On Tuesday morning an armed group of men found circling the Cancun Hotel Zone were captured by the National Guard. The men were spotted driving around in a white van when they called attention to themselves by speeding and driving recklessly near Kukulcan Boulevard. The armed men attempted to escape by speeding up and driving away from the agents but failed in their attempt to get away.
The National Guard agents were quickly able to catch up with the driver of the vehicle and ordered him to stop. They detained the six occupants of the white van, one of which is reported to be a minor, and proceeded to perform a search of the vehicle. Upon inspection, the agents found numerous guns, which led them to contact the Quintana Roo Police in order to secure the transfer of the men occupying the van.
The men, who were captured near the Chac Mool beach area, were then transferred over to the police. The police later turned them over to the State Prosecutor’s office and then to the Attorney General’s office to begin the legal process. They were charged with carrying firearms but there is no word on what kind of penalty they might be facing or if they were involved with a larger organized crime group.
This incident comes at a time when there has been an uptick in the number of crimes being committed in the Cancun and Riviera Maya areas. The increase in crime has even led the U.S. State Department to issue a warning to United States citizens regarding travel safety in Mexico’s popular tourist destinations. Still, the area continues to see record numbers of tourists coming from both the U.S. and Canada to vacation on the Mexican Caribbean’s spectacular beaches.
Authorities have responded to the need for additional security with the high number of tourists coming into town. They have developed a Safe Beach program that aims to deter criminal activity, along with the Red Circle Operation, which consists of continuous patrolling of the area. The Hotel Zone, which includes the hotels, bars, nightclubs, restaurants, and shopping centers in the Cancun tourist district, is a big part of the focus of these operations.
There has been an increased presence of both the Mexican military and the police in Cancun’s well-known Hotel Zone, in an effort to keep tourists safe throughout the busy season. Recently there were checkpoints implemented at the entrances to the tourist zone, with the National Guard and the Army standing guard to prevent suspicious vehicles from entering the area. Additionally, police have been put in place to continuously circle the Hotel Zone area in order to keep an eye out for suspicious activity.
Visitors to Cancun and the Riviera Maya in recent months have most likely noticed the increased presence of uniformed officers and military agents. Not only can they be found in the area of the Hotel Zone but they can even be seen on the beach patrolling as well. Despite this and warnings about crime and Covid, even though Cancun has very few Covid cases, visitors from overseas are nearly filling the hotels every day. And it doesn’t look like it’s going to change anytime soon.
Fortunately, as this story shows, the presence of the military and the police do work to, if not deter, at least stop crime in the area. The men were captured before they could do any damage to tourists or locals and they will be charged for their crimes. These uniformed men are working to make Cancun a safer place, for tourists and locals alike, every day.
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