Caracas, Oct 25 (EFE).- The Venezuelan government on Wednesday carried out a “prison security operation” in the Tocuyito prison in the northern state of Carabobo, said Interior and Justice Minister Remigio Ceballos. The operation comes a month after one carried out in Tocorón Prison, where the transnational criminal organization known as “Tren de Aragua” originated.
The Tocuyito prison, with more than 2,000 inmates the largest in Venezuela, was “totally” intervened on Wednesday and authorities found “material of criminal interest” that will be revealed “soon,” according to the Minister of the Interior and Justice, Remigio Ceballos.
The minister said that the Bolivarian National Police and the Bolivarian National Guard (militarized police) had done an “extraordinary job” in the “seizure” of the prison, as part of a “plan to revitalize the prison system. He also admitted that “it is known that some crimes have been committed from some prisons.”
“We are putting an end to all this in order to guarantee peace, tranquility and the well-being of all Venezuelans, and to take control of all these illegal activities,” Ceballos said in statements to the state-run VTV.
The minister also claimed that a “violent opposition” that “wants to continue with violence” has “tried to use the penitentiary centers to fuel the insurrection against the Venezuelan state.”
And added that 99% of the penitentiary centers are “well organized” and “there is very little left” to “guarantee the control of those” where “some special adjustments must be made.”
Venezuela’s criminal prisons
This operation in Tocuyito comes one month after the intervention in the Tocorón prison, which had been taken over by the international criminal gang “Tren de Aragua”
The international criminal gang “Tren de Aragua” is an organization that emerged in Venezuela in 2014 and has expanded to other countries such as Chile, Peru, Bolivia and Colombia.
The prison had hotel-like facilities including a swimming pool, nightclub and mini-zoo, and prisoners were free to move about.
The authorities said that with that intervention the “Tren de Aragua” had been “completely” dismantled, but its leader, Hector Guerrero, alias “Niño Guerrero,” who was serving a 17-year sentence, and his lieutenants had escaped through a tunnel with other prisoners shortly before the intervention. Guerrero is since on the run. EFE