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20 December 2013

Combating new trends in Latin American organized crime focus of INTERPOL project

BOGOTA, Colombia – A new project to more effectively tackle the growing and evolving crime issues linked to Latin American Organized Crime (LAOC) has been launched by INTERPOL.

Proposed by Colombia, the initiative aims to address the new trends in LAOC through more focused intelligence sharing in order to identify potential links between the various organized crime networks and groups throughout Latin America, the Caribbean and beyond.

Whilst organized crime in Latin America has traditionally been regional in nature and linked to crimes including drug trafficking, kidnapping, arms smuggling, human trafficking and general violence, evidence is emerging of their increased activity further afield and taking advantage of modern technology.

Representatives from 16 countries attended the first working group meeting hosted by Colombia where officials from intelligence and operational units provided an overview of the organized crime activity in their country.

“This operational initiative for Latin America represents a valuable opportunity for developing and enhancing the strength and capacity of each specialized agency of the partner countries,” said Colonel Juliette Kure Parra,  Head of INTERPOL’s National Central Bureau in Bogota.

“With INTERPOL’s backing, the project will provide concrete support towards more successful results in the fight against transnational organized crime in the region,” she added.

INTERPOL Regional Bureaus in the Americas  also attended the meeting, as well as a delegation of the CLACIP-Latin America and Caribe Community of Police Intelligence.

“Through increased information exchange and the development of joint operational activities, this initiative is aimed at supporting the already strong action being taken against organized crime by law enforcement agencies in the region,” said Gianni Baldi, Head of INTERPOL’s Drugs and Criminal Organizations unit.

Participating countries in the three-day (11 – 13 December) meeting are Bolivia, Colombia, Chile, Costa Rica, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Uruguay, the USA and Venezuela.