Cases of military abuse documented by Mexico's National Human Rights Commission (CNDH) 2007-2011

  • Murder of a family

    Five people were killed by soldiers in Sinaloa de Leyva, Sinaloa, when they were traveling in a van and shot by soldiers who were apparently drinking alcohol and using recreative drugs. Two of the killed persons were children.
  • Torture against Mexican migrant

    A group of Mexican migrants found on the slopes of Mount La Lesna, the U.S. border, waiting for someone to take them to Phoenix when two Mexican army vehicles arrived and pointed a gun asking who was their leader and where was the marijuana. The soldiers put on one of the migrants' mouth a tube and forced him to drink alcohol, causing him to vomit. They also put on his nails pieces of wood, which soldiers moved to make him suffer, until they pulled the nails. He was left unconscious.
  • Torture

    A man was watching a movie at home in Morelia, Michoacan, along with two others when soldiers stormed the house and began to beat him. They asked him if he was "Chino Güenses," he said no. The military covered his face with a wet clothes and gave electric shocks to the testicles. They beat him for 30 minutes and then took to a military zone, where they continued torturing him. He was later transferred to the facilities of the Attorney General's Office, which send him to see a doctor.
  • Murder

    Soldiers who traveled near the town of Naco in the state of Sonora, detained three people who moved to work on a ranch. One of those persons was missing from the day of the arrest and the other two were transferred to the Federal Public Ministry in the city of Agua Prieta, Sonora. The dead body of the missing person was found on highway one day later. His body was beaten and with injures which probably caused his death.
  • Torture

    A man was intercepted by soldiers in Uruapan, Michoacán, who asked for his ID. When they realised he was a resident of the town of Chauz, he was arrested. The soldiers removed a bracelet, a watch, three rings, a chain, a medal and 3,000 pesos from him. He was then transferred to the a military zone where he was left naked with a cloth bag on his head. Soldiers grabbed his hands and feet and threw water in his face as he was beaten in the abdomen.
  • Illegal search and torture

     Mexican soldiers entered the home of a man without a warrant in the municipality of Tanhuato, Michoacán. They damaged his property, robbed some valuables belongings, arrested him and tortured him. The military placed a towel on his face and poured some water, and gave him electric shocks to the genitals. He was referred to the civil authorities on the grounds of possessing weapons.
  • Torture

    Two men were detained by soldiers in the municipality of La Huacana in the state of Michoacán. The man showed signs of torture when they were presented to the civilian authorities days later.
  • Murder of a 17-year-old

    Soldiers had set a perimeter security fence and opened fire on a van in which two teenagers were traveling 17 to 19 years old in Huetamo, Michoacán. The youngest of the teenagers died.
  • Torture

    On January 31, 2008 at 23:30 am, two men were arrested by soldiers in the town of Lerdo, in the state of Durango, being subjected to physical violence and verbal abuse, and later transferred to military installations, where they were subjected to torture. 36 hours they were taken to the civilian authorities in Torreón, Coahuila.
  • Death of a civilian

    When trying to stop the march of a vehicle, soldiers fired their weapons and killed a civilian and injured another one in the city of Reynosa, Tamaulipas.
  • Three persons were detained

    Three persons were detained by Mexican Army personnel at a bar in the municipality of Zinapécuaro, in the Mexican state of Michoacán, at around 12:30pm. They were told to get down on the ground, they were searched, interrogated, beaten and taken as detainees. At approximately 12:00am of the same day, the soldiers entered a house and detained another person. All the detainees were taken to a military base, being beaten and accused of kidnapping. They were placed at the disposal of the agent of th
  • Illegal retention and torture

    Three persons were detained by soldiers at a bar in the municipality of Zinapécuaro, in the state of Michoacán, at around 12:30pm. They were told to get down on the ground, they were searched, interrogated, beaten and taken as detainees. At approximately 12:00am, the soldiers entered a house and detained another person. All detainees were taken to a military base, they were beaten and accused of kidnapping. They were placed at the disposal of the civilian authorities 10 hours later.
  • Murder

    At approximately 9pm in the community Santiago de los Caballeros, municipality of Badiraguato, in the state of Sinaloa, military elements fired their guns agains a Hummar vehicle. Four civilians were killed.
  • Illegal detention and torture

    Two men were detained by soldiers in their home at Ciudad Juarez, Chihuahua past midnight. The soldiers illegally detained them for 70 hours before taking them to the civilian authorities. The men were tortured: they were beaten and tied, and plastic bags were put over their heads so they could not breathe. One of the victims received electric shocks in his right foot, and one toe had to be amputated because of this.
  • Illegal detention of 22 police officers

    22 policemen and policewomen were detained by soldiers in Ciudad Juárez, Chihuahua. First they were told they were going to do some tests, but they were really being held as witnesses of an investigation. The officers were held in military facilities without the chance of consulting their juridical situation with a civilian authority. There was not any warrant order for their detention.
  • Attack to police officers

    Police officers of Ciudad Juárez, Chihuahua, received a telephone call asking for assistance at 12:31am. They took a patrol pick-up, with turret and siren on. However, they were overtaken by a military convoy that shot them without warning, causing serious injury to the driver of the patrol. The military arrested them, took their belongings and took them to military facilities. The soldiers then took them to the civilian authorities.
  • Detention at a funeral and torture

    Soldiers arrived to a cemetery in Villa Ahumada, Chihuahua where a funeral was being held. They closed the place and detained and beat eight people who were taken to a military base. The soldiers retained for 24 hours and tortured them with electric shocks and hits.
  • Illegal retention and torture

    Four men were at the car washing business El Coyote when Mexican soldiers entered the place. They interrogated them and passed electric current through their body using a device known as chicharra, applying it on their abdomen and back. Then, the soldiers took the tortured men inside an old house, where they asked them about some arms. The soldiers retained them for 22 hours before taking them to the civilian authorities.
  • Illegal retention and torture

    Soldiers were introduced to the home of a man who was transferred to military premises in Ciudad Juárez, Chihuahua, where he was beaten in different parts of the body and given electric shocks. He was taken to the civilian authorities hours later.
  • Two shot, one injured

    Two people died and another person was injured as a result of a shooting by Mexican soldiers in the town of Santiago Lachivia, in the Mexican state of Oaxaca.
  • Illegal search and retention

    Around 35 hooded soldiers entered to the home of a married couple taking cash, jewellery and a vehicle. The husband was pointed in the head while the soldiers destroyed the property, and then was taken with them. He was transferred to the civilian authorities on August 26.
  • Torture

    Ten soldiers came into a man’s house and began to beat him so he confessed possession of weapons and drugs in Durango. The soldiers threw gas over his face and put bags over his head. He said he was held to the civilian authorities one day after.
  • Illegal retention and torture of four men

    Four men were illegally retained and tortured by the Mexican Army. Two of the victims had injuries in the rectum and colon, and wood chips were found in their gluteus, as a broom stick was introduced through their anus. The soldiers wanted them to confess their relation with various crimes.
  • Torture

    A man was fishing when soldiers detained him and used their feet to hit him in the stomach and testicles. They loaded him onto a military vehicle in which they undressed him, continuing the beating, threatening to rape him and accussed him of participating in a kidnapping. He was then taken to the military facilities at Huetamo, Michoacan where they drenched with cold water, beat him and placed a bag containing chilies with vinegar around his head. He was taken to the civilian authorities.
  • Illegal detention, intimidation and torture of a couple that was trying to reach the hospital

    At approximately 10am a couple left their home in Ixtlán del Río, Nayarit, to go to a Red Cross hospital. As they were traveling in a Cheyenne truck they were intercepted by soldiers and federal and state police officers who beat and intimidated them, forcing them to return home. They entered their house without a warrant order and took money and other valuable things. They threatened to kill them if they reported what happened.
  • Enforced disappearance of two brothers

    Two brothers were detained by soldiers at his home in Ciudad Juarez Chihuahua and taken away accused of being involved with organised crime. There is no track of the brothers since their detention. Their parents have presented denounces for the crime of forced disappearance.
  • Woman shot

    Soldiers performed reconnaissance in the town of Felipe Carrillo Puerto, in the municipality of Buenavista Tomatlán, Michoacán, with the aim of apprehending alleged criminals. They fired their weapons on the streets and one of the bullets hit the head of one woman who became unconscious and was not given first aid by the soldiers. She died in a city hospital on March 13 due to multiple organ failure caused by the brain death brought upon her by the penetration of the firearm projectile.
  • Illegal detention and intimidation

    A man was driving his car when the vehicle was shot six times by soldiers in the municipality of Guerrero, Chihuahua. The man lost control of the vehicle and crashed into another car which was parked, hitting himself on the head. When he tried to get out of the vehicle, a soldier pointed a gun at him and ordered him to lie down on the ground. More soldiers arrived, they kicked his ribs and questioned him. Some neighbours arrived and he soldiers told them to be silent about what happened.
  • Illegal detention and torture of a man

    A man was illegally detained for 64 hours and tortured by Mexican soldiers in Ciudad Juarez, Chihuahua. The soldiers took off his clothes leaving him naked; they beat him, gave him electric shocks in different parts of the body and squeezed his tongue and nose with forceps.
  • Torture

    Soldiers detained two persons in Ciudad Juarez, Chihuahua when they were on their way to visit a client. They were subsequently taken to the military facilities of the 20th Motorized Cavalry Regiment, where they were tortured in order to obtain their confession accepting they had been involved in several crimes. The victims were beaten, that they received electric shocks; plastic bags were put over their faces, and were humiliated and intimidated.
  • False accussation

    An 18-year-old gave a friend of his a ride after having some drinks. When he was driving back home, soldiers told him to stop, but he refused, fearing they might take the vehicle. Soldiers shot him and hurt him, forcing him to stop. They accussed him of driving a suspicious vehicle and of carrying weapons and drugs, even when he was carrying a bottle of wine.
  • Torture of an indigenous man

    An indigenous man and his wife were walking in the municipality of San Dionisio Ocotepec, Oaxaca, when they asked for a ride. When they arrived to a military checkpoint, the driver got out of the vehicle and ran away. The soldiers came into the vehicle and pointed their guns towards the indigenous man. They would not let him explain what he was doing there; they brutally beat him and submerged his head into a trough for cattle. He was left unconscious and transferred to a hospital.
  • Torture

    Soldiers burst into the home of a man while he was sleeping in the municipality of Unión de Isidoro Montes de Oca, Guerrero, and questioned him about weapons and about his neighbours. When he replied he had no weapons and he did not know his neighbours, they arrested him and beat him, causing a number of wounds. He was taken to the Agent of the Public Prosecutor of the Federation in Acapulco, where a medical expert certified that he had injuries that put life at risk.
  • Illegal detention and torture

    Soldiers detained three men in the towns of La Estancia and Las Mesas, in Culiacán, in the state of Sinaloa. The soldiers found wooden boxes, a roll of plastic, paper and scissors in the men's vehicle, which the soldiers assumed were to pack marihuana. The soldiers beat them while they asked them where the drugs were. They introduced a flashlamp through the anus of one of the detained man. The soldiers kept the men for almost ten hours before taking them to the civil authorities.
  • Torture

    Members of the Mexican Army detained a man in Ciudad Juarez, Chihuahua, handing him over to an agent of the Federal Public Prosecutor’s Office within the area due to his probable involvement in committing crimes against health. Medical appraisers from the Attorney General’s Office certified that the man presented visible external physical violence markings before giving the corresponding declaration.
  • Journalist abused

    A journalist was physically and verbally attacked by soldiers and was wounded as a result. This happened while he was reporting on a road an accident in Ciudad Juarez, Chihuahua, involving military personnel and civil servants who were performing public safety duties to assist the municipal authority of the aforementioned location.
  • Disabled teenager attacked and injured

    An intellectually disabled 16-year-old attended a party on in in the municipality of La Unión, Guerrero. He collected aluminium cans and upon leaving the place at approximately 1am the next day, with a black plastic bag containing the cans, soldiers who apparently were carrying out a raid, shot him, injuring his knee. The party guests tried to help the teenager but the military prevented them from doing so. He was transferred to military facilities and received medical care 24 hours later.
  • Murder in Tlapa

    Soldiers of the 93rd Infantry Battalion in Tlapa de Comonfort, Guerrero signalled for a passenger bus to stop. The bus stopped and the soldiers asked the passengers to leave the vehicle and proceeded to carry out checks. One man was arrested. Passengers were asked to board the bus once again, after which the driver started up the engine and continued his journey. But the military officers once again signalled for him to stop, he did not stop, they shot their guns and killed one person.
  • Enforced disappearance and murder

    Soldiers detained and beat a man when he was in his ranch in the municipality of Los Reyes, in the Mexican state of Michoacán. His family reported his disappearance to the local authorities. On 8 July 2009 his dead body was found in a wayside.
  • Torture of a prison intern

    An intern was tortured by members of the Mexican Army in the social Rehabilitation Center in the municipality of Aquilés Serdán, in the state of Chihuahua. The soldiers handcuffed him, threw him on the floor, beat him with bottles and placed a plastic bag on his head while they gave him electric shocks and asked him “who he worked with and where the guns were,” as well as threatening to beat him again at a later time and “sow drugs” in his belongings.
  • Detention of journalists

    Four journalists were detained by soldiers in Monclova, Coahuila when covering an operation carried out by the army and the police. They were released one day after.
  • Murder of undocumented migrant

    Mexican soldiers shot a vehicle that transported Central American migrants in the municipality of Comitan, in the Mexican state of Chiapas. A salvatorian man was killed and four other migrants were injured.
  • Illegal retention and torture

    Three persons were detained at their homes in Ciudad Lerdo, Durango, by soldiers and policemen that did not had a warrant order. They were beaten and forced to board government vans and were then taken to the facilities occupied by military personnel. They underwent physical and psychological mistreatment in order to reveal information related to various crimes. The victims were brought before the civilian authorities 25 hours after their detention.
  • Torture and murder

    Soldiers detained two men at their home in the municipality of Balancán, in the state of Tabasco. The soldiers tied their hands, covered their eyes and transported them to a military base in Tenosique, Tabasco. In the military base the detained men recognised the voices of two of their friends who had also been detained. The men were beaten and tortured. One of the men heard that one soldier said one of the detained persons had no pulse. The local papers informed that a person died.
  • Enforced disappearance

    A young man and two young women were detained by soldiers in the municipality of Buenaventura, in the state of Chihuahua. The soldiers took them to an unknown destination. It is still unknown where these persons are and if they are alive.
  • Illegal detention

    Without presenting a search warrant, nor even identifying themselves, soldiers and municipal police officers entered to a residence in the municipality of Guadalupe y Calvo, in the state of Chihuahua. A group of women and children were present at the scene. These individuals were threatened with their lives, while their possessions were destroyed and their money was stolen. The soldiers and policemen wanted them to say they were criminals.
  • Murder of an engenieer woman

    A female engineer died as a result of an armed combat between soldiers and members of a criminal gang in Monterrey, in the state of Nuevo Leon. Her death occurred the same day that postgraduate students from the Tec de Monterrey were killed in an armed conflict. She had just left a restaurant and was being transported in a car when the shootings began.
  • Postgraduate students murdered

    Two Tec de Monterrey postgraduate students died in a clash between gunmen and the Mexican army when they were leaving campus at midnight. According to the CNDH, they were beaten while they were dying, and the crime scene was manipulated. This case is explained in detail in HUMAN RIGHTS notepad.
  • Two children aged 5 and 9 killed by soldiers

    13 people who rode in a van were attacked with gunfire and grenades in the Nuevo Laredo-Reynosa road, in the Mexican state of Tamaulipas. The shots caused the dead of Martin and Brayan Almanza, aged 5 and 9. The army stated that members of criminal gangs had killed the boys, but later, the CNDH determined that it were the soldiers who killed them. This case is explaine in detail in HUMAN RIGHTS notepad.
  • Murder of a married couple

    A a married couple left their workplace to have lunch in the municipality of Anáhuac, in the state of Nuevo León. They walked to their car, where they would have lunch, and soldiers and gunmen began fighting. The couple had to get out of the car when two gunmen approached, they ran away and the husband was shot. The soldiers killed all the gunmen, and when the couple came out from their hiding place calling for some help, the soldiers shot them and killed them.
  • Murder of a peasant

    A man was shot by a soldier while he was herding cattle in the municipality of Santa María Otáez, in the state Durango. The military personnel transported him to a military hospital in the city of Mazatlán, in the state of Sinaloa. Then he was transferred to a civilian hospital where he died.
  • Two murdered and three injured from military shots

    Military officers shot a vehicle and injured 5 people in the municipality of Apodaca, in the state of Nuevo Leon. The vehicle had been ordered to stop, and was travelling south on the Monterrey-Laredo motorway, between the north-eastern relief road and the Santa Rosa motorway. A15-year-old, died, whilst another injured person, aged 52, died hours later. Other three persons were injured by fire arm bullets.