Known as “El Ponchis,” or “The Cloak,” an American citizen in Mexico was found guilty of “torturing and beheading at least four people and kidnapping three others” after six days of witness testimony. For these horrendous crimes, the convict was sentenced to a mere three years in a correctional facility and ordered to pay a fine of approximately USD $400,000, equivalent to 4.5 million pesos. Though it seems to be an unimaginably lenient consequence given the nature of his actions, the sentence is actually the maximum penalty allowed under Mexican law for minors. The defendant is barely a teenager at 14 years old, and is suspected to be a hit man for drug cartels. The teenager spoke openly about his actions to reporters, admitting both how many individuals he has killed as well as how he murdered them. This case represents the extent of drug cartel power in Mexico as well as violence’s ability to transcend typical or predictable arenas of society.
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