Tags: ronald james wooden | tortured | mexico | police

Ronald James Wooden, Tortured by Mexico Police, Gets Federal Attention

Image: Ronald James Wooden, Tortured by Mexico Police, Gets Federal Attention
In this June 30, 2016 photo, American craftsman Ronald James Wooden pauses during an interview in Mexico City. Originally from Iowa, he’s says police detained and beat him three years ago for allegedly disturbing the peace, but Wooden says he was beaten because of a dispute with his neighbor, who claimed to belong to a local drug cartel who was demanding protection money. (AP Photo/Marco Ugarte)

By    |   Thursday, 14 Jul 2016 01:26 PM

Ronald James Wooden was allegedly tortured and kidnapped by Taxco municipal police in southern Mexico in 2013 and a Mexican federal judge last month ordered the government to start a criminal investigation.

According to The Associated Press, Wooden moved from Texas to Taxco, in the southern Mexican state of Guerrero, because of its well-known silver jewelry industry. He told the news service that he had set up a workshop with his Mexican-born wife where he forged items as a blacksmith.

Wooden, 46, told The Associated Press that he was arrested for allegedly disturbing the peace after a dispute with a neighbor, who Wooden said was a former police officer who claimed ties to the local drug cartel.

"They beat me for close to four hours," Wooden said, adding that he sustained broken ribs, genital injuries and nerve damage. "Some would get tired and then others would come in. They were going to kill me and disappear me."

There was little action in Wooden's case until the judge's order on June 30 to open a formal investigation for torture and kidnapping.

Wooden and his wife have since left Taxco and moved to another part of the country.

The Associated Press said an investigation done by the state of Guerrero's Human Rights Defense Commission in 2014 found that Taxco police illegally held Wooden, contradicted themselves about how the American sustained his injuries, and lied about their extent.

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Ronald James Wooden was allegedly tortured and kidnapped by Taxco municipal police in southern Mexico in 2013 and a Mexican federal judge last month ordered the government to start a criminal investigation.
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2016-26-14
Thursday, 14 Jul 2016 01:26 PM
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