WASHINGTON, December 31, 2015 – Back in 2010, inmates held in a northern Mexican prison “were allowed to leave with authorization of the prison director to carry out instructions for revenge attacks using official vehicles and using guards’ weapons for executions,” said a spokesman for Mexico’s attorney general.
One of the three murderous attacks perpetrated by the furloughed convicts left 17 dead, mostly young party-goers.
Upon completing their bloody assignments, the prisoners returned – with their borrowed vehicles and weapons – to the custodial care of their opened-armed, Mexican jailers.
“Less than 2 percent of crimes in Mexico result in prison sentences,” the Manchester Guardian reported, adding that “putting cartel gunmen in prison may not prevent them from continuing to commit crimes.”
And that certainly applies to Mexico’s drug kingpins.
As we saw with the dramatic prison escape of Sinaloa cartel honcho Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman, anything is possible when you have enough cash.
Call it a benefit of “affluenza.”
More recently, gringo Americanos were greeted with the happy news that Mexican authorities captured Ethan Couch and his mother Tonya.
The pair fled Texas for points south of the border after a video surfaced on social media showing what appears to be the young Ethan watching friends enjoy a game of beer pong – a violation of a very generous10-year probation deal that allowed the young Couch to remain free even after killing four neighbors in a drunk-driving accident.
That probation deal was crafted by Judge Jean Hudson Boyd after hearing psychiatrist G. Dick Miller testify that Ethan’s moral compass was dulled not only by ample amounts of alcohol but “affluenza,” a mental condition Dr. Miller defined as reckless, anti-social behavior by some children of wealthy, over-indulgent parents.
It didn’t bother Judge Boyd that affluenza is nowhere mentioned in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. Or that the condition would not pass muster in the courtroom of TV’s no-nonsense Judge Judy.
So it should come as no surprise that Mexico’s corrupt criminal justice system granted Ethan Couch an “amparo,” or legal injunction, preventing his transfer to U.S. custody.
A Mexican judge could rule that the issue of extradition be adjudicated, which could draw out the process for months.
Or the Couch family could follow in the footsteps of escape artist “El Chapo” and simply buy their son’s way out of jail.
That’s how affluenza works down Mexico way.