Venezuelan authorities have taken control of the Monagas Judicial Confinement Center, located in the La Pica parish, Maturín municipality of Monagas state. According to unofficial reports, the prison was approached by a contingent of civil and military law enforcemnt agents who had been in the surroundings of the prison from days before.
Venezuelan Minister for Interior, Justice and Peace General Remigio Ceballos announced on Friday, November 3, that the Operation Gran Cacique Guacaipuro was launched on the prison, and it came under the control of the security forces around 4:00 a.m. on Friday.
“We have put an end to the prison mafia, following precise instructions from our Commander-in-Chief Nicolás Maduro,” Ceballos stated in a short video posted on social media accounts of the Ministry of the Interior, Justice and Peace. “We continue to move forward in the revitalization of the penitentiary system and to guarantee the protection of the people. We will continue moving forward. We will win!”
Centro Penitenciario de la Región Oriental Monagas "La Pica" https://t.co/QWRxjI66Ei
— MPPRIJP (@MijpVzla) November 3, 2023
Minister Ceballos further reported that a small group of inmates opposed the takeover, but conceded after a negotiation process. Images and videos of the operation showed special tactical teams deployed in the prison, something that was not seen in the recent operations launched in other prisons. Images also showed an underground infrastructure with escape tunnels, similar to the one seen in Tocorón Prison after it was taken over by the Venezuelan armed forces some weeks ago.
The 1,496 inmates of the prison were relocated to the Nelson Mandela New Man Training Center in the vicinity. Law enforcement agents carried out an identification protocol to update the inmate population database.
In the Monagas Judicial Confinement Center, commonly know as La Pica, there was a criminal gang commanded by Pedro Miguel González Mata, also known as Pedro El Rapidito, who together with his brothers carried out extortion and other criminal activity in the eastern part of Venezuela, with the collaboration of smaller criminal cells.
Pedro El Rapidito served a sentence of 9 years and four months for the crime of illegal concealment of narcotic and psychotropic substances and possession of a firearm. He was arrested on February 14, 2014, and sentenced on April 22 of that year, as ruled by Judge Jorge Alejandro Cárdenas Mora of the First Trial Court of Monagas.
La Pica is one of the six prisons in Venezuela that were not under the control of the Ministry of the Penitentiary Services. Among them, the Ministry of the Interior has taken control of four: Aragua Penitentiary Center (Tocorón, September 20), Carabobo Judicial Confinement Center (Tocuyito, October 25), José Antonio Anzoátegui Judicial Confinement Center (Puente Ayala, October 30), and the Monagas Judicial Confinement Center (La Pica, November 3).
(Últimas Noticias) by Eligio Rojas, with Orinoco Tribune content
Translation: Orinoco Tribune
orinocotribunehttps://orinocotribune.com/author/orinocotribune/November 30, 2023