hank Rhon. A 1999 report concluded that the family was heavily involved in drug trafficking and money laundering.
(SFC, 6/2/99, p.A1,14)
1997 Dec 10, Jesus Carrola, the new judicial police chief of Mexico City, stepped down amid allegations of links to torture and drug traffickers.
1997 Dec 10, Vincent Carroza, a hotel manager in Acapulco from New Jersey, was kidnapped by 9 gunmen dressed as federal police agents. His was the 104th kidnapping reported in the state in 20 months. He was released unharmed after 8 days.
(SFC,12/11/97, p.A18)(SFC,12/18/97, p.C12)
1997 Dec 14, It was reported that the Korean owners of the Han Young plant in Tijuana have agreed to cut ties with the government union and recognize the independent Unidad Obrera (Worker Unity) that was elected on Oct 6.
1997 Dec 14, The 500-seat Chamber of Deputies approved Pres. Zedillo’s $108.9 billion budget for 1988. The secret budget was reduced to $6.25 million.
1997 Dec 15, A gang of armed masked men raided several homes and seized some 20 teenagers and young adults. Several were tortured and Salvador Jimenez Lopez (25) was found dead a week later. On Jan 7 authorities arrested 28 officers and soldiers who were believed to be responsible. In Dec 1998 11 state officials were barred from public office for 10 years for failing to stop the massacre.
(SFC, 1/8/98, p.B10)(SFC, 12/15/98, p.C2)
1997 Dec 15, Peter Zarate (40), an executive for New York-based Cushman and Wakefield, was shot and killed in a taxi robbery in a wealthy Mexico City neighborhood.
1997 Dec 17, A young man from an Indian hamlet near Acteal was killed in an ambush by masked gunmen. Antonio Vazquez Secum summoned a band of gunmen and dispatched them to Acteal for revenge.
(SFEC, 1/25/98, p.A15)
1997 Dec 22, In Mexico some 70 pro-government gunmen of the Peace and Justice paramilitary group killed 45 people, including 21 women 9 men and 15 children, in the Tzoztzil Indian village of Acteal. Opposition groups called for the resignation of Gov. Julio Cesar Ruiz Ferro, who had repeatedly denied the existence of paramilitary groups in the state. In 1998 12 officials of the state attorney general’s office were arrested for failing to stop the massacre. The government paid compensation to families of the victims and to the wounded. In 1999 20 government supporters were sentenced to 35 years in prison and 81 people were still scheduled for trial. In Dec 2007 authorities re-arrested Antonio Santiz, the alleged mastermind of the massacre. Santiz had been arrested for his alleged involvement in 2000, but a judge threw out the charges in 2001, ruling there wasn't enough evidence. In 2008 a Mexican judge sentenced brothers Antonio and Mariano Pucuj to 26 years in prison for their participation in the massacre. In August, 2009, Mexico's Supreme Court ordered freedom for 20 men convicted in the Acteal massacre and new trials for six more, ruling that prosecutors used illegally obtained evidence. In November, 2009, the Supreme Court ordered the release of nine more people convicted in massacre, ruling their convictions were based on illegally obtained evidence. New trials were ordered for 16 others.
(SFC,12/24/97, p.A1)(SFC,12/26/97, p.B7)(SFC, 7/4/98, p.A9)(SFC, 7/20/99, p.A11)(AP, 12/23/07)(AP, 2/27/08)(AP, 8/12/09)(AP, 11/4/09)
1997 Dec 26, Sixteen Maya Indians were charged with first-degree murder in the Dec 22 massacre.
1997 Dec 27, Authorities charged Jacinto Arias Cruz, the mayor of Chenalho, and 23 supporters with murder of the villagers in Acteal.
1997 A Health Ministry Study found that the use of cocaine had quadrupled among Mexico City teens in 6 years. Marijuana use had doubled.
(SFC, 6/9/98, p.A12)
1997 Gov. Vincente Fox of Guanajuato recommended that emigrants form partnerships to start local business. He offered that the state would pay to train workers and managers. This gave birth to "Mi Comunidad" and the establishment of new sewing factories.
(SFEC, 6/20/99, p.A3)
1997 Mexico implemented the Progresa social program. In 2000 it covered some 2 million rural families.
(Econ, 9/17/05, p.37)(http://tinyurl.com/d7tef)
1997 Ricardo Salinas Pliego blocked NBC from taking a 10% stake in Mexico’s TV Azteca as part of a previous deal to help TV Azteca learn the TV business.
(WSJ, 12/8/05, p.A11)
1997 In Mexico Andres Granier began serving as mayor of Villahermosa, capital of Tabasco state. He served to 2000. In 2006 Granier won elections for Tabasco state governor as a PRI candidate.
(Econ, 10/14/06, p.42)
1997 Mexico’s national census counted 93.7 million people.
(SFC, 7/9/99, p.A15)
Subject = Mexico