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Old 18 Oct 2013
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Originally Posted by xfiltrate View Post
Can we also conclude that foreign countries - not only the United States but many other nations - have targeted Latin American countries cause they got resources (gold, silver,oil etc) and are highly susceptible to accepting bribes?

I have had many conversations with Mexicans, Peruvians, etc who have been taught that before being targeted by the United States, the Spanish did a fair amount of damage.

My 20th century example was not meant to exclude other foreigners:

especially this guy....

Born Ferdinand Maximilian Joseph; 6 July 1832 – 19 June 1867) was the only monarch of the Second Mexican Empire. He was a younger brother of the Austrian emperor Franz Joseph I. After a distinguished career in the Austrian Navy, he entered into a scheme with Napoleon III of France to rule Mexico. France had invaded Mexico in 1861, with the implicit support and approval of other European powers, as part of the War of the French Intervention. Seeking to legitimize French rule, Napoleon III invited Maximilian to establish a new Mexican monarchy. With the support of the French army and a group of conservative Mexican monarchists, Maximilian traveled to Mexico where he declared himself Emperor of Mexico on 10 April 1864.

Come on markharf, you can do better!

Your posts would have a great deal more credibility if you didn't randomly copy and paste whole chunks of stuff from wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maximilian_I_of_Mexico

Please keep your utterances between the ditches (experiences you've had with Mexican law enforcement for example, like in your last post) or they'll be parked in the HU Bar.


PS. 12 years ago when I rode the length of Mexico I didn't get asked for anything, except once where one of the coppers asked if I could give him some engine oil.

If you've done nothing wrong, play the game: Distraction, bullsh!t, excessive politeness/compliments, talk about football etc., don't understand a word they say, get your phone out pretending to speak to your mate the Police chief in the next city/county.

If you are going to insult them, be very sure that they don't understand your language Post #5 at http://www.horizonsunlimited.com/hub...et-place-66414
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Old 18 Oct 2013
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Xfiltrate, no, probably it is simply a case of good luck. Tampico is a very well known hot spot for transito municipal cops being extremely corrupt.

Chris, the ride away worked for me once here in Mexico. Except I went directly to the transito office and demanded to see the chief. He couldnt believe I simply left the transito, listened to me rant and rave in Spanish, then told me just to go away because it was almost lunch time. LOL!
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Old 19 Oct 2013
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Hate , Greed and Cruelty

I sincerely hope there is more to this thread than hate, greed and cruelty.

Chris, I take your point about not applying Wiki to this thread, even if it validates the fact that Veracruz - actually from the days of Cortez has been the access to Mexico by foreign colonialists..... What I don't get is that you censor my Wiki documentation and yet another contributor, whom I will quote exactly below claims that:

" Things dont change. Mex cops do not discriminate. They'll rip off their own mothers...if they had mothers to begin with."

and, apparently, this passes muster with you.

I am confused and I pray that here, not only on this thread but throughout Horizons Unlimited we all can help each other get beyond hate, greed and cruelty.

FYI, I have actually spoken to Mexican police - although it was many years ago, and I asked about police corruption - and the consensus was that the Mexican police engaging in corruption believe that everyone is ripping everyone else off, and this is how they justify their own corruption. This would include foreigners, locals and perhaps their own families - only this I doubt.

It is not a stretch to fit "Imperial Colonialism" by foreigners into the why of police corruption in Tampico - which has been after all the doorway for foreign intervention since the 1500s . I might not have even forwarded my ideas had the issue not been localized in Tampico.

No Wiki here, just my own historic interpretation of current events regarding police corruption in Tampico.

I wish you all would take the time to search out Diego Riveras Murals, these murals are relevant to this conversation.

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Old 19 Oct 2013
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Tampico is not in Veracruz, it's in Tamaulipas. Veracruz and Boca del Rio are also as famous for corrupt cops, both transitos and otherwise, hence why we've had the military handling the policing for the past few years. It is slowly changing back.
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Old 30 Oct 2013
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I recently retired from the UK Police and I struggle to conjure up any reason to conduct, or engage in criminal activities (soliciting bribes etc) when I have sworn on my bible to upkeep the laws of my country.

As for thinking that everyone else does it, and using historical reasons to justify your actions, that is complete crap.

The money just goes into the corrupt cops pocket. It's criminal corruption, abuse of power and for personal gain. That's the end of it.

BTW: I have just exited Mexico having been riding around it for 3 weeks. Not a single problem.
New bike, Retired Nomad.
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Old 31 Oct 2013
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Ray, I think you would probably agree that the low pay, the high risk, and the lack of training are all contributing factors to police corruption in Mexico.
Awhile back, before the entire Veracruz/Boca del Rio police force and corresponding secretaries and low level bureaucrats were all summoned and fired from their positions, the average education level of what had been called "policing staff" was no higher than 8th grade. With the narcos controlling them and calling the shots, these people faced the infamous "plata o plomo" (silver or lead) question. Would they take the money or die for their ideals? That is the extreme scenario.
But what is at work in Tampico and always has been, is a simple municipal mafia where the cops have quotas and pay it up the line of command and some of the money reaches pretty far. Some of the bribes are also used for financing political campaigns. A few hundred pesos from every cop on every shift on every day of the year sure adds up fast.
Often times the cops will threaten foreigners who have no idea of their rights in Mexico. Now, the cynical amongst us will say that nobody has any rights in Mexico but there are certain rights guaranteed by federal law that will trump state law.
So what are these rights?
A friend of mine used to work for the Mexican PGR which is the equivalent of the "Mexican FBI". He quit, but before he left he had cards designed and printed for handing out to citizens of Mexico and visiting foreigners so they had a basic understanding of their rights. See below. You will need to read Spanish, but you can easily get the idea of each entry with just basic Spanish language skills. I am posting these as a simple service to riders, I keep my original card in my wallet at all times. Along with his personal phone number LOL! Foreigners are subjected to other specific laws that govern what they can and can't do in Mexico but everyone within the borders of the country have certain undeniable rights. Knowing these can keep you from being threatened and the victim of extortion attempts.
I am not a lawyer, just someone who rides here and I truly hate corrupt cops and politicians. If anyone wants to start a discussion of what the rights basically guarantee and their significance, let's do it.

Mexican consular and embassy officials are generally willing to answer questions, I have found them helpful. You can always print a copy of the card scans and have them interpret them for you if you politely ask them to in your home country. You might make a new friend, and you can mention the problems that other travelers have in Tampico.

I can't vouch for if the phone numbers still work, but the webpage should be up and running and the 1 800 number is for reporting a "denuncia" which certainly covers a cop trying to extort money from you.

If you are going to lay this on a cop in Tampico, be sure of your position. If you have, indeed, broken the law, then face the music and pay the fine not the bribe as it likely will be lower, much lower than what the cop wants. He is banking on you being afraid of him and his threat to detain you and the bike. If you are wrong, admit it, and go from there.
However, if you are not wrong and you are being the victim of extortion, understand what they can and cannot do by way of detaining you, and if they do detain you, the protocol they must follow. Again, they are hoping you have seen too many old movies with bandidos and other BS.
Timing is also important, lunch is usually between 2 and 4pm, there are day and afternoon shifts, there will be an ebb and flow to the presence of Tampico transitos. Frankly, the city is boring and not worth a second look, the new port is way outside of town, not taking the toll road around the city (the bypass is half price for bikes like 99.9% of all toll roads now in Mexico) can lead to problems. Recognize where cops like to hide, near traffic lights, blind corners, etc... blend in and go with the flow. Don't be afraid to let a bus or truck "block for you" by obscuring you from view of cops parked at the roadside, etc...
Hope some of this helps someone, someday, somewhere, and sometime.
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