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Jul 18, 2016

The GSU is Back to Address Escalating Gang Tension

John Saldivar

The Lucas murder is certainly center stage, even if Belize does see more than its share of violent crime. In fact the press conference hosted by the Ministry of National Security today was allegedly to update the public on new policies which will now come into play. According to Minister John Saldivar, the murder pace is on par with last year and may even exceed that number. Cabinet has thus determined to act, and has appointed a task force to come up with solutions. But in the meantime, guess who’s back with the full blessing of government – if you guessed the feared Gang Suppression Unit, you would be right.

 

John Saldivar, Minister of National Security

“There needs to be a renewed focus on gangs and their leaders. While we fully embrace the concept of community policing and understand the importance of intervention ad mediation, it is obvious that some of these gang leaders are beyond this approach. We must therefore ensure that strict policing strategies are used to deal with those who make a mockery of our intervention and mediation by talking nice during the day and killing at night. The mandate of the Gang Suppression Unit has therefore been renewed to deal firmly and swiftly with gang leaders and members to bring them to justice, remove them from our neighborhoods and communities and place them in jail, and from being able to influence and entice our youth into a life of crime. The GSU will be strengthened and expanded to be more effective in intelligence gathering on gangs, in analyzing gang trends, in identifying problem areas and in consistently targeting these most violent gangs in order to reduce gang related crime and violence.”

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