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Author: Subject: Baja 1000 hi jacking
David K
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[*] posted on 11-20-2007 at 10:28 AM


Quote:
Originally posted by bajaguy
CBP Press officers

Send copies of the above post to:

Vincent Bond, Press Officer
Jurisdiction: Southern California/Mexico Ports of Entry
610 Ash Street
Suite 1200
San Diego, CA 92101Phone: (619) 744-5224
Fax: (619) 645-6641
Email: vincent.e.bond@customs.treas.gov



----------------------------------------------------------------------------


I know Vince Bond ... I made a copy of this thread and will drop it off to him today...

[Edited on 11-20-2007 by David K]




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[*] posted on 11-20-2007 at 10:38 AM


Hello. As I'm fresh on this topic- I'll chime in.

I'm very sorry to hear about this carjacking and what the family went through. Every time someone like me posts just how dangerous the toll road and border area is these days someone disrespectes the messenger. I'm tired of hearing "they only bother and kidnap businessmen- so just keep a low profile." That's bull. They rob/kidnap anyone these days that has more than they do- which is EVERY American, the day toursits are like a free gift to them.

The method used in this carjacking of the family is EXACTLY what we in Rosarito have been warning Americans about for months. I'm peeed off that these have been happening REGULARLY at night on the toll road for the last six months and NO USA AUTHORITIES OR MEDIA WILL WARN AMERICANS ABOUT IT! The MO: They pull you over at night with flashing police lights, another car pulls in front of you to block your escape and then they rob you, carjack you or worse. (At least these Americans didn't get shot like some others have). The bandits know that us law-abiding Americans will always pull over for the police. This happens at night mostly- so don't travel at night. If it does happen, don't stop- just keep driving until you get to a grocery store or other busy location and stop at the front door. The real police won't mind you doing this, but then again the real police arent out on the toll road at night protecting Americans'these days. They are just trying to stay alive themselves.

There is a security consultant guy who posts regular safety and driving escape tactics for americans on www.gringogazettenorth.com


Were these police who did it? Probably not. There are three levels of uniformed "police" here and none of them communicatre or work together, in fact they are fighting each other. They all have allies with different waring political parties (PRI/PAN) and the drug cartel. Even they don't know who to trust any more. They don't even know each other's uniforms well enough to tell a real one from an impersonator. The only thing they agree on are that Americans are fair game- they pull you over, terroize you, rob you, and then warn you NEVER to talk about it. Most of these incidents (and especially the express kidnappings) go unreported. I think people try to report these incidents at the border like this family did- but what you hear from the US Border Patrol is "you basically asked for it by going down there in the first place". They blame the victim and do nothing to help (the "go to macdonalds for help" attitude has to stop!).

I tried calling the news stations in San Diego a few weeks ago when the shootings of the American toursit family (and kidnapping of two spaniards with them) in Puerto Nuevo in broad daylight took place (there is a post on this site of mine somewhere about it). All three stattions told me that TJ and Rosarito was "not their market" and they don't cover it. When I stated that 10,000 americans live here, watch their news and ARE their market- they just said they would watch the wires for the story- which of course didn't happen because the Mexican government never releases the truth.

I don't know what the included insurance on the toll road covers, but there is some level of coverage that exists with a paid toll. Your USA insurance covers most incidents within 70 miles of the border or so- but that;s for passenger vehicles only. I would guess that trailers and ATV's are a different story. Whatever insurance there is- it will never repair the permanenet damange done to their family.
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bajaguy
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[*] posted on 11-20-2007 at 10:41 AM
Thanks David


The part that I am most concerned about is:

"The customs and immigration folks were less than helpful and even less sympathetic to our situation. While they did let us walk into the US they would not let us use their phone, bathroom nor have a drink of water. They directed us to the McDonald’s for assistance."

Maybe you could get Vince to be a regular on this board, or at least look at it once in a while.




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[*] posted on 11-20-2007 at 10:56 AM


All the talk about boycotts from folks like the ones on Baja Nomad and letters to Vincent Bond, etc will amount to nothing. There is no political will to do anything about this in Mexico - if we haven't figured that out by now, we never will.

HERE is the kind of thing that MIGHT, truly, have an effect:

http://www.race-dezert.com/forum/showthread.php?t=36312

When race teams like the McMillins start talking about not racing in Mexico any longer, I imagine folks like Sal Fish might start to pay attention. If the threat of the Baja races coming to a close or not attracting the high-end teams they do today doesn't do it, nothing will.
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[*] posted on 11-20-2007 at 11:05 AM


Who has the horsepower to contact the new Governor, the mayors, the police chiefs, tourism directors and police/military officials of TJ, Rosarito and Ensenada, and BCN state/federal officials and make them aware of these incidents???? Maybe set up a meeting of concerned residents/travelers.

It seems that there is a lot of complaining but nobody is talking to those who can effect/affect change

Maybe FDT can have these officials on his radio show????




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[*] posted on 11-20-2007 at 11:30 AM


bajaguy, I U2U'd you



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[*] posted on 11-20-2007 at 11:40 AM


Quote:
Originally posted by Roberto
All the talk about boycotts from folks like the ones on Baja Nomad and letters to Vincent Bond, etc will amount to nothing. There is no political will to do anything about this in Mexico - if we haven't figured that out by now, we never will.

HERE is the kind of thing that MIGHT, truly, have an effect:

http://www.race-dezert.com/forum/showthread.php?t=36312

When race teams like the McMillins start talking about not racing in Mexico any longer, I imagine folks like Sal Fish might start to pay attention. If the threat of the Baja races coming to a close or not attracting the high-end teams they do today doesn't do it, nothing will.


Never underestimate the power of a grass-roots level boycott, Roberto. All it takes is victims and the friends of victims to get media coverage, to talk to their travel agents, to post on boards with a combined readership of literally millions and pretty soon the numbers start dropping all over Mexico.

As the saying goes, "bad news travels fast".

Even without anything resembling an organized boycott, Mexico experienced a drop in tourism in 2006. Many had already made the choice to spend dollars elsewhere, as the cartel and police violence became more visible.

Tourism is/was the second largest industry in Mexico. Not the ancillary proceeds of a 4 day race.

The well-publicized boycott from ALL interested parties is the way to go.

[Edited on 11-20-2007 by Hook]




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Roberto
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[*] posted on 11-20-2007 at 11:55 AM


Quote:
Originally posted by Hook
Never underestimate the power of a grass-roots level boycott, Roberto.


I agree, generally, with your point. However, here are two points of my own.

The chances of a true "grass-roots level" boycott happening are slim and none. Just look at the reactions on this board to these types of reports for illustration.

Even if this happened, I really don't think the Mexican government gives a flip about this kind of tourism. The folks who fly to Cancun and go on the cruises - maybe, but that's a whole different ball of wax. Add to that the fact that the Mexican government is up to their ears with the drug cartels and the picture does not look good.

I hope, I'm wrong, frankly, because I'm pretty close to doing my own personal boycott - travelling alone in Baja or, worse yet, with my family is looking less and less worthwhile.

Quote:
Originally posted by Hook
Tourism is/was the second largest industry in Mexico. Not the ancillary proceeds of a 4 day race.


The reason I believe that a boycott by high-end teams could make a huge difference is more related to the level of publicity this would get than the impact of the loss of the revenue in Mexico. And I would like to have some numbers regarding the size of the revenue generated, directly and indirectly by all the SCORE races in the course of a year compared to you and me, and all the folks on this board, not going to Baja any longer - aside from the fact that that loss would be completely under the radar.

[Edited on 11-20-2007 by Roberto]
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[*] posted on 11-20-2007 at 12:19 PM


Just separate out the anti-boycott responses from people who have already invested in Baja or have businesses in Baja. They have a conflict of interest. But they are the only ones who can apply any local pressure. We have no rights.....except to choose to spend or not.

I have begun one, too. In my mind, I've avoided it for over a year, except the one albie trip. Now, it's official.




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[*] posted on 11-20-2007 at 12:36 PM


I believe Tecate Beer is the sponsor of the Baja 1000 If someone contacted them, they could possibly put on some pressure in the right places.



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[*] posted on 11-20-2007 at 01:18 PM


Quote:
Originally posted by Roberto

The chances of a true "grass-roots level" boycott happening are slim and none.

Probably true. At least as a movement by grass-roots individuals. Americans in cases such as this have three lethal faults. We don't learn from other's misfortune, we have no solidarity and we quickly forget. It will take group effort to get this ball rolling and at this point, the surfers are as close to that as we have. Perhaps we should start supporting them.
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[*] posted on 11-20-2007 at 01:19 PM


Point on the buffalo: the same could be said of nosotros los del norte and our migration to Baja.

Regarding los ladrones, maybe a massive letter/email/phone barrage to point out that visitors do spend a lot bucks in Baja and, who knows, word gets around and maybe there's a boycott to send another message. That message should include the harassment on the part of those Tijuana chotas (cops) as well.
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[*] posted on 11-20-2007 at 01:31 PM


Mexican officials are totally aware of the problems, they experience them too. And I can attest are painfully aware in a way that foreigners are not, here people have even less faith that change for Mexico is possible, that trait is an American concept not shared by many outside the USA.

Mexicans are looking toward outsiders to demonstrate the courage and know how to challenge the corruption. To Mexicans resolving a crime promptly, the right way is something so miraculous its almost frightening. The tools include, internet, photography, video and detailed stories which can be printed in places anonymously and demonstrate the corruption in detail in order to allow prosecution of corruption.

Prosecution requires jail time. We all know what a big expense that is as we have more jails in the US than anywhere in the world. Mexico doesn't have those resources either.

Basically, Mexico is totally corrupt, there is little but corruption. That is the system. There are almost no people willing to stand up for whats right because they would be killed by the bad guys. They say for every 100 pesos earned, 40% goes to pay off corruption and theft while 20-30% goes to the government for taxes so, that leaves 30% to pay for food, housing and miscellaneous.

Mexico can't change itself and most likely never will.

The truth is everything we love about Mexico is still here. Boating is nice, climbing and hiking is nice, playing in the ocean is nice and the majority of people are warm and pleasant. Its just the bad guys get in the way sometimes.
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[*] posted on 11-20-2007 at 01:36 PM


Quote:
Originally posted by gnukid
Mexican officials are totally aware of the problems, they experience them too. And I can attest are painfully aware in a way that foreigners are not, here people have even less faith that change for Mexico is possible, that trait is an American concept not shared by many outside the USA.

Mexicans are looking toward outsiders to demonstrate the courage and know how to challenge the corruption. To Mexicans resolving a crime promptly, the right way is something so miraculous its almost frightening. The tools include, internet, photography, video and detailed stories which can be printed in places anonymously and demonstrate the corruption in detail in order to allow prosecution of corruption.

Prosecution requires jail time. We all know what a big expense that is as we have more jails in the US than anywhere in the world. Mexico doesn't have those resources either.

Basically, Mexico is totally corrupt, there is little but corruption. That is the system. There are almost no people willing to stand up for whats right because they would be killed by the bad guys. They say for every 100 pesos earned, 40% goes to pay off corruption and theft while 20-30% goes to the government for taxes so, that leaves 30% to pay for food, housing and miscellaneous.

Mexico can't change itself and most likely never will.

The truth is everything we love about Mexico is still here. Boating is nice, climbing and hiking is nice, playing in the ocean is nice and the majority of people are warm and pleasant. Its just the bad guys get in the way sometimes.


And I, for one, think you can take that to the bank.

Thanks for that down to earth deduction Gnukid.




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[*] posted on 11-20-2007 at 01:38 PM


Quote:
Originally posted by gnukid
Its just the bad guys get in the way sometimes.

Once is too often but, it's becoming epidemic.
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[*] posted on 11-20-2007 at 01:50 PM


Quote:
Originally posted by gnukid
Mexican officials are totally aware of the problems, they experience them too. And I can attest are painfully aware in a way that foreigners are not, here people have even less faith that change for Mexico is possible, that trait is an American concept not shared by many outside the USA.

Mexicans are looking toward outsiders to demonstrate the courage and know how to challenge the corruption. To Mexicans resolving a crime promptly, the right way is something so miraculous its almost frightening. The tools include, internet, photography, video and detailed stories which can be printed in places anonymously and demonstrate the corruption in detail in order to allow prosecution of corruption.

Prosecution requires jail time. We all know what a big expense that is as we have more jails in the US than anywhere in the world. Mexico doesn't have those resources either.

Basically, Mexico is totally corrupt, there is little but corruption. That is the system. There are almost no people willing to stand up for whats right because they would be killed by the bad guys. They say for every 100 pesos earned, 40% goes to pay off corruption and theft while 20-30% goes to the government for taxes so, that leaves 30% to pay for food, housing and miscellaneous.

Mexico can't change itself and most likely never will.

The truth is everything we love about Mexico is still here. Boating is nice, climbing and hiking is nice, playing in the ocean is nice and the majority of people are warm and pleasant. Its just the bad guys get in the way sometimes.


As painful as it is to write. DITTO. :?:

I think we all realize what the Kid is saying, but I just love the place so much. The people are so kind and genuine. The bad is just so hard to overlook.




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[*] posted on 11-20-2007 at 02:06 PM


Thanks bajaguy--I sent a copy of the post to both addresses.
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[*] posted on 11-20-2007 at 02:08 PM


I know exactly how you feel Minnow.......
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[*] posted on 11-20-2007 at 02:32 PM


Quote:
Originally posted by comitan
Just what will they do with Mcmillin's Race car, it has to be very very recognizable even if painted?


The story read that it was a Weekend Warrior Toyhauler. I don't think they had a race car in there.

But the article did say they were forced to disconnect the trailer.

They did set out on foot though, wonder what happened to the trailer?

And what do the McMillans say about all of this when their own trailer is involved?

Nothing mentioned in Andy McMillans post on razedesert.com.

[Edited on 11-20-2007 by BajaWarrior]




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[*] posted on 11-20-2007 at 02:33 PM
So lets do something...


I read this incident with the family from the original message board it was posted on and I really dont know how to react.

Im angry, scared and saddened by all that has been going on.

I believe that a slow boycott has already begun. People are too afraid to cross the gauntlet and it has taken it's toll. The blatent way in which these crimes are escalating is whats so scary about it all.

I think the idea of getting the Secratary of tourism on the show is a good one and I truly believe that we can get him to respond, but there is a catch. We have had other people from the office on the show over the last year, but the big fish doesnt want to come unless there is big bait or at least thats how the office has responded in the past.

FDT does have an Avenue to get to the Sectratary's ear, as he has friends in certain positions, but tourism being a politacal type office, what they want is to see numbers. The larger the number the bigger the issue.

If you guys send Fernando all your emails, complaints and horror stories, Im absolutely sure he can poke a needle in there and make someone look this way.

There was a meeting today and many of the incidents were discussed. This I know, because a friend of Fernando's who was in attendnce, called during the meeting this morning for some info about another topic he had forgotten to take. This same friend had the printed email conversations with fernando about this robbery and a couple other reports to show the gravity of the situation. (yes, I do easdrop sometimes, sorry honey)

Calling in favors is the way it works around here. These certain people/friends arent that small of fish in the tourism arena, So an ear with the new Secratary of tourism isnt totally impossable.

With a folder or two full of letters directed at the Secratary, he may have no choice but to respond and it would give Fer just the leverage he needs to get him to respond on the air or otherwise.

When I say letters directed at: I mean addressed to him directly!
"Dear Mr. Secratary of Tourism......"

If anything I know Fernando CAN get them on his desk, one way or another.

Just a small note while im on the subject. This has been a large topic discussion with Fer his amigos (ive read the emails, heard the phone conversations) and they are all very aware of whats happenning and have said, in one fashion or another, the big wigs are running scared about the losing more tourist dollars. If there is ever a time to slam them with this, it's now, while the new guy is fresh and eager to create an impression. In all honesty I get the impression they really arent too sure of how or what to do, but know something has to be done.

Send as many emails as you can to fernado@ultimatebaja.com

There are never any guarantees as this is a whole new office, but if they are scared I think that, in itself, is a huge motivator.

(Just wanted to add something someone brought to my attention. Any email or corespondance will be completely anonamous. He would need volume of.. not names or email addresses. All would be presented with complete anoninimity and not accociated with this board or any other.
The point would be to get the person to go on air and respond live to any questions you all have and nothing more.)

[Edited on 11-21-2007 by MrsFDT]




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