Success as Mexico’s crime death toll begins to fall

DEATHS in Mexico linked to organised crime fell 14 per cent to 4,249 in the first four months of the presidency of Enrique Pena Nieto, who has vowed to reduce the menace posed by drug cartels.

The new figure refers to killings from December 2012 through to March 2013, and compares to the 4,934 organised crime-related killings during the same period a year earlier, said interior minister Miguel Osorio Chong.

“It’s still too early to adopt a triumphalist attitude,” said Mr Osorio Chong.

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“The trend is there, but it’s still early and it could surprise us and pick up tomorrow, or even fall.”

Mr Pena Nieto’s predecessor, Felipe Calderon, staked his reputation on bringing the drug gangs to heel, sending in the army to crush them soon after taking office in December 2006.

Homicides initially fell under Mr Calderon too, but by the end of his term more than 60,000 victims had been killed.