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El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, and Guatemala: Gangs Cost Over $1 Billion Last Year and Reach Over 100,000 Members

Article Summary:

Surging cost of violence in Central American broke the $ 1 billion dollar mark last year. In El Salvador and Honduras alone, youth gangs have become real military arms of organized crime and now have over 100,000 members spread out in Guatemala, Nicaragua, Dominican Republic, El Salvador and Honduras. Unless the violence decreases, the region faces a crisis of crime and insecurity.

Photo Credit: Estrategia y Negocios

Original Article Text From Estrategia y Negocios via Google Translate :

Million dollar losses for the violence in Central America

The president of El Salvador, Mauricio Funes, said Wednesday, in the transfer of the Presidency of the Central Military forum, that the region loses U.S. $ 1,300 million a year by violence.

“The region faces a crisis of crime and insecurity which costs an average of U.S. $ 1,300 million in annual costs of violence and insecurity, as revealed by the latest report on the subject of the World Bank,” he said.

Funes led the handover ceremony of El Salvador to Honduras, the Presidency of the Council of the Central American Armed Forces Conference (C-FAC), a forum comprising also Guatemala, Nicaragua and the Dominican Republic.

Funes said in his speech the importance of cooperation between the armed forces of the region through the C-FAC in actions against scourges such as organized crime or drug trafficking activities and help in natural disasters.

The Salvadoran president regretted that his country “is one that takes the brunt” of the economic consequences of violence in the region.

“We lose about 11% of our GDP (Gross Domestic Product) each year to address the violence generated by organized crime gangs and to afford to produce their criminal activities in any order,” he said.

Funes said that the Armed Forces of the five members of the C-FAC “managed to seize an average of 234,000 kilograms of cocaine, marijuana and heroin in the region”, where “more than 67,000 people were arrested for various crimes including drug trafficking, theft and theft, “but did not specify over what period.

“These crimes have been reinforced by the presence of criminal groups have increased year by year their ranks, to become real structures of organized crime, as is the case of gangs,” he said.

The president stressed that “these youth organizations have become real military arms of organized crime and now have over 100,000 members in Guatemala, Nicaragua, Dominican Republic, El Salvador and Honduras.”

He said that “these two countries, El Salvador and Honduras, around 70% of the total members of these groups already active in drug dealing strongly as big cartel hitmen.”

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From Estrategia y Negocios

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