Honduras rolls out widespread gang crackdown

By Thomson Reuters Jun 15, 2024 | 12:15 AM

TEGUCIGALPA (Reuters) – Honduran authorities on Friday announced a slate of measures intended to cut down on organized crime, including the construction of a new prison, collective trials and terrorist designations for gang members.

President Xiomara Castro said security forces should be deployed to “urgently execute interventions across parts of the country with the highest incidences of gang crimes such as murders for hire, drug and firearm trafficking, extortion, kidnapping and money laundering.”

Government leaders announced plans to immediately build a prison set to hold some 20,000 in the sparsely populated area between the eastern departments of Olancha and Gracias a Dios.

They also said the country’s Congress must reform the penal code so that members of criminal gangs who commit specific crimes, such as those listed by Castro, be designated as “terrorists” and face collective trials.

(Reporting by Gustavo Palencia; Writing by Sarah Morland; Editing by Kylie Madry)