Interpol alerts will be used in missing persons cases

06 de mayo de 2013 11:29

During the President’s weekly broadcast, the minister of the interior Jose Serrano announced new measures to help Ecuador investigate and prosecute homicide and missing persons cases.

In recent months, high-profile disappearances such as that of Karina del Pozo, and the capture of Ecuadorian fugitives who crossed into Perú or Colombia have brought attention to shortcomings in the current system.

The Ministry of the Interior will create a DNA database of unidentified bodies found in Ecuador. The database should help those who report a missing family member find out if a body of their loved one has been found by the state. Information about missing persons will also be published on a new portal of the National Police website.

According to police data, in the last few years, 27 disappearances have been reported.

Police will use Interpol’s system of international notices to request international cooperation on missing persons investigations in Ecuador. The Interpol notices are categorized by colours: red “to seek the location and arrest of wanted persons with a view to extradition or similar lawful action,” yellow “to help locate missing persons,” and black "to seek information on unidentified bodies," among others. 

During the broadcast, President Rafael Correa committed to improving the justice system’s record on handling murder investigations. Minister Serrano said at the same time that negligence and corruption in the judiciary shouldn’t be a factor when it comes to public servant’s abilities to carry out timely investigations.

Serrano said that corruption and impunity were practically legal in Ecuador a few years ago, and that he’s committed to the continuing process of change.

He said families should not be revictimized by the negligence of public servants after they’ve already lost someone.

Original story

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