Thursday, July 23, 2015

I Spy with my Little Eye

You should change moderator minx to moderator thief who deleted people for calling you out on post thefts, BITCH!

Friday, July 3, 2015

Mausoleums of Mexico's Drug Lords

Mexico's most feared drug lords rest in peace in custom-built mausoleums. All famous for lives of ruthlessness and corruption and their violent ends. Just one remains alive, being held in a U.S federal prison. Gaudy and provocative even in death, the 'narcos' of Culiacan have built their own tombs, equipped with 24-hour air conditioning, wi-fi, bedrooms, kitchens, home cinemas and other comforts for their families who come to visit their remains. Mexico's largest and most powerful mafia, the Sinaloa Cartel, is based in the state capital Culiacan, and the town's cemeteries tell the stories of the drug lords' immense wealth.

One of the most powerful drug lords of his era, Amado Carrillo amassed a fortune of over $25 billion, and built palaces throughout Mexico's northern state of Chihuahua, the most extravagant of which is known as the 'Palace of the Thousand and One Nights'. He was famously brutal and murdered every prison guard who ever treated him badly. He died in 1997 on the operating table while undergoing facial plastic surgery to alter his appearance. Built on one of his many provate eastates in Northern Mexico, Carrillo's mausoleum was built at a cost of $490,000, it has a separate room for his family, and a 50-person capacity chapel.

The founder of breakaway cartel the Beltran Leyva Cartel, 'the Boss of the Bosses' spent $650,000 on the mausoleum. The cartel boss' castle-themed mausoleum features an alarm system, satellite television, two bedrooms and a fully-equipped kitchen. The founder of the Beltran Leyva Cartel, which today controls much of southwest Mexico, was killed in a fight with the Mexican Army when commanders sent 200 troops, two tanks and two helicopters to take down Arturo and his three henchmen.

The brother of El Chapo, Arturo Guzman Loera was murdered inside prison while in conference with his lawyer. The Guzman family's mausoleums complex were constructed by his narco boss brother, Joaquin 'El Chapo' Guzman at a cost of $1,200,000. It features five separate buildings, one for each of the Guzman brothers of which he was the eldest and the only one still alive. The buildings all have air-conditioning, 24-hour surveillance, as well as en-suite bedrooms upstairs for visiting family members.
Ines Calderon(The Engineer) was famous for his creative smuggling methods and was one of the first narco traffickers to introduce cocaine and heroin to the U.S. market in the 70s and 80s. The Engineers Roman-themed mausoleum cost a princely $550,000 to construct and has its floral decorations replaced every five days. Above the cavernous burial chamber, the upstairs with its domed ceiling still hosts top-level cartel meetings behind its tinted glass windows.

The tomb of the wife of 'El Guero' - who the drug lord himself had murdered when she left him for another man. El Guero: Hector Luis Palma Salazar aka El Guero was famed for his ruthlessness and control of the authorities. He is currently housed in a U.S. federal prison.The mausoleum featured a spiral staircase leading to an air-conditioned bridal suite with a 360° view of the surrounding hills. It has wi-fi throughout, as well as a large dining hall and kitchen attached. Rumour has it that El Guero keeps the building smelling of his murdered wife's favorite perfume.

The King of Crystal: Ignacio Coronel controlled the U.S. crystal meth market. He was famous for revenge overkill, and once sent 100 cartel hit-men to dispose of three rivals. Ignacio Coronel's modern mausoleum has an integrated music system throughout which senses where visitors are located and changes volumes accordingly. It also boasts wi-fi and a state-of-the-art alarm system which beams video of intruders directly to the smartphones of other Sinaloa Cartel bosses.

Famous for his unpredictable mood swings and extreme violence, Manuel Torres Felix built this mausoleum for himself, complete with Greek marble columns and a fully-equipped kitchen. Known as The Crazy One, Manuel Torres Felix was a Sinaloa Cartel capo who would regularly go for three days without sleep. Known for his emotional instability and tendency to fly off the handle at the slightest provocation, he went on a killing spree in 2009 following the kidnap and murder of his son. The remains of his son's killers were found brutalized in the boots of their cars two weeks after their disappearance, a calling card for which he became famous.

Thursday, July 2, 2015

Preserved Saints

'Incorruptible' bodies of saints whose remains are displayed around Italy for the faithful to worship.While some are mere fragmented bones, other corpses appear staggeringly well-preserved despite dying hundreds of years ago. The saints supposedly belong to the world of the incorrupt - a Roman Catholic belief that Divine Intervention allows some humans to avoid decomposition after death as a sign of their holiness. Incorruptible bodies are often said to have the odour of sanctity, exuding a sweet or floral, pleasant aroma. 

To qualify as incorruptible, traditional belief dictates that the body should not have been embalmed or mummified to achieve preservation but should remain in tact naturally. Despite this, many of the saints have been preserved through other trickery since being taken from their original resting places - and many are encased in wax, silver or bathed in carbolic acid. It was once thought incorruptibility was permanent but many of the saints belonging to the so-called group have become little more than skeletons over the years.The Church no longer counts incorruptibility as a miracle but sees it more like a favourable, if fading, sign from God.

All photos credit: Elizabeth Harper