Ana Isela Martinez Amaya, a teacher at an El Paso school, spent more than a month in a Juarez jail after Mexican police found drugs in her car at the Mexico-U.S. border crossing. But FBI agents uncovered a complex drug operation that involved tracking Ford cars and copying their keys. Their investigation ultimately led to charges against Martinez being dropped. Jesus Alcazar/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

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At Border, Teacher Becomes Unwitting Drug Smuggler

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Migrants ride on top of a northern bound train toward the U.S.-Mexico border in Oaxaca, southern Mexico, in March. Migrants crossing Mexico to get to the U.S. have increasingly become targets of criminal gangs who kidnap them to obtain ransom money. Eduardo Verdugo/AP hide caption

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Fear, God And Family Pervade Migrants' Journey

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NPR reporter Jason Beaubien walks on railroad tracks while reporting a story about the dangers that face Central American migrants in Tenosique, Tabasco, Mexico. David Rochkind for NPR hide caption

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Undocumented Mexican immigrants walk through the Sonoran Desert after crossing the U.S.-Mexico border. Migrants attempting to cross are at risk of being kidnapped, extorted or even killed by drug gangs. John Moore/Getty Images hide caption

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Brutal Cartels Make Crossing U.S. Border Even Riskier

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Police officers stand next to a hole they say was used as a mass grave near San Fernando in the Mexican state of Tamaulipas in late April. Almost 200 bodies were found that month in Tamaulipas. Prosecutors believe the killings were carried out by members of the Zetas drug cartel. Alexandre Meneghini/AP hide caption

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Drug Cartels Prey On Migrants Crossing Mexico

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Migrants ride on top of a freight train in the Mexican state of Tabasco. They'll hop trains for days, possibly even weeks, before getting to the U.S. border. David Rochkind for NPR hide caption

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Atop A Train, Migrants Begin Dangerous Trek To U.S.

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Mexican soldiers have taken control of the police department in downtown Matamoros, in the border state of Tamaulipas. Jason Beaubien/NPR hide caption

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Mexico Replaces Police With Soldiers In Border Area

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Mexico Captures Reputed Leader Of La Familia Cartel

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Saul Alvarez of Mexico (right) lands a punch before knocking out opponent Carlos Baldomir of Argentina at a fight in 2010. In March, Alvarez became the WBC super welterweight champion and will defend the title Saturday in his hometown of Guadalajara. Mark Ralston/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

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Mexico's Red Hot Boxing Star Ready To Defend Title

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Julian Leyzaola, police chief of Juarez, says bringing crime down and cleaning up the police force should be much easier than it was in Tijuana, where he spent three years as the top cop. Juan Carlos Llorca/AP hide caption

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Juarez Police Chief: Drug Cartels Aren't Invincible

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Report Blasts War On Drugs

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Barrio La Victoria Ciudad Delgado in San Salvador, El Salvador, is controlled by the Mara Salvatrucha gang. A gang leader says he sees the group as a social organization — one that provides services, like water, and protects "civilians." Jason Beaubien/NPR hide caption

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El Salvador Fears Ties Between Cartels, Street Gangs

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Members of the Salvadoran police squad "The Hawks" search suspected gang members in San Salvador. Jason Beaubien/NPR hide caption

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El Salvador Grapples With Upswing In Drug Traffic

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Soldiers walk past part of a message written in blood at the site of a massacre at a ranch in northern Guatemala on May 16. The message is a warning to Otto Salguero — the owner of the ranch, according to local media. Guatemalan authorities blame the killings on the Mexican drug cartel Los Zetas. Moises Castillo/AP hide caption

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Mexican Cartels Spread Violence To Central America

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The Soumaya Museum in Mexico City was designed by Carlos Slim's son-in-law and houses Slim's collection of more than 65,000 pieces. It is dominated by works from European and Mexican artists. Walter Shintani/LatinContent/Getty Images hide caption

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World's Richest Man Opens Flashy Museum In Mexico

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