Bolivian Police Arrest 12 Gunmen

By Dialogo
April 24, 2013

A total of 12 gunmen were arrested by the Bolivian Police, including Colombian, Argentinean and Brazilian nationals, after several crimes related to drug trafficking took place in the city of Santa Cruz, according to reports from the Ministry of Government on April 21.

In a statement sent to AFP the ministry said that state security institutions arrested two Bolivian hitmen on April 20, in addition to the other ten captured in late March “as a result of the ‘war against assassins’ declared by the government.”

“With the arrest of the two criminals, a total of 12 hitmen have been captured by the Police, who have been deployed in the city in order to disrupt the wave of settling scores and armed robbery,” the institution added.

Among the captured gunmen are Colombian national Fabián Alberto Arrolave Ladino, Argentinean-born Mario Sergio Mancilla, and Brazilian citizen Adao Nilson Sosa da Silva, accused of killing three people on the street, one of which was a Peruvian citizen that owed about $300,000 to a Colombian man allegedly linked to drug trafficking.

On April 18, the government also said that another Colombian hitman had been arrested, although the arrest was related to a drug trafficking issue.

Santa Cruz, the most highly populated and prosperous city in Bolivia, located 900 km east of La Paz, was affected by a wave of street murders in the last few weeks.

One of the killings that was perpetrated by the Brazilian national according to the government, was filmed by a security camera in the street and was later broadcast on private television stations and YouTube.

The Police are investigating at least nine cases of settling of scores that have presumably been carried out by hitmen.