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Judicial System in Mexico
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Judicial System & Personal Experiences


Jonathan Allinson & Wikipedia

Various Facts

Every 6 years there are presidential elections. A president in Mexico can only serve 1 term. The next presidental calderonelections are in 2012. The current president is Felipe Calderon of the "Pan" party.

Where we live Atizapan de Zaragoza is actually called a Municipio. The people often refer to Atizapan as a city. Atizapan has a Municipal President. This is kind of like a mayor. Municipal presidents can only serve 1 term as well, but their term is only 3 years in comparison to the presidents 6 years.

The government of Mexico is corrupt and you can pay off police officers, judges etc. You are considered guilty until proven innocent.

Personal Experience

A few weeks ago, Saul my assistent was driving the route for a Sunday evening service and got into a fender bender. It was the other drivers fault! A police officer came to the scene. He began to question both Saul and the young woman. She was learning how to drive and did not have a liscence. Her brother who was in the car said that he had his liscence, to which the police officer said it didn't matter. You have an option to settle things right there at the scene. In fact we have been told, that you have to invite the police officer to get involved in the acicdent. If you do not and you and you are not blocking traffic, you discuss with the other driver, call insurance companies etc without the police getting involved. Of course the police put pressure to get involved and to "clean up" the situation as soon as possible.

The brother of the other driver was saying it was Saul's fault, while Saul was saying it was his fault. The police officerpolice told Saul it was her fault. So the police officer escorted them to the police compound and left them. Now, once there other officeres took both drivers liscences, but they allowed the young lady to leave and basically accepted the liscence of her brother and him as the responsible driver. They told everyone to either fix it among themselves or the vehicles would be impounded for 3 days, with each driver responsible to pay for their own vehicle. The Ministerio Publico (Public Ministry) would then look into who had fault.

I arrived on the scene to help Saul, (the van is in my name). I talked to the father of the young lady who was now involved and her brother. My theory was if she didn't have her liscence they have no ground to really blame us for the accident. Their way of looking at the situation is we are at fault because we have the bigger vehicle. I began to be suspicious that we would have more trouble than we wanted if we allowed the police to figure it all out. I went over and asked an officer. Thats when he explained about the 3 days the car would be impounded.He also recommended that I would probably want to get a lawyer as well. The father was asking for a $60 to walk away. I began to think to myself knowing that if you have friends or money you can pay off the judge. Seeing as how they had already gotten the police to accept that the brother as the driver, I knew I would pay a whole lot more money if I drug this out. So I offered to pay $35 to which they accepted. So we go into this little trailer where 2 police officers were holding onto the liscences. They asked us to fill out paperwork saying that we accepted to settle things. The police officer then told us that the next day we could pick up the liscences and pay the "fee" for getting into an accident. This was a surprise to me, but I said to myself that is the way it is. He then sent the brother out of the trailer with the other police officer to "check something with the vehicle." He then said to Saul and I so what are we going to do? Do you want to pay now or pay tomorrow. I then said to him. What are you trying to say, I can pay you personally right now and walk out with the liscence? Yes he responded. I then told him, I couldn't believe that he offered us that, and that we were christians and do things honestly. We were not going to pay him a bribe. We began to walk out and he called us back and handed us the liscence.

Information Taken from Wikipedia

Mexico is a Federal State composed by thirty-two states: thirty-one states and the Federal District (Mexico City), the later being the seat of the Federal Branches. The government system is presidential. Both the power of the Federation and that of the thirty-two states are based on the principle of division of powers among the Executive, Legislative, and Judicial Branches.
The Federal Executive power rests upon the President of the United Mexican States, in each one of the thirty-one states upon the Governor for each entity and in the Chief of Government for the Federal District. All of them are elected every six years and may not be re-elected.
The Federal Legislative Branch is vested upon the Union Congress, which is divided into an Upper and a Lower Chamber. The Legislative Branch of the thirty-two states is single-chambered; those belonging to the thirty-one states are called local congresses and the one for the Federal District is called Legislative Assembly. All legislators are elected for a three-year period, except the members of the Upper Chamber who serve a six-year period.
The Judicial Branch of the federation is vested upon the Supreme Court of Justice of the Nation, made up of eleven ministers elected by the vote of two thirds of the Upper Chamber members, put forward by the President, to serve fifteen-year terms. The Judicial Branch of the thirty-two states is vested upon their respective Supreme Court of Justice.
The Constitution establishes that all the states of the federation must adopt the municipality as the basis for the territorial, political, and administrative division. A municipal Town Hall, elected through public and direct voting, administers each of the 2,441 municipalities into which the country is divided. Each municipal Town Hall is made up of a Municipal President and a varying number of officers and trustees.
The politics of Mexico are dominated by three political parties: National Action Party (PAN), the Party of the Democratic Revolution (PRD) and Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI).




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