Roughly 50,000 expats from the U.S. and Canada relocated to what was considered to be a peaceful paradise in Mexico. But the community of Lake Chapala says crime has increased ten times in the past five years.
In the past decade, most of Mexico’s worst crime has been restricted to certain areas like the southern part of the country or along its border with the United States. But in recent years, violence – including home invasions, car-jackings and gun battles – has been spreading to neighborhoods long-thought to be peaceful and safe.
Lake Chapala, a retirement haven popular with expats from the U.S. and Canada, is one such community.
As a result of the increased crime, many transplanted foreigners in Lake Chapala have left Mexico. They have either returned home or re-located to other Latin American countries. The governments of the U.S. and Canada have both issued warnings to expats and tourists about Mexico’s violence.
CGTN’s Alasdair Baverstock traveled to Lake Chapala to take a closer look at the escalating tension.