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Is Pepper Spray Legal in Mexico?

In recent weeks, social networks have been flooded with complaints from women, who have detailed the kidnapping attempts of those who have been victims inside and outside various stations of the Metro Collective Transportation System (STC).

These publications have set off alarms among the authorities and especially among women, who through social networks have begun to share “recipes” on how to make homemade pepper gas, in order to have a means of protection against a possible threat of which they could be a victim.

Is it legal to use pepper spray in Mexico?

Although the use of pepper gas has gained popularity as a weapon of personal defense, this device is prohibited within the Penal Code of the City and the State of Mexico.


If you are going to bring pepper spray on a flight, you cannot have it on you or in your carry-on bag. Pepper spray will have to be left in cargo luggage. Once you arrive in Mexico, your luggage may be searched, but the civilian pepper spray will not cause any alarm. The same rules for flying back to the States with pepper spray apply, so make sure you do not accidentally leave the spray in your pocket.


Pepper spray is completely legal to purchase in Mexico, and it can be found at large businesses and even in pharmacies. There is a saying (and even the tone of the U.S. government advice implies) that anything can be purchased in Mexico for the right price. However, if a good is sold openly at a reputable business (rather than off of a cart or a lean-to-stall), then you can usually assume that it is a legitimate item.


Pepper spray is meant to be used as a defensive weapon. It is a less-than-lethal weapon, but it is a weapon nonetheless. If you intend to use it, make sure the situation is serious enough. If you are threatened in some way, you must also be in a sober state of mind and be able to judge the situation properly for your story to carry weight with the authorities. If you use pepper spray in any other situation, you will have to answer to criminal assault charges.

Sexual harassment in Mexico has led women to be alert and look for new ways to defend themselves, including the use of pepper gas.

However, the attempted defense of a woman from Puebla in the face of a sexual attack caused great controversy because according to the Public Security and Municipal Transit Secretariat of Puebla, she could not carry pepper spray.

“It can be considered a prohibited instrument that only law enforcement authorities are authorized to use and must have a capacity for the use of tear gas or pepper gas,” said Secretary Manuel Alonso.

In Mexico City the situation is not different:

“It is equivalent to moral violence, the use of toys or other objects that have the appearance, shape or configuration of firearms, or guns of ammunition or those thrown through compressed air or gas,” says the Penal Code capital in his article 225.

Experts have commented that there is a legal vacuum in terms of use in the population and even in the security forces.

Pepper gas is a chemical compound that is derived from an oleoresin of capsicum; that is, the oil contained in the peppers or peppers.

They are easy to find in stores or markets, as well as through the internet. its cost varies from 50 to 350 pesos.

Source: mexicanist, legalbeagle, publimetro, verne.elpais

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