HomeNewsBriefAre Honduras Security Policies Behind Drops in Homicide, Extortion?
BRIEF

Are Honduras Security Policies Behind Drops in Homicide, Extortion?

EXTORTION / 19 FEB 2014 BY MICHAEL LOHMULLER EN

Measures taken by Honduran authorities to combat crime are being credited for a declining trend in the homicide rate and a 75 percent reduction in extortion, though it remains to be seen whether gains in either area will be sustainable.

The latest statistics released by the Violence Observatory at the National Autonomous University of Honduras (UNAH) show a six-point reduction in the homicide rate between 2012 and 2013, from 85.5 to 79 murders per 100,000, with the overall number of murders falling from 7,172 to 6,757 in that time, reported El Heraldo .

The drop is largely a result of a reduction in murders during the last four months of the year, which averaged 500 murders a month, compared to 595 over the rest of the year. The decline coincided with the deployment of the new Military Police of Public Order (PMOP)

Authorities of Honduras' National Anti-extortion Force (FNA) have also announced a 75 percent reduction in reported extortions since cell phone service in the country's 24 prisons began being blocked on February 14.

However, inmates are already attempting to smuggle satellite phones into prison to counter the measure, according to authorities.

InSight Crime Analysis

The decrease in the homicide rate in Honduras is a welcome development, but despite the apparent correlation, it is too soon to attribute this to the deployment of the military police.

President Juan Orlando Hernandez will likely claim the news as a sign of further progress under his new 'Operation Morazon' security strategy, yet doubts remain that "mano dura" ("iron fist") security policies and the militarization of police forces is an effective long-term crime reduction strategy. Such policies have been common in Central America, but have been shown in some cases to increase violence and strengthen gangs.

SEE ALSO: Honduras News and Profiles

The strategies employed by Honduran officials to counter prison extortion, however, may be an example of an effective policy easily replicable in other Latin American countries experiencing similar levels of extortion from prisons, such as ColombiaGuatemala, and Venezuela. However, such a policy comes with pitfalls, such as resistance from communities surrounding prisons complaining of interference with cell phone signals and, as already noted in Honduras, the use of satellite phones in prison.  

share icon icon icon

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.

DONATE

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

We encourage readers to copy and distribute our work for non-commercial purposes, with attribution to InSight Crime in the byline and links 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.

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.

DONATE

Related Content

ARGENTINA / 29 JAN 2021

While unrest gripped much of Latin America in 2019, it was the coronavirus that took center stage and ripped through…

ENVIRONMENTAL CRIME / 14 MAY 2021

Both banks of the salty canal near the town of Kaukira show e vestiges of the boom-bust nature of life…

ELITES AND CRIME / 16 FEB 2021

The department of La Paz does not house any major transnational criminal economies or established criminal actors.

About InSight Crime

WORK WITH US

Open Position: Full Stack WordPress Developer

28 NOV 2022

As Full Stack WordPress Developer You Will: Work collaboratively with other developers and designers to maintain and improve organizational standards.Demonstrate a high level of attention to detail, and implement best…

THE ORGANIZATION

Join Us This #GivingTuesday in Exposing Organized Crime

24 NOV 2022

For over twelve years, InSight Crime has contributed to the global dialogue on organized crime and corruption. Our work has provided policymakers, analysts, academics, journalists, and the general public with…

THE ORGANIZATION

Like Crime, Our Coverage Knows No Borders

18 NOV 2022

The nature of global organized crime means that while InSight Crime focuses on Latin America, we also follow criminal dynamics worldwide. InSight Crime investigator Alessandro Ford covers the connections between Latin American and European…

THE ORGANIZATION

Using Data to Expose Crime

11 NOV 2022

Co-director Jeremy McDermott made a virtual presentation at a conference hosted by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC). The ‘Sixth International Conference on Governance, Crime, and Justice…

THE ORGANIZATION

InSight Crime ON AIR

4 NOV 2022

InSight Crime Co-director Steven Dudley was interviewed for the podcast The Rosenberg Case: A Tale of Murder, Corruption, and Conspiracy in Guatemala, which explores the potential involvement of then president, Álvaro Colom,…