Drug cartels are taking over the tortilla industry in Mexico

Thirty-five businessmen, most associated with the tortilla industry, were kidnapped and tortured in the central region of Guerrero in the first two months of the year.
Thirty-five businessmen, most associated with the tortilla industry, were kidnapped and tortured in the central region of Guerrero in the first two months of the year.

By Oscar Balderas / Vice News

At a Guerrero tortilla shop called Los Mangos three months ago, three gun burst in and killed two workers. The Los Mangos tortilla shop, and its red door, have been closed since the shooting.

The deaths are just two of many associated with a drug cartel war on the tortilla industry in the southern state of Guerrero — where dozens of criminal groups fight for control of opium poppy plantations in the mountains and drug shipment and distribution spots in the cities.

Three days before, two other tortilla workers were killed in Cañada de los Amates, another Acapulco neighborhood. Two more were murdered on the same day in the Loma Bonita area.

Adrián Alarcón, regional president of the area Coparmex, said he lives under constant fear of death for trying to defend the threatened members of his union.

“Today the tortilla industry is kidnapped by them [criminal groups], just like what happened with public transport when they forced taxi drivers and bus drivers to become the hands and eyes of the narco,” said Alarcón.

“The industry is completely infiltrated,” he said. “The money that comes from the tortillas is used to buy weapons. We are financing them.”

https://news.vice.com/article/drug-cartels-are-taking-over-the-tortilla-business-in-mexico

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