From the Fronteras Desk
The United States released data Thursday on Mexican police seizures of guns seized that came from this country.
Between 2007 and 2011, Mexico turned over more than 99,000 guns to the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco Firearms and Explosives for tracing. Of those, 68,000 were originally from the United States, the bureau reported. Originating country of the rest could not be determined.
The ATF noted that criminals used rifles more than any other type of gun, especially the AK47 and AR15 variants.
"A lot of the criminal organizations are looking for specific types of firearms," said Tom Mangan, ATF spokesman in Phoenix. "That report shows the cartels need for high powered rifles."
Mangan said Mexican authorities have not told U.S. officials how many guns were actually seized in that five-year period.
In prior years, both news media reports and ATF officials stated that 90 percent of the guns used in crimes in Mexico came from the United States.
However, ATF and Government Accountability Office officials later backtracked, saying the percentage only reflects the guns the ATF was allowed to examine.