Death Squad In Venezuela Kills 11, Disappears

JP Carroll | National Security & Foreign Affairs Reporter

A death squad in rural Venezuela gunned down 11 people in cold blood at dawn Saturday in an ongoing gang dispute.

Victims were told to get out of their three respective houses in a town in the Trujillo state, and were then executed. The killers used a combination of shotguns and handguns to murder their targets.

Three of the victims were minors, and one victim was from Colombia. The killings are reportedly retribution for an ongoing feud between rival gangs “Cagón” and “Los Cáscaras.” The gangs’ names respectively translate to “Frightened” and “The Fruit Peels.”

The “Frightened” gang likely committed these murders to avenge the death of one of their gangsters who was allegedly killed by “The Fruit Peels.” The gangsters quickly left the scene of the crime once the deed was done, and are still at large.

Gangland killings are becoming more common in Venezuela. Police are having a tough time managing mass protests as well as rampant crime due to the country’s economy, which will reach 720 percent inflation by the end of 2016, according to the IMF.

Venezuela is in a state of increasing lawlessness as the Socialist government of President Nicolas Maduro continues to butt heads with the conservative opposition. Political discord has been the norm in Venezuela since a conservative coalition took over the country’s National Assembly, the equivalent of Congress, in December 2015.

Caracas, the Venezuelan capital, is the world’s most murderous city, according to a study by a Mexican NGO. There are 119.87 murders per 100,000 inhabitants in the Venezuelan capital.

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