August 17, 2007

Who says we aren't in the wild west? Yee-hah!

Photo and complete article: La Prensa, Honduras

In Baracoa, Cortés, Honduras, two cattle rustlers were found dead from gunshot wounds in the bed of a pickup which had been used for stealing cattle. One neighbor said that the shooting went on for 25 minutes.

Vigilante neighbors chased after another truck. The driver of the other truck with six more abigeos (cattle thieves) lost control on a bridge and the truck was left dangling off the edge (photo above). Four of the men were supposedly killed and thrown into the river, while two fled injured.

During the shootout, three of the stolen cows were killed by gunfire. Neighbors decided to make the most of the situation and quickly butchered and shared the meat among themselves (and this is different from stealing cattle how?). The other four animals were returned to their owner.

Neighbors asked authorities to patrol the area or they will continue to take justice into their own hands.
Today's La Prensa indicated that the investigation was in process. The other bodies have not been found and as far as the vigilantes go, the witnesses are not talking.

Well, it is true that there is no security in Honduras, even in the towns, much less out in cowboy country. Justice is very hard to come by even when criminals are caught. I would be surprised if you couldn't buy a judge for a side of beef. But these six rustlers learned their lesson the hard way and maybe that will be a warning to others.

Sometimes I say that being in Honduras is like going back to 1950. Some days it is like going back to 1850.

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