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Old 04-04-2012, 19:29   #106
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Re: Boat Impounded in Mexico

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Originally Posted by jeremiason View Post
What is significant is te ZARPE requirement is only being enforced on the Carribean side of Mexico.... On the Pacific side, you don't need one traveling from California into Mexico.
Enforced is the word....

I don't gamble, not in Vegas, and not when sailing to our next destination.

Get that frickin' exit clearance from the US.. no matter what side
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Old 02-05-2012, 11:36   #107
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Re: Boat Impounded in Mexico

I had a horrifying experience in Isla Mujeres and I will never go back again, even to save my life. I was thrown in prison on bullshit charges and charges were dropped after the 6 day period. You are guilty until proven innocent but if you can prove your innocence in 6 days you are free to go.. MINUS $5,000 in cost attorney etc etc
1. Mexican Navy, complete criminals, rammed my boat by accident and never paid to fix. Horrible attitude and they hate Americans for sure.
2. Isla Mujeres Port Captain, Nice guy but no balls. He could have alleviated many problems for us but did not. Of course he apologized for his country. So What.
3. Adwana, Customs, More criminal than the Mexican Navy.
4. Immigration fair but no authority when it comes to the others.
5. Conclusion and advice stay as far away from Mexico as possible as they blame the USA for all their problems and any chance they get to fine or harass the Gringos from the government side they will. They have no conscience, NONE
6. Mexican people, wonderful over all
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Old 02-05-2012, 12:26   #108
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Re: Boat Impounded in Mexico

I flown in and out of Mexico many times, brought vessels with cargo and cleared into ports, and operated in and out of Del Carmen for a year and never experienced any problems with the officials or locals for that matter. Don't forget the people who live there have to live with the others, long after you have gone on your merry way, so don't expect them to stick their necks out for you.
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Old 02-05-2012, 12:28   #109
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Re: Boat Impounded in Mexico

Easy there PanamaJames. You may be interested to know that the US Customs and Immigration, and Homeland Security are not known for their good manners either. At least not by us "Foreigners". It could be said they are zenophobic to the extreme at times. They can be very rude, and are also known to enforce laws arbitrarily .

You may also benefit from knowing that a foreign boat must check into and out of each port in the USA. They want to know where we are; No Zarpe, but we are supposed to phone each and every time we lift or drop the hook. They give you a clearance number (sometimes just their name and badge number) and you're off.

Most cruisers don't call, or even know the rules, and most don't have a problem. But if they get caught, it's a minimum $5000 fine for not checking into or out of a port.

Now, being a Foreigner, I call in every time. I have to tell you. 60% of the folks answering the phone have no idea what the hell I'm talking about. It happens so often I had to check my facts with Homeland Security and Customs (2 separate phone calls.) Yes, my facts are right on the money. You must call in or risk fines and forfeiture of the vessel.

Now, relax. You're visiting a foreign land and you have to dance to their tune. I don't like it any more than you do, but staying "home" isn't an option.

Cheers.
Paul.
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Old 02-05-2012, 13:18   #110
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Re: Boat Impounded in Mexico

today...@PanamaJames.....and you don't think that same thing happens here....it sure does and more....you are just as guilty here before proven innocent as well....sorry, but at least your out sailing, things and had the resources to handle the problem. Things could be a heck of a lot worse..sorry
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Old 02-05-2012, 14:11   #111
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Re: Boat Impounded in Mexico

I had my experience in Key West sailing in a couple of months ago from Cuba. Wow what an experience. I have a to sail in a month or so out of the country, so I am not going to bad mouthing anyone in Customs and Immigration here. I will at all costs avoid Mexico. I have been there 20 times and never had an experience like the one I did in Isla Mujeres.
Fernando at the American Consulate in Cancun helped me tremendously and the Port Captain told me he could have really given me a bad time about not having a Captain's license if he wanted to but I think he really wanted to help us leave the country without more pain. Anyway a lesson learned for everyone. I flew my airplane from Oregon to Isla Mujeres and backi in 1979 and things have really changed. I guess I will just savior the good old days in Mexico when the drug war was quiet and Aviation gas was 35 cents per gallon from Pemex. What a world we live in now. As Frank sang "Thanks for the memories".

But last I want to say I feel bad for the people who lost their boat. I have a great honest and professional attorney I can recommend to them that got me out of prison in 6 days. They are the best in Cancun and reasonable priced. They can contact me and I will call them if anyone can put me in touch with them. Of the 35 attorney's on the list the consulate gave me, few I believe can help these people get their boat back like the firm I used. Tell them to call me or write me.
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Old 02-05-2012, 14:41   #112
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Re: Boat Impounded in Mexico

I was in the bahamas on a mega yacht. We declared the guns we had onboard as per directions from customs and immigration. While immigration was doing a routine check of the vessel 1 week later with our captain back in the states, they asked to see the guns that were listed on the forum. The captain did not know that the owner had 2 pistols on board. We showed them to the immigration officials thinking that they had been declared. They were not and immigration just said to declare them over the phone. We did. 1 hour later 3 police officers showed up and told all the crew to come with them and bring the pistols with us.

We went from one person to another explaining that it was just a mistake and we did not try to hide them. Even brought in the officials who came to the boat and they even said that we did not try to hide anything. Just a mistake on our part. They took the guns and chained the boat tot he dock leaving 2 officers onboard. Told us we could either get a hotel room or go to jail. We got hotel rooms, as we were leaving the boat the 2 officers wanted to know why the satilite tv did not work and how come the liquor cabinet was locked. Long story short owner paid 5000 dollar fine, lost the 2 pistols and never went back to the bahamas.

In a years time he would spend upward of 100,000 in the Bahamas,,, he told the immigration officials this and showed them the receipts and mentioned that he would never be back. Official did not care. Guns most likely went into a private collection. Some official got a little extra money that day but the Bahamas lost lots of income.
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Old 02-05-2012, 14:49   #113
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Re: Boat Impounded in Mexico

Panamajames, what did you do to invoke the wrath of the Mexican authorities?

You have only given us a small part of the picture.

Also under Mexican Law they have only 72 hours to give you the "alta forma de prison". If they don't they must let you go. Once you have the alta the only way to get out is to post bail and the wait around for the hearings, there is no trial system like in the USA. You got out in 6 days without bail means you had no alta therefore they were holding you illegally, but that happens if you have pissed them off.

They do not through people in jail for free. And yes in Mexico it is Roman law you are guilty until you prove your innocence. Before you arrive in a county find out about the rules and abide by them.

I have lived in Mexico 23 years and know what it is about.

As a non USA citizen I am buying a boat in the USA and have spent hundreds of hours investigating the rules in your county and believe me once I have sailed out I will never sail back. Your countries rules and regs are the toughest and most draconian in the world as far as I can ascertain.

You get no sympathy from me for the ordeal you suffered, it is just part of travelling.
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Old 02-05-2012, 15:15   #114
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Re: Boat Impounded in Mexico

In short I entered the country and declared my 45 Glock auto and ammo with permit from Panama and receipt from the USA. After 8 hours of "who is going to keep the gun" nonsense the Navy or Customs or Port Captain, my wife and I and her brother were taken to Cancun and I was charged with "introduction of a illegal weapon" 2 felonies and non-bailable. After accidently bumping into the correct attorney in the prison front office. I had talked to others. I filed with the court that I had no history, declared the weapon and was an innocent guy on vacation. The judge said Adwana (customs) had made a mistake in charging me and I was released and then 5 days later my boat was released after improper care with the Mexican Navy, a little more worn and a hole in the side of the fiberglass. I left without a fine and without my gun. Also the court apologized to me profusely. WHY jajaja. In 6 days the lost my passport, boat registration, gun permit and Panama residency ID, their explanation. "Someone must have placed it in the wrong file" I received none of my paperwork or gun or ammo. They kept the gun because the charges were going to appealed by the prosecutor.
All I can say is that the Drug War or anything else will not be won by those incompetant idiots.. And I mean morons, excuse my French. That is the rest of the story.
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Old 02-05-2012, 15:20   #115
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Re: Boat Impounded in Mexico

According to this you were lucky and they were within their rights.

Rules & Regulations on bringing firearms and guns to Mexico - MEXonline.com
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Old 02-05-2012, 15:21   #116
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Re: Boat Impounded in Mexico

My boat is Panama registered and I agree with you regarding American laws. Ouch

I did not research the law well enough. I was told to declare my gun but did not know 45 was reserved for the military and drug lords. My fault no one else, learned a good lesson but will never travel to Mexico again. Beautiful wonderful country though and I am sorry for all the problems they have. Bottom line I can only blame myself.
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Old 02-05-2012, 15:21   #117
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Re: Boat Impounded in Mexico

As I remember, he brought a 38 pistol in, declared it, and was whisked away. No guns, no ammo is the rule here for some years now and Mexican officialdom takes it very seriously. I know, major arms shipments flow into Mexico all the time, and as recently revealed, some of them aided by ATF agents from the US. Corruption thrives on both sides of the border with so much cash flowing through the drug trade. It would be so simple to shut all that gangster crap down by legalizing drugs and making it a medical issue rather than a paramilitary feed trough.
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Old 02-05-2012, 15:25   #118
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Re: Boat Impounded in Mexico

mea culpa, a glock 45 is a much nicer piece than a 38.
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Old 02-05-2012, 15:27   #119
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Re: Boat Impounded in Mexico

Yeah and it only take one bullet which is the nice thing. Now I carry Grizzly Bear Spray. Spray em and harpoon em. I hate pirates.
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Old 02-05-2012, 15:28   #120
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Re: Boat Impounded in Mexico

I wouldn't mind living on the boat in La Paz. I love the ocean and the desert. How is the new Marina there. Is it affordable for a tired guy.
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