HomeNewsBriefGuatemala Turns Security Cameras on its Own Police
BRIEF

Guatemala Turns Security Cameras on its Own Police

GUATEMALA / 16 APR 2013 BY MIRIAM WELLS EN

The Guatemalan government is installing cameras in police patrol cars to monitor its own officers, as part of the effort to tackle corruption and criminal links within the force.

The $45 million, four-year contract with Geoinformatica will see two cameras installed in 1,300 National Police (PNC) patrol cars. One will be focused inside the car, while the other will look towards the front of the vehicle.

The cameras will transmit images in real time that will be monitored at a control center, also managed by Geoinformatica, while the PNC will contract its own supervision service to monitor the functioning of the system, reported elPeriodico.

InSight Crime Analysis

Guatemala has a history of corruption within its police force, an issue which President Otto Perez has declared to be a priority of his administration. The camera installation is the latest step in a program of police reform which, until now, has relied on confidence testing to identify corrupt officers, as Interior Minister Mauricio Lopez pointed out. The reform process saw 194 officers sacked for criminal activity during 2012, and 22 more in the first 50 days of this year. Cameras are not the only technology being considered -- in October, Lopez announced that police badges would be fitted with microchips to track officers' movements.

The police force is also poorly trained, understaffed and underfunded, and has a record of abuse as well as corruption, as set out in an International Crisis Group study last year. Perez's stated determination to reform the police is a positive sign, but, as noted by Crisis Group, there is a lack of government funding and political backing for the project. Meanwhile, as violence fuelled by organized crime remains high, Guatemala is increasingly turning to the military for domestic security. Perez, a former general, has created four new military brigades to fight organized crime  since assuming the presidency in January 2012.

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.

Tags

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

ELITES AND CRIME / 1 DEC 2021

As day broke in Guatemala City on August 31, 2016, a judge named Carlos Ruano anxiously awaited a meeting with one of Guatemala’s most powerful…

EL SALVADOR / 11 MAY 2021

A new report suggests women are increasingly playing an active role in the extortion activities of Central American gangs --…

BRAZIL / 24 MAR 2022

The 2021 ranking of the world's most violent cities predictably features a heavy presence by Latin American and Caribbean population…

About InSight Crime

LA ORGANIZACIÓN

Extensive Coverage of our Chronicles of a Cartel Bodyguard

23 SEP 2022

Our recent investigation, A Cartel Bodyguard in Mexico’s 'Hot Land', has received extensive media coverage.

THE ORGANIZATION

InSight Crime, American University Host Illegal Fishing Panel

19 SEP 2022

InSight Crime and the Center for Latin American & Latino Studies (CLALS) at American University discussed the findings of a joint investigation on IUU fishing at a September 9 conference.

THE ORGANIZATION

Impact on the Media Landscape

9 SEP 2022

InSight Crime’s first investigation on the Dominican Republic made an immediate impact on the Dominican media landscape, with major news outlets republishing and reprinting our findings, including in …

THE ORGANIZATION

InSight Crime Sharpens Its Skills

2 SEP 2022

Last week, the InSight Crime team gathered for our annual retreat in Colombia, where we discussed our vision and strategy for the next 12 months.  During the week, we also learned how to…

THE ORGANIZATION

Colombia’s Fragile Path to Peace Begins to Take Shape

26 AUG 2022

InSight Crime is charting the progress of President Gustavo Petro’s agenda as he looks to revolutionize Colombia’s security policy, opening dialogue with guerrillas, reforming the military and police, and…