Mexico’s Defense Department announced on Saturday that 16 Mexican soldiers will stand trial on military charges in relation to the killing of five men in Nuevo Laredo, a Mexican border city, last month.
16 Mexican Soldiers Arrested
Mexico’s Defense Department announced on Saturday that 16 soldiers will stand trial on military charges in relation to the killing of five men in Nuevo Laredo, a Mexican border city, last month.
The Mexican soldiers were arrested on Thursday and are presently being held at a military prison in Mexico City while awaiting trial before a military tribunal, the Associated Press reported.
The Mexican soldiers have been charged with disobeying “military discipline.”
These military trials for the Mexican soldiers will proceed alone from any charges that may be brought by civilian prosecutors.
According to Mexican law, cases involving soldiers’ misconduct towards civilians must go through civilian courts, but separate charges can be filed in military tribunals.
President’s Reaction to Mexican Soldiers’ Arrest
Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador described the killings involving the Mexican soldiers, which were captured on security camera footage on May 18, as an apparent “execution” in the city dominated by cartels and located across from Laredo, Texas.
The video showed a black pickup truck crashing into a wall at full speed, followed by a military truck ramming into its passenger side. The occupants of the truck were forcefully dragged out, kicked, and forced against a wall.
They were later found dead.
While López Obrador maintains that the army has undergone positive changes, incidents such as these killings involving the Mexican soldiers continue to raise concerns and are portrayed as isolated acts by rogue soldiers.
The forthcoming trials of the 16 Mexican soldiers involved in the recent killings will shed further light on the extent of accountability and justice within Mexico’s military system.