viernes, 7 de junio de 2013

Police detain traffickers in Ecuador, linked to Mexican cartel

Ecuador's Interior Minister reported on 7 June that police detained at an unspecified date seven presumed members of a trafficking gang thought to be working with Mexico's Sinaloa cartel, one of the main drug trafficking gangs in the Americas. José Serrano Salgado told a television interview that the gang, now "dismantled," was headed by a former army captain tried once in 2009 on drug trafficking charges; he said the gang was thought to have shipped "the largest quantities" of illegal drugs for its Mexican partners, Agence France-Presse reported. The gang was found with 300 kilograms of cocaine. The agency reported that Ecuador had so far confiscated 19 tonnes of illegal drugs in 2013, and confiscated 42 tonnes in 2012, 26 in 2011, 18 in 2010 and 68 in 2009. The Minister separately told the press on 6 or 7 June that 203 policemen had been dismissed from their positions after being accused of offences that included efforts to prevent the judiciary from prosecuting them, the website Hoy reported on 7 June. Serrano cited some of the charges levelled at the former policemen; 11 he said had been dismissed for "illegal arms possession," two for attempted homicide, 10 for forging documents, 11 for hiding evidence in trials and 26 for extortion, "among other" offences. None he said were found to have been involved in an failed police revolt against President Rafael Correa on 30 September 2010.

Police detain 21 gang members in El Salvador, sought for a dozen deaths

El Salvador's Police detained on 6 June 21 presumed members of the gang MS-13 or Mara Salvatrucha, sought in relation with the killings of at least 12 individuals in incidents around the country, the Salvadorean daily El Mundo reported. The head of the anti-gangs police (Unidad specializada antipandillas) Óscar Torres was cited as saying that the detained buried their victims in a mountainous zone in the Pacific-coast department of La Libertad, which the police were excavating. Police separately arrested seven in the northern department of Morazán, suspected of taking part in the killing of two men or boys in that department in 2012, El Mundo reported on 7 June. The daily cited the police as counting "at least" 24 homicides across the country in the first six days of June; a comparative figure for 2012 was not given.

Four shot in bar in central Colombia, gang suspects, suspect detectives held

A gunman shot and killed four men in a bar in Villavicencio in the department of Meta south of Bogotá on 6 June, in what appeared not to be a random act, Radio Santa Fe reported on 7 June. Witnesses were cited as saying that an unidentified man entered and shot at a group talking in the bar, killing one and injuring six more, three of whom later died in hospital. A man was arrested on 7 June in relation with the incident. Separately, authorities detained on 6 or 7 June several policemen and detectives of the state prosecution service (Fiscalía) suspected of collaborating with one of the country's criminal gangs in the western department of Chocó, Caracol radio reported on 7 June. "More than 10" were reported detained in four districts including Medellín, and included three Police criminal investigators, two soldiers or military policemen and a criminal investigator of the CTI attached to the state prosecution service, all suspected of having connections with the gang Renacer. Some were previously imprisoned for having ties to other criminal gangs, Caracol radio reported, though it was not immediately clear if the detained were working or former agents. Policemen in Bogotá detained two other policemen on 6 June or just before, apparently catching them as they sought to rob a woman at knifepoint, Caracol radio reported on 6 June. The broadcaster described the detained as patrolmen dressed in civilian clothes, one working as a security agent at an unspecified Central American embassy; they were to rob the woman of two mobile phones and cash worth about 800 euros or a little over USD 1,000. The incident occurred at an unspecified time of the day, in the middle-class district of Teusaquillo. In the western city of Cali, police detained at an unspecified date 11 suspected members of a gang thought employed as gunmen and extortionists by the Urabeños, one of Colombia's main criminal outfits, Caracol radio reported on 6 June. The suspected members of the gang Los de la Pradera were held in several neighbourhoods of Cali; arms and cash were among items confiscated.