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Wednesday, Jan. 8, 2014

Tijuana police graduating from police academy to have city pension and retirement plan

New public safety director had touted plan to U-T San Diego in December interview in which he also talked of having refused a bribe offer and of plans to use drones for surveillance

       Thirty-two Tijuana police cadets graduated from the Baja California police academy on Monday, and Mayor Jorge Astiazarán said they will be the first Tijuana city police to have a city pension and retirement plan. He said details will be forthcoming, and hoped that over time all 2,300 city police will be served by the program and will have a dignified retirement. He asked state public safety chief Daniel de la Rosa for a total of 450 graduates by the time Astiazarán's term ends in 2016, or 150 per year. Story, Frontera (PDF).
     De la Rosa said that from 2002 to date, more than 5,500 have graduated from the academy, which also trains police for Mexicali, Rosarito, Tecate, and Ensenada. Fifteen Mexicali police cadets also graduated Monday.
     New Tijuana public safety director Alejandro Lares Valladares, 35, had spoken of plans for the retirement system with U-T San Diego last month in an article by Sandra Dibble titled "Retirement system for TJ cops?"
     That interview, originally published online Dec. 19, finally made it into the paper's local section print edition on Tuesday (Jan. 8). In it, he said he had rejected a bribe in 2008, concluding at the time, "If I accept that money, I'm going to be a part of all those homicides and all that crime. It's not worth it." In the interview, he spoke about his decision to take 120 police who had been on protective detail away from roles such as guarding prominent Tijuana residents and put them on patrol instead, and of plans to use drones in certain situations to "conduct surveillance that brings us live images, in this manner they could be used to prevent crime."