Monday, April 27, 2009

President Announces Expropriation Policy

President Alvaro Colom said on Saturday that all persons who rent or sell houses, warehouses, and vehicles to drug dealers will be included in the blacklist of organized crime and whose assets will be expropriated.

The president announced the measure as a result of what happened last Friday on the Pacific Highway where a group of drug traffickers killed five agents of the SAIC, Guatemala's drug enforcement police.

"All the properties and companies that are providing fronts for these criminals are being investigated. Whoever rented the warehouse involved yesterday, all their business dealings and trade relations are already being investigated,"said Colom.

According to the president, all those people who rent premises and vehicles, or even sold to drug trafficking groups will be investigated.

"We will see where and how the purchases were paid for, verify relationships with the criminals, and then they fall onto the blacklist of drug traffickers," he warned.

He stressed: "It is important that entrepreneurs and property owners, when renting something, do it with contracts, because if not they become complicit with the criminals.

According to the chief executive, a meeting of the National Security Council will be convened. The president cited as an example those properties where cocaine and illegal weapons were found will be subject to a process of expropriation unless it is found that the owners were deceived.

"This government is already prepared, and prosecution is the bottom line," said Colom.

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