FARC leaders negotiating in Havana have vowed to enter politics if a peace deal is signed. But as many as 20 percent of their subordinates could join criminal gangs and continue lucrative cocaine and illegal gold mining operations, according to the Washington Office on Latin America.
After several years of decreasing or stable homicide rates, the number of killings in Costa Rica spiked in 2015, leading law enforcement officials to call for more aggressive prevention, investigation and prosecution of organized crime.
Costa Rica authorities conducted 29 raids Tuesday in multiple locations throughout the Central Valley targeting a large organized criminal network directed from La Reforma Prison, outside the Costa Rican capital.
“I want to once more ratify Costa Rica’s opinion in the sense that those ills — organized crime, terrorism — must be fought off in all ways possible by the international community,” the president said.
Two journalists were murdered in the city of Mazatenango on March 10 and a third on March 13 in the nearby town of Chicacao. Guatemalan Interior Minister Mauricio López said Monday that the recent crimes could be related to a drug trafficking ring that operates in the area.
One of the reporters killed, Danilo López, had been receiving threats after he reported on corruption in the area. Authorities were searching the homes of two mayors and one former mayor as part of the investigation.