Mexico: “Show of Efficiency Generates Phony Numbers in Marching Powder Bust”

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Ye gods! The massive magic mountain of money of Zhenli Ye Gon, accused Sino-Paraguayan pseudoephedrine philanthropreneur and “man behind the meth.”
Source: http://www.dea.gov

Official sources acknowledged that the difference in the two figures was caused by the eagerness of certain public employees to divulge the information “in order to look good to their superiors.”

Rick: How can you close me up? On what grounds?
Renault: I’m shocked, shocked to find that there is gambling going on here!
Croupier: Your winnings, sir.
Renault: Oh, thank you very much. Everybody out at once.

En Colima sólo se decomisaron dos toneladas de seudoefedrina: PGR (La Jornada): In an item for the W$J’s Numbers Guy — I enjoy that blog of theirs — the Mexican federal tax authority has to explain that rumors of a big rock candy mountain of meth and Ecstasy precursor were greatly exaggerated.

File under governmental public relations nightmares.

El decomiso reciente de un cargamento de seudoefedrina dejó en claro la falta de coordinación entre las dependencias encargadas de combatir el narcotráfico y, en consecuencia, la diferencia en la cantidad de droga decomisada.

The recent seizure of a shipment of pseudoephedrine reveals the lack of coordination among government agencies in charge of combating narcotrafficking and, as a consequence, [explains wildly] divergent reports on the quantity of controlled substances seized.

En principio, el Servicio de Administración Tributaria (SAT) informó del aseguramiento de 514 costales de 30 kilos cada uno, con un total de 15 toneladas 420 kilogramos de seudoefedrina. Sin embargo, ayer la Procuraduría General de la República (PGR) y la Secretaría de Marina dieron a conocer que el peso real de la droga decomisada es de casi 13 toneladas menos.

At first, the tax authority (SAT) reported the seizue of 514 sacks containing 30 kg each, for a total of 15 metric tons and 420 kg of pseudoephedrine. However, the federal attorney’s office and the Secretary of the Navy announced that the real volume of controlled substance seized is some 13 metric tons less than that.

El pasado lunes, el SAT, organismo que depende de la Secretaría de Hacienda, informó en un comunicado de prensa que, en coordinación con personal de la Subprocuraduría de Investigación Especializada en Delincuencia Organizada (SIEDO), se habían asegurado en Manzanillo, Colima, 514 costales, y que eso constituía un “importante aseguramiento de seudoefedrina”. Fuentes oficiales aseguraron que el peso del cargamento ascendía a 15 toneladas 420 kilogramos.

On Monday, the SAT, a division of the Treasury Secretary, issued a press release reporting that, in coordination with SIEDO, it has seized those 514 sacks in Manzanillo, Colima, saying this constituted “a significant seizure of” the controlled substance. Official sources confirmed that the weigh seized was 15.42 metric tons.

Sin embargo, Marina y la PGR emitieron un comunicado de prensa conjunto en el que precisan, primero, la participación de la secretaría en el operativo, y segundo, que habían sido decomisados 112 sacos de seudoefedrina que eran transportados en un contenedor de un buque de bandera liberiana que arrojó “un peso ministerial de un mil 997.6 kilogramos”.

The Navy and the PGR, however, issued a joint press release in which they clarify, first of all, that they also participated in the operation and that, secondly, that the seizure was of 112 sacks inside a container aboard a Liberian freighter, amounting to “[about two metric tons] in all.”

Fuentes oficiales reconocieron que la diferencia en las cifras radica en que algunos funcionarios se apresuraron a dar a conocer la información “para quedar bien con sus superiores”.

Official sources acknowledged that the difference in the two figures was caused by the eagerness of certain public employees to divulge the information “in order to look good to their superiors.”

La Secretaría de Marina y la PGR precisaron que personal de la sexta Región Naval, con sede en Manzanillo, Colima, brindó apoyo a la Inspección Fiscal Aduanera de ese puerto y al agente del Ministerio Público de la Federación (MPF) para la apertura y revisión de contenedores provenientes de Busan, Corea del Sur, a bordo del buque Clan Tan Gun de bandera liberiana, el cual continuó su navegación con destino a Puerto Quetzal, Guatemala.

The Navy department and the PGR said that personnel from the Sixth Naval district, based out of Manzanillo, lent support to the Customs Inspection Service at the port and an agent of the federal attorney’s office (MPF) in opening and searching containers arriving from Busan, South Korean, on board the good ship Clan Tan Gun, flying a Liberian flag, which then sailed on to Puerto Quetzal, Guatemala.

El SAT informó la noche del lunes que la seudoefedrina había “sido embarcada en los Emiratos Árabes con destino final al puerto de Manzanillo”.

The SAT reported on Monday evening that the pseudoephedrine “had been loaded in the United Arab Emirates with Manzanillo as its final destination.”

I immediately think of that Veja magazine story from a month or so back about why the UAE is “a bastion of progress in the Middle East.”

Durante la inspección realizada el 13 del actual por el agente del MPF y personal de la Policía Federal, apoyados por personal naval en un dispositivo de seguridad, fue localizada en un contenedor –que según manifiesto de carga contenía carbonato de calcio– una sustancia blanca que resultó positiva a las pruebas iniciales como seudoefedrina, arrojando una cantidad total de 112 sacos y un peso ministerial de mil 997.6 kilogramos de la citada sustancia, la que dio positivo en las pruebas periciales definitivas.

During the inspection conducted on October 13 by the MPF agent and federal police personnel, supported by Navy personnel as a security measure, a white substance was found inside a container that, according to its bill of lading, contained calcium carbonate. The substance tested positive in initial tests for pseudoephedrine and amounted to 112 sacks weighing 1,997.6 kg in all. Further testing conclusively established the substance as [a prime ingredient in cooking up club drugs and “the poor man’s cocaine,” crystal meth.]

Risk management takeaway: The show of efficiency — “round up the usual suspects” — is apparently alive and well.

Which is why you really, really need to boil content coming down the content pipeline, lest you consume something that will have you talking to pink elephants or giant rabbits that AREN’T REALLY THERE.

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