Last Sunday, Jalisco Governor Aristoteles Sandoval ordered state police officers to assume control of public security in the Guadalajara suburb of Tlaquepaque after concerns that criminal organizations have infiltrated and corrupted the municipal force.
In an operation carried out at 7:30 a.m., state cops disarmed 735 municipal officers and drove them away to the barracks of the nearby police academy.
The switch over was carried out smoothly with the help of the Mexican armed forces. Sandoval said “scrupulous care” was taken not to infringe human rights.
The governor said the municipal officers will be evaluated and undergo a training course. Those that are deemed “clean” will be reintegrated back to their regular duties after a period of 30 days, he confirmed.
Although the center of Tlaquepaque is an upmarket tourist zone recognized for its arts and crafts, the populous municipality has many economically challenged zones within its limits. In a press briefing, Gonzalo Sanchez, the Jalisco government communications director, noted that Tlaquepaque is a key strategic zone for drug traffickers and dealers and that Sunday’s operation would help “diminish” lawlessness in other parts of the metropolitan area.
As of Monday, members of the female state police unit known as “Las Minervas” were seen patrolling the tourist center of Tlaquepaque and talking with traders and visitors. State patrol vehicles were also visible in other parts of the sprawling city suburb, although neighbors of some zones commented on the “minimal” police presence.