The Train of Aragua Criminal Organization

August 17, 2018 Crime , OPINION/NEWS , OTHER , South America

PN photo



Ricardo Swire



Not long ago a team of elite Peruvian National Police (PNP) officers shuttered the “Train of Aragua”, an influential criminal gang. Born fifteen years ago from a pseudo railway union established in Aragua, central Venezuela, no less than five hundred members unite in extortion, kidnapping, robbery and murder, members often replicating Mara Salvatrucha (MS-13) tradecraft. Train of Aragua was empowered by purchasing the conscience of high-level public officials. During 2016 PNP’s chief of the central region officially acknowledged the criminal organization’s existence.


The August 3, 2018 enforcement offensive captured five Train of Aragua gangsters in Plaza Norte, Lima. Peru’s prison houses no less than seventy-two Venezuelan nationals. Three hundred and fifty thousand Venezuelan residents qualify Peru as second to Colombia’s eight hundred thousand Venezuelan migrants. The five cross-border criminals planned to rob a bank on the corner of Fauccett and Sings Callao avenue in Peru’s capital city.


Officers seized two revolvers, one pistol, one grenade, several balaclavas and a sketch of the targeted bank. The PNP’s Directorate of Criminal Investigations or DIRINCRI highlighted “Catire” as most dangerous of the detainees. He was a contract assassin in Venezuela credited with six murders. Among sixty-seven active Venezuelan criminal syndicates, Train of Aragua is one of forty-two that specialize in kidnapping and extortion. Twenty-five of the criminal organizations linked to drugs trafficking.


Invisible members, employed to Venezuelan state agencies CNE and Saime, provide Train of Aragua’s extortion component with data on potential victims from the citizenry. Some Venezuelan police officials relocated from San Casimiro in Aragua and La Villa del Rosario after receiving threats. Train of Aragua kidnappers use multiple support systems, comprised of “keepers” and “coolers” while arranging payment of “trofero.” Victims are imprisoned in the basements of houses in Aragua, with security provided by “gariteros.”





Ricardo Swire - Tuck Magazine

Ricardo Swire

Ricardo Swire is the Principal Consultant at R-L-H Security Consultants & Business Support Services and writes on a number of important issues.

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