Tuesday, 7 December 2010

Networked Intelligence | 7 December 2010

Region - ALBA to create defense school

On 28 November 2010, the Bolivian government announced that the Bolivarian Alliance of the Americas (ALBA) member nations will create a defense school in Santa Cruz, Bolivia, to train both members of the military and civilians. ALBA country members, including Venezuela, Bolivia, Cuba, Ecuador and Nicaragua, will determine the military doctrine and academic agenda for the school.

Mexico - Ranking falls in Corruption Index

Transparency International's 2010 Corruption Perception Index ranked Mexico 98th out of 178 nations, its lowest rating in the CPI's ten years of publication. In response to the report, Democratic Revolutionary Party (PRD) politician Alejandro Encinas proposed the creation of an Anti-Corruption Czar. (November 2010)

Mexico - Institutions lack accountability and transparency in spending

A Center for Research in Teaching and Economic Development (CIDE) study found that several Mexican government institutions, such as the Supreme Court, use funds with little accountability or transparency. Upon noticing irregularities in spending, Mexican President Felipe Calderón has called for more transparency and accountability. (November 2010)

Mexico - 'El Grande' accuses two Federal Police officers of involvement with cartel

Mexican Federal Secretary of Public Security Genaro García Luna stated that he was willing to initiate an investigation into two Federal police officials after 'El Grande,' an alleged leader of Beltrán-Leyva Cartel, implicated the Regional Security Coordinator of Federal Police and the Chief of the Intelligence Division for the Federal Police for their involvement with the cartel. (December 2010)

Mexico - 20 percent of human trafficking in Latin America occurs in Mexico

Nearly 1.2 million people in Mexico are human trafficking victims, composing 20 percent of Latin American trafficking victims. The Regional Coalition Against the Trafficking of Women and Girls in Latin America and the Caribbean (CATWALC) elaborated that trafficking, mainly tied to drug cartel networks, is concentrated along the Mexican borders and the Pacific area. (December 2010)

Mexico - Police capture Los Zetas leader; disrupt drug trade route

On 1 December 2010, Mexican Federal Police captured regional Los Zetas leader Eduardo Ramirez Valencia in Hidalgo in an operation that interrupted a major drug route between the Caribbean and the United States. Ramirez, an associate of Los Zetas leader Heriberto Lazcano Lazcano, allegedly handled drug-smuggling operations from Panama and the Dominican Republic.

Guatemala - Venezuelan woman charged with money laundering

On 29 November 2010, agents from Guatemala’s Division of Information Analysis and Anti-narcotics (DAIA) arrested a Venezuelan woman for money laundering in Guatemala City’s La Aurora International airport. The women declared she was carrying US$9,500 to customs but a search by airport authorities revealed she was carrying US$54,000 hidden on her body and luggage.

El Salvador - Decree for firearm law approved

El Salvador’s ruling party, FMLN, criticized the 120-day registration period for firearms approved on 25 November 2010, arguing that the act opens the possibility of the registration of weapons of “dubious origins.” The decree establishes no maximum firearm registration limit, while the current law allows each person the opportunity to register one gun every two years.

El Salvador - Salvadoran military personnel linked to Los Zetas

Two members of the Armed Forces of El Salvador (FAES) arrested last week by the U.S. DEA are being investigated for alleged links with Los Zetas. Carlos Enrique Nieto Martinez (retired) and José Arturo Rodríguez Martínez are implicated in the supply of weapons and combat training of members of Los Zetas. (December 2010)

Honduras - Congressman Juan Jesús Madrid Deras murdered

On 2 December 2010, a group of men armed with AK-47’s attacked Honduran Congressman Juan Jesús Madrid Deras and injured his bodyguard at a political event in Copán Ruinas. Despite running for safety, Madrid was followed by the attackers and killed.

Venezuela - Chinese to invest heavily in Orinoco Oil Belt

PDVSA and Chinese petroleum companies will develop projects concerning resource exploitation in the Orinoco Oil Belt, with the investment totaling almost US$40 billion over the next 5 years. The agreements will make Venezuela the third largest supplier of oil to China. (December 2010)

Bolivia - Gov't and Brazil to cooperate against transnational crime

On 30 November 2010, Bolivian Justice Minister Sacha Llorenti and Brazilian Justice Minister Luiz Paulo Barreto met in Brazil and agreed to strengthen bilateral cooperation in efforts against narco-trafficking and money laundering in both countries. Additionally, discussions included joint operations along the Bolivia-Brazil border and the use of the latest technology to modernize control and security in airports.

Colombia - Police investigating Chinese organized crime-FARC connections

Colombian authorities are investigating the link between the FARC and Chinese criminal groups after they discovered two Chinese-made rifles in 'Mono Jojoy's' camp in La Escalera. (November 2010)

Brazil - Petrobras discovers new crude oil deposit near Tefé

Brazilian state oil company Petrobras discovered a crude oil deposit near the town of Tefé, about 630 kilometers west of Manuas, in the Amazon region. The Igarape Chibata exploratory well, located in the Solimoes Basin, has reached a depth of 3,485 kilometers. (November 2010)

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