Gang Violence

Latin America

How have gangs influenced Latin America on a national and international level?

Top Five Criminal Dynamics

  1. Booming domestic drug markets
  2. Organized groups splintering into fractions
  3. Drug transits and trafficking
  4. Civil Wars in El Salvador, Guatemala, and Nicaragua
  5. Corruption of government

Violent Concerns Include...

  • Gangs
  • Extortion
  • Kidnapping
  • Human trafficking
  • Drug, auto, and weapon smuggling

"A person is more likely to get away with murder in Latin America than anywhere else in the world"

Risk & Root Factors for Juvenile Delinquency

  • Marginalized urban areas
  • High levels of youth unemployment
  • Little education opportunities
  • Inadequate justice systems
  • High availability of guns and weapons
  • Dysfunctional families and domestic violence

"[Gangs] made the people scared... it's kind of like they control you."

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"It is really dangerous to be the friend of a gangster."

Interview with Denis

How is the US different from Latin America?

- Weather, technology, good system of government

How is crime maintained in Latin America?

- Brutal, forceful; the police does not control it, it is controlled by an army

How did gangs affect your life?

- It made the people scared because if you don't follow what they say then you're in trouble, they control the people so much that there is a 5 pm curfew for safety to stay safe in your own house. Denis said that if you are under 16 then it is okay and you will be safe to go to school but any older than they are seen as a threat or an enemy to gangs

Do you think gang violence will clear up in Latin America?

- "It will clear up but it will spread around the world."

Where do you think the worst gangs are in Latin America?

- El Salvador, Honduras, Guatemala