During the Police Week in the city of Washington, Dionisio Gutiérrez, president of Fundación Libertad y Desarrollo (Liberty and Development Foundation), met with Joseph Funk, who has been part of the United States Secret Service for twenty-one years, from 1983 to 2004, to discuss transnational crime and hemispheric security.
Gutiérrez began indicating the serious problems of governability in Guatemala, produced by the dysfunctionality and political underdevelopment of its elites, “Guatemala is in danger of becoming a narco state and migration towards the United States seems unstoppable. It is urgent that we work together to eradicate these scourges which beset our region and end up affecting and carrying great expenses for the North American society.”
Likewise, Funk pointed out the need for “joint efforts from federal agencies, the FBI, the Secret Service, and police departments to play a role in transnational security.” Additionally, he shared part of his experience in the US agency where he served: “During my career I have combated organized crime, drug trafficking, violent crimes, homicides and fraud. What I have learned in these years is that the only way to obtain success in the fight against transnational crime is achieving the cooperation and coordination among security institutions of different countries.”
Finally, Gutiérrez ended the discussion affirming that the approach towards Latin America must be transnational: “for multi-national problems, the solutions must be transnational. In Guatemala, we have opportunist and criminal governments; therefore, it is indispensable that the elites further engage with the strengthening of democracy and their institutions to guarantee the Rule of Law. ”
This encounter is part of a series of meetings that Dionisio Gutiérrez is holding with US Government Officials and former officials to address security problems in the North Triangle of Central America.