06/16/11 – The Mexican state of Puebla is preparing to enact a variety of judicial reforms within the next few years as part of the federal reforms passed in 2008. However, Puebla’s Superior Court of Justice has requested that the reforms for the penal code, which were scheduled to begin June 18 of this year, be postponed. They will not be implemented until 2013 due to a lack of “economical, human, and technical” resources. The new penal system will be enacted in full throughout the entire state no later than 2016.
Postponing these reforms will allow for a more gradual process that will provide a smoother transition and more time for adjustment. Perhaps the most important reform proposed thus far involves a remodification of the Organic Law of Judicial Power (Ley Orgánica del Poder Judicial). This reform requires that judges be present for oral hearings and that they also be responsible for organizing, executing and modifying punishments given to criminals. La Jornada reported that other reforms to the penal system include the creation of special processing centers aimed at reducing corruption and increasing transparancy. An initiative to modify provisions of the Penal Code for Adolescents (Código de Justicia para Adolescentes) has also been presented with the intention of increasing rates of social readjustment.
According to La Jornada and Cambio, the calendar presented by Governor Rafael Moreno Valle states that the eastern regions of Puebla, including San Juan de los Llanos, Teziutlán, Tlatlauquitepec, and Zacapoaxtla, will be the first areas targeted with reform. It is estimated that approximately 200 million pesos will be invested towards infrastuctre and training of officials in this region alone. The northern region of Puebla, including Alatriste, Huauchinango, Xicotepec de Juárez, Zacatlán, which are next on the list, will be addressed by September 2013. The third region targeted, which consists of southern regions like Matamoros, will be processed by March 2014. The central region of the state will be aiming to enact reforms starting March 2015, and the city of Puebla will be the last area addressed, scheduled for June 2016.