HomeNewsBrief5 Killed in Police Clash With Venezuela Political Collectives
BRIEF

5 Killed in Police Clash With Venezuela Political Collectives

COLECTIVOS / 9 OCT 2014 BY ELYSSA PACHICO EN

A bloody clash between police and militant collectives in Caracas may feed suspicions that the collectives played a role in the recent dramatic murder of a Venezuelan Congressman, and raises the specter of more violence ahead as the investigation into the murder continues. 

The gunfight reportedly broke out as police were attempting to raid a house located along a central Venezuelan highway. Five members of two militant collectives, known as the 5th of March (5 de Marzo) and Shield of the Revolution (Escudo de la Revolucion), were left dead, including two collective leaders. The brother of one of these leaders said the victim, Jose Odreman, was shot 40 times, reported El Nacional

El Nacional reported that residents of the building where the shootout took place said that there was no "confrontation" with police: the officials had killed the members of the collective without being fired at first. The national police agency, CICPC, said that those killed were "criminals."

The head of Venezuela's national police agency said that the raid was not connected to investigations into the death of Congressman Robert Serra, reported El Nacional. Serra was the youngest member of Congress and a star of the ruling socialist party, until he was found bludgeoned and stabbed to death in his home on October 1.

InSight Crime reported last week that Serra was believed to have ties to the various militant collectives that operate in Caracas. Odreman, the collective leader slain in the recent raid, had published a photo of himself alongside Serra on Twitter about a month before Serra's death (see image above).

InSight Crime Analysis

Some of these militant collectives began forming in Caracas' poorer, outer neighborhoods as early as the 1970s in response to the lack of proper policing. Under President Hugo Chavez's government, many collectives began receiving weapons and training from the state. Today, the collectives by and large support the "Bolivarian Revolution," and several of them were accused of participating in violent attacks against protesters earlier this year, in close collaboration with security forces.

 SEE ALSO: Venezuela News and Profiles

This recent confrontation with the collectives may be akin to stirring up a hornet's nest. According to El Nacional, the 5th of March collective was a coalition of 100 smaller collectives. Those that are armed may yet react aggressively to the death of their leader. The government also risks alienating those in the communities that support the collectives, as many view the collectives as the most reliable local security force to protect them from criminals.  

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

INFOGRAPHICS / 20 MAY 2018

In May 2011, a 26-year-old prison gang leader held 4,000 members of the Venezuelan security forces, backed by tanks and…

VENEZUELA / 16 MAR 2012

Venezuela's defense minister announced plans to post 15,000 troops to fight drug trafficking and armed groups on the borders with…

GENDER AND CRIME / 16 JUN 2020

The rescue of three Venezuelan forced into sex trafficking in Mexico City has once again shone a spotlight on the…

About InSight Crime

THE ORGANIZATION

Apure Investigation Makes Headlines

22 OCT 2021

InSight Crime’s investigation into the battle for the Venezuelan border state of Apure resonated in both Colombian and Venezuelan media. A dozen outlets picked up the report, including Venezuela’s…

THE ORGANIZATION

InSight Crime Tackles Illegal Fishing

15 OCT 2021

In October, InSight Crime and American University’s Center for Latin American and Latino Studies (CLALS) began a year-long project on illegal, unreported, unregulated (IUU) fishing in…

THE ORGANIZATION

InSight Crime Featured in Handbook for Reporting on Organized Crime

8 OCT 2021

In late September, the Global Investigative Journalism Network (GIJN) published an excerpt of its forthcoming guide on reporting organized crime in Indonesia.

THE ORGANIZATION

Probing Organized Crime in Haiti

1 OCT 2021

InSight Crime has made it a priority to investigate organized crime in Haiti, where an impotent state is reeling after the July assassination of President Jovenel Moïse, coupled with an…

THE ORGANIZATION

Emergency First Aid in Hostile Environments

24 SEP 2021

At InSight Crime's annual treat, we ramped up hostile environment and emergency first aid training for our 40-member staff, many of whom conduct on-the-ground investigations in dangerous corners of the region.