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Mexico earns a rare victory against crime, thwarts Qaddafi son's plans

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Tim Wimborne/Reuters

(Read caption) Al Saadi Gaddafi, the third son of Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi, reacts to a question at a news conference in Sydney in this 2005 file photo.

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Has Mexico become a major player in unraveling international plots?

The Mexican government today is touting its role in helping thwart an attempt by Saadi Qaddafi, one of the sons of the late Libyan dictator Muammar Qaddafi, to enter the country under a false name and take up residence in a wealthy resort on Mexico’s Pacific coast.

The news comes less than two months after Mexico announced it had helped foil a plot that included an Iranian-American man allegedly reaching out to drug traffickers in Mexico to assassinate the Saudi ambassador to the US.

This is not the Mexico that most of its citizens know. In fact, impunity rates are over 90 percent, and it is precisely the lack of functional institutions and transparent investigations behind Mexicans' worry that its violent fight against organized crime will stubbornly remain on their doorstep, as we detailed in this week’s cover story.

As it remains mired in its drug fight, the government sought a boost from news today of its role in stopping Saadi. “Thwarting the illegal entry of Saadi Qaddafi in our country represents, without a doubt, yet another demonstration of the capacity of the institutions of Mexico to safeguard the integrity of the national territory,” said Mexico Interior Minister Alejandro Poire this morning at a press conference.

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