Guatemalans Think Gang Problem Getting Worse

August 3, 2007

GUATEMALA CITY – Most Guatemalans believe that youth gangs are more violent than they were five years ago, their members live better and have links with drug trafficking, the police and the army, according to a survey published July 23 by the daily Siglo Veintiuno.

The study, carried out by Costa Rican polling firm Demoscopia S.A., reveals that 89.3% of the 1,200 people polled between June 28 and July 8 said that the gangs are more violent than they were five years ago.

The poll found that 85% think that the gangs have the capacity to organize themselves and 84% said that the groups have links with drug trafficking and organized crime.

The survey adds that 84.3% of Guatemalans believe that the gang members have a higher living standard than they did five years ago.

And 80.4% of those polled said they thought the gang members had established alliances with corrupt cops, while 61.8% said that they have formed alliances with the army.

Also, 54.9% said that they think gangs have links with corrupt politicians and 58.4% said they felt that gangs have ties with business leaders.

Of those surveyed, 82.1% said that the measures implemented by the government to break up the gangs in Guatemala have not been effective.

In Guatemala, according to the national police, some 60,000 young people belong to gangs, the most-feared of which are the Mara Salvatrucha and Mara 18.

 

You may be interested

Of snow, kindness and Northern Lights: a Costa Rican in Manitoba, Canada
Please Send Coffee!
869 views
Please Send Coffee!
869 views

Of snow, kindness and Northern Lights: a Costa Rican in Manitoba, Canada

Gustavo Díaz Cruz - December 14, 2017

My mom named me Gustavo Adolfo. I was born in Puntarenas, next to the sea, but my home was in…

Response to disaster: aid successes, struggles in post-Maria Puerto Rico
Weather
912 views
Weather
912 views

Response to disaster: aid successes, struggles in post-Maria Puerto Rico

John McPhaul - December 13, 2017

As Costa Rica joins many other nations in looking back upon the horrendous 2017 hurricane season, longtime Tico Times contributor…

Looking back at Hurricane Maria: the initial impact
Weather
1943 views
Weather
1943 views

Looking back at Hurricane Maria: the initial impact

John McPhaul - December 12, 2017

As Costa Rica joins many other nations in looking back upon the devastating 2017 hurricane season, longtime Tico Times contributor…