• Connect with us on Linkedin

Colombia to Invest 'Unprecedented' $2.3 Billion in Citizen Security

Santos speaks at citizen security conference Santos speaks at citizen security conference

The Colombian government plans to invest a total of $2.3 billion in citizen security for the 2012 to 2015 period, highlighting how localized criminal operations are gaining ground on international drug trafficking as the country's primary security threat.

Linkedin
Google +

President Juan Manuel Santos called the funding, which amounts to 2.4% of the country's 2013 national budget, an "unprecedented investment" aimed at improving citizen security. The scheme -- which will be managed by both the national government and 24 municipal governments -- includes the creation of integrated security plans for the participating municipalities and the addition of 25,000 police to the national force, of which 10,000 have already joined.

The president said efforts so far have resulted in a 19 percent reduction in violent deaths and the reduction of robbery by 38 percent for residences, 25 percent for shops, 16 percent for vehicles and 10 percent for individuals, reported El Colombiano

Also included in the budget is an ongoing initiative targeting micro-trafficking -- street level drug dealing -- as well as a new offensive announced by Santos to tackle contraband smuggling, which he said would see a "frontal assault" targeting groups involved in the trade and the legitimate businesses that support it. 

InSight Crime Analysis

Santos' budget announcement followed shortly after the murder of a US Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) agent in Bogota by assailants believed to have been attempting an express kidnapping. The murder, thought to be connected to a local criminal network of thieves, put the issue of citizen security front and center.

Earlier in June, Colombia's national police chief announced police took down 786 criminal gangs in 2012 and stated that ongoing operations to counter micro-trafficking have been 92 percent effective thus far. Though these numbers were framed as successes, they also highlight the proliferation of small-scale organized criminal activity in Colombia, which has been fuelled by the fragmentation of larger criminal organizations.

Small criminal networks often do not operate in isolation. In June, one Colombian official called contraband trafficking a "national security phenomenon" after contraband networks believed to launder money for the FARC were linked to the murder of an official from the country's tax and customs police (DIAN). Micro-traffickers similarly have connections with larger criminal groups such as the Urabeños, who serve as wholesalers or take a cut of profits.

Linkedin
Google +

---

What are your thoughts? Click here to send InSight Crime your comments.

We also encourage readers to copy and distribute our work for non-commercial purposes, provided that it is attributed to InSight Crime in the byline, with a link to the original at both the top and bottom of the article. Check the Creative Commons website for more details of how to share our work, and please send us an email if you use an article.

InSight Crime Search

The Complete Organized Crime Database on the Americas

InSight Crime Social

facebooktwittergooglelinkedin

InSight Crime Special Series

The Zetas in Nuevo Laredo

Los Zetas in Nuevo Laredo

After the capture of Zetas boss "Z40," Nuevo Laredo is bracing itself for the worst. This investigation breaks down what makes the city such an important trafficking corridor, and what it will take for the Zetas to maintain their grip on the city.

See entire series »

 

Uruguay's Marijuana Bill

Uruguay: Marijuana, Organized Crime and the Politics of Drugs

Uruguay is poised to become the first country on the planet to regulate the production, sale, and distribution of the drug.

See entire series »

El Salvador's Gang Truce

El Salvador's Gang Truce

The truce between El Salvador's two largest gangs -- the MS-13 and the Barrio 18 -- opens up new possibilities in how to deal with

See entire series »

Juarez After The War

Juarez After The War

As a bitter war between rival cartels grinds to an end, Ciudad Juarez has lost the title of world murder capital, and is moving towards something more like normality.

See entire series »

The Zetas And The Battle For Monterrey

The Zetas and the Battle for Monterrey

InSight Crime delves into the Zetas' battle for Mexico’s industrial capital, Monterrey, getting to the essence of a criminal gang that defies easy definition.

See entire series »

Slavery in Latin America

Slavery in Latin America

InSight Crime coordinated an investigation into modern slavery, looking at how Latin America’s criminal groups traffic human beings and force them to work as slaves.

See entire series »

FARC, Peace and Criminalization

FARC, Peace and Possible Criminalization

The possibility of ending nearly 50 years of civil conflict is being dangled before Colombia. While the vast majority of the Colombian public want to see peace, the enemies of the negotiations appear to be strong, and the risks inherent in the process are high.

See entire series »

Displacement in Latin America

Displacement in Latin America

InSight Crime coordinated an investigation into the new face of displacement in Latin America, where organized criminal groups are expanding and forcing people to flee.

See entire series »

Target: Migrants

Target: Migrants

The growth of organized crime in Mexico and Central America has led to an increase in violence and insecurity across the region, posing challenges to citizens, public security forces, and travelers.

See entire series »

Zetas in Guatemala

The Zetas in Guatemala

Mexico's Zetas have taken Guatemala by storm, and they are testing this country and the rest of the region: fail this test, and Central America sinks deeper into the abyss.

See entire series »

Most Read

El Salvador Gangs Teach Honduras Counterparts Secret Codes

El Salvador Gangs Teach Honduras Counterparts Secret Codes

Imprisoned gang leaders in Honduras are receiving instructions from their counterparts in El Salvador on how to transmit coded messages, reported El Heraldo, highlighting the collaboration between gangs in the two countries.

Read more

Internal Displacement in Brazil: An Inconvenient Truth?

Internal Displacement in Brazil: An Inconvenient Truth?

As Brazil works to project the image of a nation that is effectively addressing security challenges in its major cities, one important indicator -- internal displacement -- is being overlooked. 

Read more

El Salvador Investigates both Sets of Gang Truce Negotiators

El Salvador Investigates both Sets of Gang Truce Negotiators

El Salvador's attorney general has confirmed that his office is investigating the actions of both sets of negotiators in the country's gang truce, suggesting there will be no more semi-official attempts at mediation with gangs...

Read more

Latest Criminal Profile