|02TEGUCIGALPA3434||2002-12-24 15:33:00||UNCLASSIFIED||Embassy Tegucigalpa|
This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.
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.