Van Of U.S. Murder Suspect Found In Baja

There was a break in the Colusa County murder case of Karen Garcia when investigators found the van her suspected killer/boyfriend escaped in, right here in Baja.

Unfortunately, the van was being driven by someone else, who said that had bought the van a while ago possibly from the suspect, Salvador Vaca Garcia Jr.

Colusa Police Chief Joshua Fitch said that the back is already back in Colusa County after being towed back to Northern California on Friday.

“It was on the Mexican side of the border…is my understanding somewhere near Tijuana,” Fitch said. “It was a small town near Tijuana.”

By his statement it can be deducted that the van was found either in Tecate or Rosarito, although Garcia is thought to have fled Baja already.

If you have any information regarding the whereabouts of Salvador Vaca Garcia Jr or want to report any sightings call US 1-877-926-8332.

You can also join the JusticeForKaren Facebook page for more information regarding her case by clicking here.

Puerto Nuevo Restaurateurs Unite Against New Calimax

The surprising construction of a new Calimax supermarket in Puerto Nuevo has left restaurant owners in Puerto Nuevo worried about the gastronomic calling of the area.

They say that the new store goes against the history and gastronomic development of Puerto Nuevo and will just exacerbate the ongoing parking problem.

Until this moment, there has been no official statement from Calimax saying that they are building the store and although Aldo Lopez, head of Urban Control for Rosarito, has stated that there will be a supermarket there, he hasn’t gone all the way to say it’s going to be a Calimax and he has even said that there is currently no land use permit given yet.

Lobster town restaurateurs said that they will fight the company legally in order to stop construction of the store with help of their recently created “Technical Committee for Puerto Nuevo”.

“We are not opposing the economic development of Puerto Nuevo, we just want them to do it in another area, because it’s going to change the essence of the historic and gastronomic center of Puerto Nuevo” stated Rosa Marias Plascencia, owner of a restaurant in the area.

With information from Juan Pablo Sebastián | Ecos de Rosarito

Ensenada Plans to Shield the Wine Valley After Business Owners Complain

Authorities from the three levels of government (city, state and federal), agreed to strengthen security in the wine valley by opening a second security booth, working on public lighting and programming more security checkpoints in a meeting with business owners from the valley.

Attendants to the meeting told authorities about the increase of non-violent thefts that they have suffered lately and asked authorities to prioritize and solve the issue as soon as possible.

Ensenada mayor, Marco Antonio Novelo, emphasized the importance of filing a report with authorities for them to know about the problem and work on a solution as most crimes in the city go unreported. A report by Ethos Public Policy Lab published last year stated that 94% of crimes in the whole country go unreported because people think it’s just a waste of time.

The city has been strongly pushing the wine valley to national and international tourists for a few years now and gets pretty worried when there are crime problems over there, sometime getting residents of other parts of Ensenada, specially the low-income areas, disgruntled at the lack of surveillance there.

Local Artists from Rosarito and Tijuana Do Murals In Greece

Athens is the city where the first “Mexico – Greece Youth Encounter” was carried out. The event is an space to encourage dialog and exchange between young artists from both countries during the month of October.

On an invitation from the Mexican Embassy in Greece, Jaime Carbó, the multi disciplinarian muralist from Rosarito, was invited to paint an urban mural in the Irini subway station. Irini translates as peace from Greek, and its the first station that gives access to the Olympic stadium in Athens.

From Tijuana, Alfredo “Libre” Gutierrez, part of the “Hecho en Mexico” graffiti collective, traveled there and painted a tram along with Carbó.

Gutierrez will also work with a group of migrants to create an sculpture as a token of gratitude towards Greece.

The artwork will be donated to the Attica municipality that has been known for its support and acceptance of migrants.

T.G.I. Friday’s Causes Uproar In Tijuana

A bad choice in Halloween decoration caused uproar between clients of the Tijuana location of the american restaurant T.G.I. Friday’s this past week.

Users in social media showed their indignation after pictures of their choice of Halloween decoration, a black bag taped in the shape of a body that was placed on the entrance stairs of the restaurant, went viral.

One Facebook user said he thought that the decoration was in very bad taste, and a bad joke for the thousands of people that have lost a loved one to the growing violence in the area.

Others offered insults and accused the Tijuana location of being insensitive and even idiotic.

Some people said that they didn’t even know it was a decoration and thought that someone had left a dead body in there for real. Unfortunately not an uncommon sight in Baja these days.

After seeing all the controversy generated by the decoration, the restaurant decided to remove the decoration and publish a statement on their Facebook page:

“Friday’s is a franchise, and as every year, for the upcoming Halloween and Day of the Dead celebrations, there was a misunderstanding in one of the decorations we chose for our front door, regarding that we apologize in the name of everyone that works in T.G.I. Friday’s, and specially to the people that were bothered by it, it was not our intention and the decoration was already removed. Thank you for your comments and support.”

This is their original statement (in Spanish):

ATM Bandits Are Back! Did They Ever Leave?

A new card robbing scheme has been caught on camera recently and there are reports that is being used all over Mexico.

This is the way the scheme works:

  1. A person gets close to you while you are using the ATM so he/she can visualize your PIN number while you type it in and leaves.
  2. A second person drops money on the floor near the victim and starts picking it up.
  3. While the victim gets down to help the other person to pick up the money or just gets distracted on what’s going on, a third person removes the card from the ATM hides it and walks away.

In some of the videos, the victims actually walk to the perpetrators and confront them but when they categorically deny it, the victims just walk over to the ATM again to check if they just didn’t leave the card there.

Of course the maximum permitted cash is withdrawn from the ATM within minutes of the card theft.

Victims have been, on the majority, women. Be careful out there, check your surroundings when typing your PIN code and don’t get distracted and leave your card unattended at any moment!

This are some of the videos, they don’t need translation this time, as these images talk for themselves:

Photo by Enrique Botello

Baja 1000 Temporarily Suspended: Score International Fined $27K by PROFEPA

Score International was hit with a fine of around $27,000 USD and in order to guarantee the payment of the fine, the permits for the coming Baja 1000 race where suspended.

PROFEPA (The federal agency for the protection of the environment) was the one to fine Score because, they say, the race last year passed through unauthorized protected areas in the “Valle de los Cirios” (That’s the valley south of the city of Ensenada that has huge cacti everywhere).

Valle de los Cirios in Ensenada, a natural protected area.

The agency says race participants destroyed several specimens of protected cacti from the lophocerus schotti species.

Due to this violations, PROFEPA issued a temporary suspension of activities to Score International S. de R.L. de C.V., which effectively suspends their right to do the race until they pay the fine.

In November of 2014, PROFEPA announced that it was fining the Baja 1000 race organizers for about $162,000 USD for the same violations, although there is no public knowledge about the fine being paid or not, since it was contested in court.

 

With information from El Vigia

Airbnb Will Now Charge 3% Lodging Tax in Baja Norte

Tourism authorities, headed by Oscar Escobedo, announced that they have signed an agreement with Airbnb to start collecting the 3% lodging tax that is normally charged to all hotel room reservations.

This tax is, allegedly, used to promote the destination and bring more tourists to the destination but, of course, this has been a matter of discussion before as not all hotel owners agree on what the government uses the money for.

Airbnb has been available in Baja Norte for a few years now, and is the 11th state where an agreement to collect this tax is signed in less than a year. From January to July this year, over 200,000 travelers used Airbnb to stay in one of the 4,600 available accommodations in Northern Baja.

In 8 months, the company was able to collect about 2.2 million USD from this 3% tax in the state of Quintana Roo, with that in mind it is expected that the remaining Mexican states will start signing agreements with Airbnb to collect this tax.

Rafael Garcia, president of the Mexican association of hotels and motels, although happy that more and more states are charging this tax (that they have always had to pay), says that more needs to be done to level the playing field, as they still have to pay a lot more taxes than Airbnb hosts.

According to researchers from the Anahuac University, about 272 million USD  were lost last year in not charged income tax from Airbnb rentals, a tax that regular hotels do have to pay.

130 Federales Arrive In Baja


Just last week 130 elements of the Federal Police of the “Gendarmerie” Division, were deployed here in Baja mainly in Tijuana and San Quintin.

Juan Carlos Moran, head of the federal police in Baja, stated that the deployment of this group of police was in response to the increased requests from local authorities and the private sector regarding the increasing drug crime problems that have been going on.

Moran said that the Federal Police has been the only one in the country that has been able to increase their perception of trustworthiness and credibility between the population.

The Gendarmerie Division was created in 2014 by president Peña Nieto as part of his security strategy to combat organized crime in Mexico.

It has been widely seen as an effective police force by the general population since these officers are better prepared and better paid than almost all other police forces. In order to be accepted to the force, a candidate needs to have completed a bachelor’s degree.

Here is a promotional video of the Gendarmeria, we placed English subtitles in there for you this time, you’re welcome.

Watch Out For Those Mosquitoes

State health authorities, headed by Guillermo Trejo, warned citizens to be aware of possible breeding places for mosquitoes that can transmit dengue fever, zika and chikingunya.

David Ibarra, head of the vectors control program for Baja, stated that all actions taken are merely preventive, as no cases of any of these diseases have been reported yet in the current year.

He did say that because of the present climate change, temperature and humidity has become ideal for the proliferation of the Aedes Aegypti mosquito, which has already increased its population by 30%, although they haven’t been found to carry the diseases.

“It’s important to remember that tires, flower pots and any containers that contain water, are ideal for the proliferation of the mosquito, since it looks for clean water to deposit its eggs”, said Ibarra.

Ibarra also stated that his office has already installed 6,692 mosquito traps around the state and invited everyone to pitch in by not leaving any open containers with water around the house.

Send this to a friend