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On Tuesday, July 13, two bank robberies occurred simultaneously in Tijuana.

In the first incident, at around 1 p.m., three men (two in their teens) robbed a Bancomer branch on Bulevar Díaz Ordaz in the La Mesa district (opposite Plaza Carrousel). The three bandidos were captured after a short shoot-out with police; all three were wounded and hospitalized.

The second robbery occurred at about the same time at a Bancomer located on Bulevar Insurgentes and Calle Cartagena, but in that instance the robabancos managed to escape.

According to the Asociación de Bancos de México, out of 132 bank robberies committed in Baja during 2009, 104 took place in Tijuana. Martha Almanza Topete, subprosecutor of the Zona Tijuana, said that 41 persons were arrested for bank robberies, and an additional 6 were busted for stealing automatic teller machines. Thirty-eight of those arrested were brought to trial and received sentences of no greater than five years.

Almanza Topete said that not only had bank robberies increased since 2008, but robberies of businesses and homes had gone up 40 percent in a year.

Outside Baja, meanwhile, Sinaloa came in second, with 119 robberies; Mexico City, with a population of 20 million, reported 64 bank robberies. Cash totaling 48.8 million pesos (about $4.5 million) was stolen from banks in 2009.

Sources: El Mexicano, Frontera

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