Mexican Navy officers have detained a drug dealer in Playa del Carmen as officials step up safety measures ahead of the busy winter season. The arrest was made this week after more than 50 troops from the Mexican Navy were deployed to the famous seaside resort town.
High-level officials recently announced that more than 200 troops are being deployed across tourist hotspots in the Mexican Caribbean, including Cancun, Tulum, and Playa del Carmen, where 50 soldiers have already begun patrols. This week, authorities announced that a drug dealer had been arrested in Playa del Carmen, an indication that the fresh troop deployments are proving effective.
Playa del Carmen Receives Troops
According to the Secretary for Public Security, Rubén Oyarvide Pedrero, more than 50 troops from the Mexica Navy were recently deployed to the municipality of Solidaridad, where Playa del Carmen is located. The goal, officials say, is to deter criminals and organized crime elements from affecting travelers and residents. Highly-skilled soldiers are also crucial for collecting intelligence and other evidence used by authorities.
“This is an effort to maintain peace and security in our state together with the Armed Forces and other institutions,” the official said in a statement. The Mexican Caribbean state of Quintana Roo relies on a complex network of security providers, from local police to specialized units from the country’s Army, who assist in intelligence efforts and special operations.
This week, those same troops successfully arrested a drug dealer, later identified as Daniel Higinio ‘N’, effectively stopping the man from causing some serious harm to users. The suspect was found carrying 23 doses of cocaine and one dose of marihuana, presumably destined for street sale. The man will now face heavy charges and an even longer time behind bars.
Security officials have said the new troops from the Mexican Navy will largely assist with intelligence efforts and investigative work. However, the troops will also patrol busy streets and help carry out special missions to detain and arrest drug dealers and other criminals, as well as confiscate illegal substances from them.
The government has prioritized public safety this year by sending more troops to crime-prone areas and improving inter-institutional coordination. Two weeks ago, high-level officials from the Mexican Government announced the deployment of more troops to guard nationally valuable historical sights, including Chichen Itzá, in Yucatan. And over the summer, over 4000 troops and law enforcement units formed a visible deterrence against criminals and helped protect travelers.
Authorities are keen on beefing up security as millions of travelers are expected to visit the Mexican Caribbean over the following months. The high season, which starts in December, is one of the busiest times for the region as temperatures fall below 0 in North America, prompting travelers to head down south. A record 26 million visitors are projected to visit the area by the end of the year, and officials want to ensure smooth sailing in one of the world’s most visited destinations.
Safety has been a hot topic this year in much of the Mexican Caribbean, with growing concern over rising crime rates and kidnappings. Although the area is safe for travelers, violent crime, including armed robberies, occasionally makes the headlines, leaving some tourists to question whether their holiday is safe.
Despite alarming headlines, authorities have reassured visitors that the Mexican Caribbean is a safe destination. In addition to deploying more troops, the government has created a new digital portal called Guest Assist for travelers to report crimes online anonymously. Tourists are also advised to follow essential safety tips, such as avoiding dimly lit places outdoors at night.
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