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MEXICO: Donovan Tavera, Mexico's only forensic cleaner

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Donovan explains his work to a member of Mexico’s Federal District Police, who is guarding the apartment where journalist Rúben Espinosa and four other women were murdered in July of this year, in the middle-class neighborhood of Narvarte, Mexico City, Mexico on September 25, 2015. Donovan offers to carry out a forensic cleaning of the scene of the crime, but he is told that the investigation is still ongoing. Donovan Tavera, 43, is the director of “Limpieza Forense México”, the country’s first and so far the only government-accredited forensic cleaning company. Since 2000, Tavera, a self-taught forensic technician, and his family have offered services to clean up homicides, unattended death, suicides, the homes of compulsive hoarders and houses destroyed by fire or flooding. Despite rising violence that has left 70,000 people dead and 23,000 disappeared since 2006, Mexico has only one certified forensic cleaner. As a consequence, the biological hazards associated with crime scenes are going unchecked all around the country. Photo by Bénédicte Desrus