US embassy cable - 02TEGUCIGALPA3434

CRIME IN HONDURAS VICTIMIZES POLICE AS WELL AS CIVILIANS; POSSIBLE INVOLVEMENT OF CORRUPT POLICE

Identifier: 02TEGUCIGALPA3434
Wikileaks: View 02TEGUCIGALPA3434 at Wikileaks.org
Origin: Embassy Tegucigalpa
Created: 2002-12-24 15:33:00
Classification: UNCLASSIFIED
Tags: PGOV ASEC PHUM KJUS KCRM SNAR PINR HO
Redacted: This cable was not redacted by Wikileaks.
This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.

UNCLAS TEGUCIGALPA 003434 
 
SIPDIS 
 
DEPT. FOR WHA/CEN, INL/LP, AND DRL/PHD 
 
E.O. 12958: N/A 
TAGS: PGOV, ASEC, PHUM, KJUS, KCRM, SNAR, PINR, HO 
SUBJECT: CRIME IN HONDURAS VICTIMIZES POLICE AS WELL AS 
CIVILIANS; POSSIBLE INVOLVEMENT OF CORRUPT POLICE 
 
1. Napoleon Nazar Herrera, head of the Honduran General 
Administration for Criminal Investigation (DGIC - 
investigative police under the Public Ministry), recently 
told reporters that gang members have killed at least 10 
police officers this year.  An increasingly typical killing 
occurred November 17 when a police investigator was killed 
near his home in Comayaguela.  According to police 
informants, members of the gang "mara Salvatrucha" had 
staked out the investigator.  A search led to the capture of 
five gang members in possession of a list containing the 
names of approximately 20 police officers that they had 
allegedly planned on killing in the next few days. 
 
2. In addition to the list, the gang members also had 
bulletproof vests, grenades, and information to which only 
personnel of the DGIC would have had access.  Nazar alleged 
that organized crime and corrupt members of the DGIC have 
been responsible for these murders.  Some DGIC personnel 
allegedly involved may have already been identified by the 
police.  Nazar's main concern was the fact that confidential 
information fell into the hands of gang members. 
 
3.  On December 16, yet another DGIC officer was killed by 
gang members who allegedly were lying in wait for him as he 
was returning home from the city of Danli.  They assaulted 
him on a public bus and killed him when he reached for his 
weapon.  While there is no apparent connection between any 
of these killings, the involvement of gang members in police 
murders underscores the real battle underway on Honduran 
streets as the police continue to implement President 
Maduro's "Safe Honduras" program. 
 
4. In another interesting police development, one newly 
assigned DGIC officer was discovered to have been 
participating in "home invasions" (break-ins) while in 
training and was caught by accident when an invasion victim 
was at the DGIC HQ and saw the criminal - thinking he was 
under arrest - and to his surprise he was told the man was a 
DGIC police officer.  This incident also highlights the 
involvement of Honduran police officials in criminal 
activity that undermines their fellow officer's efforts and 
the stated public security goals of the Maduro government. 
 
PALMER 

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