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MEXICO: Acapulco’s glory fades behind new violence

Once a celebrities' hotspot, famed for its beauty, Acapulco these days produces the same depressing news of violence, drug wars and death as much of the rest of Mexico. Can this great destination reclaim its former glory, asks Erik Bergin.

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ACAPULCO, MEXICO — In the early morning hours on Monday, Feb. 4, 2013, according to press reports, five masked and armed men stormed a holiday bungalow in Acapulco, where about a dozen Spanish tourists were sleeping. The perpetrators tied six of the Spanish men with cables found in the house, robbed them of their money and drank their mescal liquor; and then, overdoing their evil deeds, gang raped the six Spanish women that were staying in the bungalow. The traumatic events went on for three hours. One Mexican woman was allegedly spared because of her nationality. Despite the turmoil, no one in nearby bungalows called the police.

One of Acapulco's beaches. Photo:

One of Acapulco’s beaches. Photo:

[pullquote]Walton initially made the mistake of saying that such things happen ‘everywhere in the world'[/pullquote] One week later, the Mexican and Spanish press as well as Acapulco City and the Mexican society as a whole, were still trying to grasp the evilness of the crime and its consequences. As the Time magazine reported, “Mexican officials struggled to limit the fallout on Mexico’s image and tourist industry. Acapulco Mayor Luís Walton initially made the mistake of saying that such things happen ‘everywhere in the world’ and had to apologize for it the next day, weeping on television as he tried to look penitent for trying to minimize the atrocity. Mexico’s Congress approved a special commission to look into the crime as the Senator Mariana Gómez accused the mayor of shedding crocodile tears.”

About a week later, Mexican police brought eight people in for questioning in connection with the crime (read more here). Mexico’s President Enrique Peña Nieto, too, stepped in calling for a federal response to the crime, Time reported.

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The editor of the Traveling Reporter works as a business news editor, and is a frequent traveler. When not doing any of that, he spends time on his boat and tries to figure out where to travel next. Two of his top destinations are the Philippines and San Francisco. Email Erik! Follow the Traveling Reporter at Stumbleupon, Tumblr, Chime In, Pinterest, Google+, Weibo, Storify, Facebook, Traveldudes, Myspace.