International extraditions, especially extraditions from Mexico, are an important topic that appears in the news frequently. The disturbing news that after committing a heinous crime in this country the criminal has escaped into Mexico to avoid prosecution is indeed a serious problem. Yet, few prosecutors and law enforcement personnel are familiar with what is required for extraditing a fugitive from Mexico.  Moreover, few people have even heard of an Article 4 prosecution which in certain circumstances is an alternative to the extradition process. District Attorneys and law enforcement refer these cases to the Border Violence Division for the expertise needed in these complex and specialized cases to ensure that criminals do not evade justice by fleeing across the border into Mexico.

In 2003, the New Mexico Attorney General’s Office requested the first extraditions from Mexico for criminals who committed state crimes and fled to Mexico to avoid prosecution. In a historical development, Mexico granted the NMAGO’s requests and extradited homicide suspects BACK TO New Mexico to face trial.

Extraditions from Mexico are now utilized as an important law enforcement tool to bring fugitives to justice. 


Article 4 the Mexican Federal Penal Code allows for the prosecution of Mexican Nationals in Mexico that have fled there to try and avoid prosecution for crimes committed in New Mexico. Since the early 1990’s the New Mexico and Mexico Attorney General’s offices have collaborated in prosecution some of New Mexico’s most heinous criminal cases according to Article 4. Thanks to the efforts of both agencies numerous Mexican Nationals are serving long prison sentences in Mexico for crimes committed in New Mexico. The Border Violence Division has created a technical assistance manual for prosecutors and law enforcement agencies entitled, “Criminal Prosecution Under Article 4 of the Mexican Federal Penal Code. The Border Violence Division has created a technical assistance manual for law enforcement and prosecutors, entitled “Criminal Prosecutions under Article 4 of the Mexican Federal Penal Code.”