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Latino Daily News

Sunday August 15, 2010

Guatemala’s Former Interior Minister and a One-Time Presidential Candidate Wanted for Murder

Some say Alejandro Giammattei, former Presidential candidate of Guatemala and Carlos Vielmann, the country’s former Interior Minister were just doing their job to curb violence in the country – the United Nations and Guatemalan prosecutors see it differently. 

As Guatemala struggles with its high crime rate, one of the highest in Latin America, the country is reeled with the news that Giammattei, during his tenor as head of prisons and Vielman are charged with organizing the execution of inmates during a prison raid back in 2006.  The Pavon prison was known for its lawlessness and for being controlled by the inmates.  There were drug labs, restaurants and even video arcades built and managed by the prisoners.  Giammattei wanted to change all that and carried out a massive raid with the assistance of the Interior Minister. 

After the approximate 1,000 police and soldiers commandeered the prison back to lawfulness and after a massive shoot out, many prisoners were dead.  The UN and Guatemalan prosecutors, in the course of an investigation, say 7 prisoners were singled out for execution and did not die in the course of the raid.  Giamettei has now been arrested and Vielmann is being sought.