By Maria Abi-Habib and Natalie Kitroeff for The New York Times
(New York Times).- The five men were left prostrate on the sidewalk outside their black pickup truck, their shirts pulled over their heads, bare torsos pressed against the ground, and their bound hands spread before them almost in supplication.
The handwritten letter on the truck’s windshield read like a formal, albeit chilling, and remarkable apology: the Gulf Cartel Scorpion Group was very sorry that their members accidentally shot and killed two Americans and a Mexican bystander while kidnapping two more U.S. citizens.
The men were being offered up to the authorities, the letter said, to make amends for disturbing the peace. On Friday, Mexican prosecutors charged the five men in connection with the abduction and killings.
While Mexican drug cartels thrive in a vacuum of law and order that persists inside Mexico, there is an unspoken rule that many members of organized criminal groups are careful not to cross: do not touch Americans.
The United States takes attacks on its citizens seriously, and the response to such violence, on both sides of the border, can be ruinous for a Mexican criminal group.
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Source: The New York Times