martes, 14 de mayo de 2013

Colombia catches gang suspects, Police count fewer Bogotá murders

The army caught nine suspected members of criminal gangs in operations in northern Colombia, including six suspected members of one of the main trafficking and killing outfits, the UrabeñosCaracol radio and the EFE agency reported on 13 May. The six suspected Urabeños were caught with firearms and hand grenades in a rural part of the district of Caucasia in the Antioquia department and were to be charged with illegal arms possession and trafficking. Two were identified by their pseudonyms El Fiscal and Finura and described as former paramilitaries. Troops separately caught in the district of Zaragoza three suspected members of another gang Héroes del Nordeste (North-east Heroes), including their purported chief in that district, EFE reported. In the capital Bogotá, police launched an operation on 8 May against mobile phone theft and street crime in which they detained six suspects including a purported head of a thieving gang active in one of the city's main avenues, the website of the Bogotá Government Secretary reported on 10 May. The detainee, a man dubbed Caricortado (Scarface), was described as a veteran thief of mobile phones and previously detained four times but later released for being underage. The city's Government Secretary who coordinates security policies, Guillermo Alfonso Jaramillo Martínez, said police were focusing on mobile thefts as killings had declined in Bogotá but persistent mobile thefts "generate a sense of insecurity among people." Police also confiscated 1,000 knives or sharp instruments and detained five suspected street dealers, the Government Secretary reported. The Bogotá police chief said police counted 380 homicides "so far this year," 76 cases less than the 456 homicides counted for the same period in 2012, Caracol radio reported on 13 May. General Luis Martínez Guzmán cited the neighbourhoods with most killings as Ciudad Bolívar and Usme in southern Bogotá and Bosa in the west.

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