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Perfiles latinoamericanos

Print version ISSN 0188-7653


RUIZ TORRES, Miquel Á.  and  AZAOLA GARRIDO, Elena. To suit the crime: Institutional corruption and police involvement in kidnapping in Mexico. Perf. latinoam. [online]. 2014, vol.22, n.44, pp.91-112. ISSN 0188-7653.

This work reconstructs the careers of policemen that are carrying out a sentence for kidnapping at the penitentiary of Santa Martha in Mexico City from the perspective of their interrupted itinerary as police officers. The interviews reveal a police culture based on four elements that articulate the meaning of social relationships both within the institution and with citizens: distrust, authoritarianism, discretionality and negotiation. These elements allow us to identify the common and normalized ethos of an institution which abuses power to sustain and perpetuate itself, even though if sometimes this implies sacrificing some of its officers as propitiatory victims for the sake of public opinion.

Keywords : police; corruption; prison; kidnapping; police culture; tales of innocence.

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