Thanks to the cooperation of the U.S. Embassy and the Ministry of Public Security, as of September 29, Costa Rica has 17 new drug and explosives detection canine agents, guide officers, and specialized instructors, who will strengthen the security work the various police forces carry out in the country.
James Kenney, program officer of the Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs (INL) of the U.S. Embassy in Costa Rica, emphasized that “the canine program represents just one of several ways in which the United States is working together with police forces to strengthen and improve their capabilities. Today, it is with great satisfaction that we share that we are committed to efforts to support the National Police Academy [ANP] in its process to transform into a Regional Training Center of Excellence.”
Costa Rican officers, with support from Salvadoran instructors gave two courses over three months at the Canine School located at the ANP headquarters in Pocococí de Limón, which has a training field and ideal areas for the canines, created as a result of the collaboration of the U.S. government and Costa Rica.
One of the courses was aimed at 16 detector dog handlers, officers working for the Public Force; Border Police; Air Surveillance Service (SVA); Presidential Protection Unit; Penitentiary Police and the Municipal Police of San José, San Ramón de Alajuela, Belén de Heredia, Montes de Oca, and Moravia in San José.
Another eight police officers took the course for canine detectors instructors.
All of this is aimed at developing knowledge, skills, and abilities to deal with the different scenarios faced by Costa Rican police forces.
Both the 17 canine agents of these 16 specialists in drug detection and one more in explosives, as well as the guide officers and instructors are prepared in the technique of introduction of odors, execution of techniques and fundamental procedures in the handling of the detector dog, and the application of procedures to direct the canine team.